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i've read conflicting things about baking ones own Matzah. So apparently it can only be baked in a "professional oven that can be heated to over 600 degrees," which doesn't make sense to me since before Ashkenazim started mass production of selling Matzoth, people had to bake it for themselves in their personal ovens. Also i read that one has to use "shmurah matzah" that was guarded from the field it was ripened, and i went to 3 different Jewish markets and bakeries to attempt to buy "shmurah flower" and of course they looked at me like i was insane. Does one need to use Shmurah matzah as defined is this strictest sense? Or can one use normal flour?

So when one wants to bake their own Matzah, what are the halakhoth? Are there differences of opinion between Sephardim and Ashkenazim? i grew up eating soft matzah and want to bake some for myself, but since my family wasn't very religious growing up i don't know if they followed any kind of halachah so i wanted to ask first.

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    Shmura flour exists, just there isn't currently almost any market for it as few people bake matza at home. You're unlikely to find it in a regular kosher store. – Double AA Mar 30 '15 at 17:49
  • Back in the day people had fire ovens which could easily be heated to 600 degrees. – Double AA Mar 30 '15 at 17:50
  • I've actually heard that too hot (i.e. the way they do ashkenazi matzos today) is considered by some to be problematic because the matzoh ends up having to come out of the oven while still soft (to avoid burning) which they argue means we should still be concerned with chimutz (rising) after it emerges from the oven. (These matzos harden as they cool/dry out.) If you want soft matzos, you might want to contact a Teimani since I believe they still often use them (at least in Israel). – Loewian Mar 30 '15 at 18:11
  • Found this online: softmatza.com/index.php/soft-matza/1lb-soft-matza-ww.html (Can't personally vouch for their reliability but don't see any reason why they wouldn't be reliable.) – Loewian Mar 31 '15 at 17:59
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Don't use normal flour. It can be bleached and enriched, which means it might already be chametz.

Long ago people had wood-fired ovens. If you knew what you were doing with a good wood-fired oven, you could easily get a temperature of 600 degrees Farenheit. Today's electric/gas ovens aren't designed for that kind of baking.

It's complicated enough that today it's really best not to try baking your own matza, unless you're really knowledgeable and have the right setup. Maybe contact a matza bakery if there's one in your town and see if you can help there?

  • Besides bleached and enriched, today's normal flour is almost always chametz, as it was soaked before grinding – Yishai Mar 30 '15 at 17:55
  • @Yishai Soaked in warm water for a long while? – Double AA Mar 30 '15 at 17:57
  • Shalom it's not hard to find unenriched and unbleached wheat flours, especially in more 'organic' kinds of stores. – Double AA Mar 30 '15 at 18:01
  • @DoubleAA, 12 to 24 hours. I don't know what temperature is typical in industry today, but some googling suggests a preference for keeping the wheat between 25 and 45 centigrade during the process. – Yishai Mar 30 '15 at 18:15
  • @DoubleAA, BTW, this is why "baked after Pesach XXX" is an outdated anachronism, unless you are just looking for freshness. – Yishai Mar 30 '15 at 18:18

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