What Is Hametz? by the Forward

What Is Hametz?

During the holiday of Passover, Jews must abstain from eating hametz. When any of the five grains, wheat, barley, rye, spelt or oats, comes into contact with water and leavening can occur, it is considered hametz. When the Jews left Egypt during the Exodus, they did not have time to let their dough rise, so they baked it in unleavened loaves. To remember the haste with which they left, we do not eat any products that may have leavened, and we eat matzo instead.

Contact Shira Hanau at hanau@forward.com


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