Bread has long been part of the Jewish table. Bread has been a part of Jewish tradition, playing an important role in Jewish cuisine for over a thousand years. Jewish breads have also been part of sacrificial offerings during the days of the Temple.
The challah or hallah is special Jewish bread which is traditionally served on Shabbat. The challah is made of eggs, white flour, water and sugar. This type of bread which resembles the manna is covered during Shabbat celebration. The challah is also burned as a symbol of our grief in memory of the destruction of the temple.
Matzoh is Jewish bread which is cracker-like. It is made of white flour and water. This type of bread serves as a substitute for bread during Passover. Matzoh eaten at the night of the Seder is considered mitzvah. The idea of matzoh is derived from the Torah: “And they shall eat the meat on that night, roasted over the fire, and matzos, with bitter herbs they shall eat.” (Exodus 12:8)
Because Jews are not allowed to cook during Shabbat, bagels which are easy and quick to prepare are served during by many observant Jewish families. This ring shaped bread is made from yeasted wheat dough which is boiled in water and baked.
Bialy is a chewy yeast roll which is similar to bagel but instead of a hole, a depression is made and is filled with onions, garlic, poppy seeds and bread crumbs. The bread derives its name from Bialystok, a city in Poland. Ashkenazi Jewish immigrants brought bialy to the United States in the late 19th century.
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