Josephus’s Homemade Matzah
Works of Flavius Josephus
Makes Two -Three round Matzah’s
Josephus Flavius was a famous Jewish historian of the first century at the time of the Second Temple destruction. If Josephus had come across this Matzah recipe, he would have included it in his writings.....WHY? BECAUSE IT'S THAT GOOD!!!
In-Addition to the ingredients have some cheesecloth standing by, Olive oil and some salt. Also optional is to use Non-Gluten flour which I use often for my friends.
Optional- Use Schmaltz and Gribenes. Saute your onions in Schmaltz and add your Gribenes at the end. Instead of using Olive oil in the recipe use Schmaltz for everything.
Preheat your oven to 500 degrees. If you have a pizza stone use it. Alternatively, use some unglazed ceramic tiles. Use a cookie tray if you do not have any of the above.
Sauté the Onions in some butter and olive oil on a very small flame until the onions caramelize. The onions should be very dark in color but not burnt. When you initially toss in your onions add some
Kosher Salt to the onions (½ tsp), which will help draw out some of the moisture. After several minutes, toss in about ½ tsp of sugar, which will help with the caramelizing. Note: add enough salt and sugar for the scale of the recipe. If in doubt just taste it.
A technique to drain the onions of all the excess oil is to place them in cheesecloth, in a sieve over a bowl. After they have cooled slightly squeeze out the remaining moisture and oil/butter.
Note: I make the onions the day before. After I have squeezed out all excess fat place them in a sieve weighed down with something heavy and refrigerate till the next day. The weight will help extract out every last bit of moisture and oil/butter.
To your beaten eggs add the pepper, Honey, Olive Oil (or Schmaltz), water, and caramelized onions (roasted garlic?). Note:if onions were refrigerated overnight be diligent about mixing. In a large bowl toss in 1 1/2 cups of flour, make a well and add the egg mixture. Make the Matzah dough and use the reserved 1/2 flour to bring the dough together. You may need more or less flour depending on the humidity of your kitchen. If you are making the large recipe I don't make a WELL. I combine everything in a large bowl and slowly add flour until it comes together.
Knead your dough for about 8-15 minutes until it springs back when you shove your thumb into it. Note: if using non-gluten flower it will not spring back all that much. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let rest for about 15 minutes. Resting the dough will relax the gluten and make it easier to roll out. Using a rolling pin roll out your dough to your desired shape and size. Take a fork and pierce the dough making sure to go all the way through. Piercing the dough in this fashion will prevent it from rising in the oven.
Do this on both sides and make sure you cover the whole Matzah full of holes. Using a pastry brush lightly brush dough on one side with olive oil and sprinkle with just a little bit of kosher salt and transfer using a Pizza Peel (I pierce and prepare
dough on the Pizza Peel for easy transfer). If you plan to use a cookie sheet, make sure to use parchment paper. If using a pizza stone you will need to cook it about 3-5 minutes and if you're not using a stone it might require a longer cooking time.
Note: Using a culinary scale I weigh the dough and scale to personal preference. My preference is 7-9 oz little dough balls to be rolled out into little Matzahs.
I.E I usually make a lot of Matzah's so lets say I make 8 lbs of dough which yields 128 oz, that give me 16 8 oz Matzahs. Lots of eating.
Gribenes added to sauteed onion mixture.
Onions and Gribenes added to all ingredients except flour.
Flour added slowly to create dough.
Starting the kneading process.
Almost done kneading.
Done and resting.
Starting to scale.
The dough weighed 3000 grams and I scaled it down to 15 x 200 gram balls.
Making the holes.
Oven lined with titles for baking at 500 degrees.
10 Large onions
This saute pan is a 23 Qt pan.
Gluten free Flour I used for my friends.