Photos: Rachel Tepper
Kosher-for-Passover baked goods—which in accordance with the holiday, can’t be made with leavened wheat, barley, rye, spelt, or oats—often get a bad rap. Sometimes, it’s deserved: The worst offenders are pasty, dry, under-seasoned, or some unappetizing combination of the above (which, amazingly, is possible).
But it was never this way in my house, mercifully, thanks to my mother’s Passover brownies. Exactly when she started making them is unclear — they’ve been a holiday staple for that long — but family lore has it that she spied the recipe in the pages of a Jewish Community Center calendar more than two decades ago. Her adapted version is everything a brownie should be: dense, intensely chocolatey, and most importantly, very unlike those chalky Passover desserts that wind up secreted in napkins every year.
In place of regular wheat-based flour, the recipe calls for matzo cake meal. It’s similar to matzo meal, except that it’s ground more finely—this gives the final product a smoother, more brownie-like texture. Also key: the chocolate chips scattered throughout, which when baked, become pockets of gooey, rich decadence.
These brownies are so good, you might eat them year-round.
By Judy Fox-Tepper
Makes about 15 brownies
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup cocoa
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup matzo cake meal
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp. salt
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and grease 9-inch-square baking pan.
In a large bowl, beat eggs. Add sugar, cocoa, and water and mix well. Add cake meal, oil, and salt and mix well. Fold in nuts and chocolate chips. Spread the mixture into the greased pan.
Bake for about 45 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
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