The following recipe and photography was provided by recipe developer and food photographer, Ashley Durand of Plate & Pen.
Since living in Cleveland, I’ve discovered that it is a true melting pot of religions and cultures. The area where I live happens to have a large Jewish community.
To be honest, I was not very familiar with matzo brei prior to making this recipe, other than the well-known fact that it uses unleavened bread. I have never used matzo for cooking, so I figured with the Jewish holiday of Passover around the corner, I would give it a try. It was a truly enlightening experience. I did some research to figure out the best ways to approach this recipe so I could do it justice.
From what I gathered, there are many variations of this recipe made with fruit compote and syrup. I also have seen several with almonds or mixed nuts. I chose to feature a mixed berry compote, but I blended it to create a thick sauce and finished it with a honey drizzle.
Let me tell you, whether or not you celebrate Jewish holidays, this recipe is absolutely delicious! I could not stop eating it.
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For the Berry Compote
- 3/4 cup strawberries, chopped
- 3/4 cup blueberries
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 tsp. lemon zest
- 2 Tbsp. lemon juice
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 3 Tbsp. corn starch in in 1/4 cup cold water, post baking
For the Matzo Brei
- 5-6 sheets of unsalted matzo, broken into 2-inch pieces
- 1 1/4 cup hot water
- 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
- 3 large eggs, beaten
- 1/2 tsp. cinnamon for eggs
- 5 Tbsp. unsalted butter
- Preheat the oven to 425°F. Adjust the rack to the middle position.
- In a baking dish, mix together all of the berry compote ingredients except for the corn starch mixture. Bake for 20 minutes.
- While the berries bake, beat the eggs for the matzo brei in a bowl with the salt and cinnamon.
- In a 13×9 baking dish, evenly layer the 2-inch unsalted matzo pieces. You should be able to form 3 layers.
- Pour the hot water over the matzo in a zigzag fashion. Let it soften for 2 minutes.
- Add the egg mixture to the matzo and stir with a fork until the eggs fully incorporate. Don’t worry about the layers getting messed up.
- In a large skillet, melt the butter.
- Begin scooping the matzo and egg mixture into the skillet. Press down with a spatula after each scoop to flatten.
- Cook over the stove for 5-7 minutes.
- Place a plate on the skillet and quickly flip. Ensure that the plate is larger than the skillet to avoid spillage.
- Slide the fully-cooked matzo disc onto a cutting board and slice how you choose. I chose wedges.
- By this time, the berries should be done baking. When ready, remove the berries from the oven and place in a blender, or use a hand blender. Add in the corn starch and water mixture to thicken.
- Pour the berry sauce over the matzo brei and add honey or a syrup. Garnish with walnuts.