Matzo is a Passover necessity for Jewish families around the world, and stocking up on it is an annual ritual, whether they enjoy munching on the unleavened flatbread or would avoid it like one of the 10 plagues, if only they could. Matzo Project, a Brooklyn company whose products can be found in The Fresh Market in Sarasota and Bradenton, wants to convince you that matzo should be a year-round snack.
The company makes multiple types of matzo. You'll find the large, traditional sheets of flatbread, as well as matzo "chips" and "bites," matzo crumbs with which to make matzo balls, matzo ball soup kits and chocolate-coated matzo "wonderclusters."
In addition to basic salted flavors, the company upgrades its matzo with flavor combos like "Everything Plus Two Other Things," which uses your typical everything bagel seasoning, plus paprika and crushed red pepper. Other flavors include harissa and cinnamon and sugar. The matzos are kosher, but are not marked as kosher for Passover.
The company was founded by Ashley Albert and Kevin Rodriguez, who wanted to improve upon traditional matzo, which often gets a bad rap for being dry and flavorless. Matzo Project's creations are thin and crispier than normal grocery store matzo, and deliver a satisfying snap when you bite down. They're closer in flavor and texture to a fancy cracker you might splay on a charcuterie board than the afikoman you hunt for after a Seder.
Passover doesn't return until next April. There's no reason to wait until then to snack on some matzo.
Matzo Project products are available at The Fresh Market: 5251 University Parkway, University Park, (941) 355-0417; 6701 Manatee Ave. W., Bradenton, (941) 795-1800; thefreshmarket.com.