Matzo Toppings Enliven Passover Snacking

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During Passover, many of us eat matzo at all three meals. No snack is complete without matzo. We usually spread butter or cream cheese on top. Sometimes we enlist jelly. We spoon on haroset, too.

But I quickly tire of this routine.

In search of fresh ideas to pair with matzo, I began thinking outside of the Manischewitz box several years ago. At first, I gravitated to the usual cream cheese and lox combination. But then I experimented with ingredients I had at home or could buy at any supermarket.

I concocted an array of exciting options — as many as my imagination could devise.

Some of these toppings turn matzo into mini meals. Some of them are as easy as brushing olive oil on toasted matzo. I highly recommend toasting matzo, which creates a mild smoky scent and a pleasing snap that plays counterpoint to anything you pile on top, even plain old cream cheese.

In the cream cheese category, whipped cream cheese, with its delightfully fluffy texture, is far superior to its competition, especially when it comes to ease of spreading on matzo’s bumpy surface. To add color and flavor to cream cheese’s inherent whiteness, sprinkle on some chopped basil, cilantro or chives. Try a dash of paprika, too.

During Passover week, I continually am seeking a new twist — some unique flavor combination to layer on matzo. Something no one else has ever tried before.

All recipes serve 2

Cream Cheese, Radish and Scallions | Dairy

Cream cheese for spreading

1 square of matzo, broken into 4 pieces

2-3 radishes, sliced into paper-thin circles and cut in half

3 scallions, sliced thin

½ teaspoon dill, minced

Kosher salt to taste

Spread the cream cheese onto the matzo pieces. Place the radish on top. Sprinkle on the scallions, dill and salt. Serve immediately.

Cream Cheese, Tomatoes and Capers | Dairy

Cream cheese for spreading

1 square of matzo, broken into 4 pieces

1 large tomato, sliced thin

1 teaspoon capers, drained

Spread the cream cheese onto the matzo pieces. Place the tomato slices on top. Sprinkle with capers. Serve immediately.

Cream Cheese, Tomatoes and Olives | Dairy

Cream cheese for spreading

1 square of matzo, broken into 4 pieces

1 large tomato, sliced thin

6-8 black or green pitted olives, sliced into circles, preferably not canned

½ teaspoon. basil, minced

Spread the cream cheese onto the matzo pieces. Place the tomato slices on top. Arrange the olives over the tomatoes. Sprinkle the basil on top. Serve immediately.

Goat Cheese and Raisins | Dairy

Soft goat cheese for spreading

1 square of matzo, broken into 4 pieces

¼ cup raisins

Honey for drizzling

¼ teaspoon thyme, or more, if desired

Spread the goat cheese onto the matzo pieces. Sprinkle the raisins over the cheese. Drizzle with honey, and sprinkle on the thyme. Serve immediately.

Goat Cheese, Tomatoes and Oregano | Dairy

Soft goat cheese for spreading

1 square of matzo, broken into 4 pieces

1 large tomato, sliced thin

¼ teaspoon oregano

Kosher salt to taste

Spread the goat cheese onto the matzo pieces. Place the tomato slices on top. Sprinkle with oregano and salt. Serve immediately.

Goat Cheese and Strawberries | Dairy

Soft goat cheese for spreading

1 square of matzo, broken into 4 pieces

6 strawberries, sliced thin

Balsamic vinegar for

drizzling, preferably aged

Spread the goat cheese onto the matzo pieces. Place the strawberry slices on top. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar. Serve immediately.

Avocado and Lox | PAREVE

¼ pound Nova Scotia salmon, sliced thin

1 square of matzo, broken into 4 pieces

1 ripe avocado, pitted and sliced thin

Red onion, 1-2 thin slices

Arrange the Nova Scotia salmon on the matzo pieces. Place the avocado slices on top. Separate the rings of the red onion, and arrange them over the avocado. Serve immediately.

Avocado and Tomatoes | PAREVE

1 large tomato, sliced thin

1 square of matzo, broken into 4 pieces

1 ripe avocado, pitted and sliced thin

½ teaspoon parsley, chopped

Place the tomato slices over the matzo pieces. Arrange the avocado slices over the tomato. Sprinkle the parsley on top. Serve immediately.

Toasted Matzo and Olive Oil | PAREVE

1 square of matzo, broken into 4 pieces

1 tablespoon olive oil, or more, if needed

Kosher salt to taste

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the matzo pieces onto aluminum foil and slide it into the oven or toaster oven. Bake for 2 minutes, or until warmed through and browning on the edges. Remove it from the oven. Brush olive oil on the matzo. Sprinkle with salt. Serve immediately.