Caramel Matzoh Crunch. Caramel Chocolate Matzo. Chocolate Matzo Bark. Chocolate Matzo Brittle. Chocolate Matzo Crunch. David Lebovitz calls it Chocolate-Covered Caramelized Matzah Crunch. Martha calls it Toffee Chocolate Matzah (yes, even Martha has her own variation!) Smitten Kitchen calls it Chocolate Caramel Matzo Crack(ers). My friend Dale makes a real jacked up version, which she calls Matzo Roca and swears that the recipe is the same as Almond Roca. (And, yes, there are almost as many variations in the way to spell matzo as there are recipes!)
Whatever you call this Passover confection, most of the recipes involve the same basic ingredients – matzo, brown sugar, butter and chocolate. I use Smitten Kitchen’s recipe (which she says she adapted from “David Lebovitz who adapted it from Marcy Goldman who is the genius who first applied this to matzo”) and we just call it Matzo Crack because, well, uh it’s pretty addicting.
I made a couple of batches for Passover and the leftovers were in a huge Ziploc bag in the fridge and every single time I opened the fridge I’d take a piece (or two). It was becoming a problem. Thank goodness for the monthly work potluck! Needless to say, now all my coworkers are addicted. Everyone loved it. Many didn’t even realize there was matzo involved. And they begged me to put it on the blog. So here it is. It’s unbelievably easy. I’m tellin’ you, it’s so good, it doesn’t have to be just for Passover. In fact, SK says try it with saltine crackers. Oh boy. I’m in trouble.
4 to 6 sheets matzo
1 cup (2 sticks, or 8 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into a few large pieces
1 cup packed light brown sugar
a big pinch sea salt
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1-1/2 cups semi- or bittersweet chocolate chips
1 cup toasted chopped almonds, pecans, walnuts or nut of your choice (optional)
Extra sea salt for sprinkling (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
Line an 11-by-17-inch baking sheet completely with foil, and then line the base of the foil with parchment paper, cut to fit.
Line the bottom of the baking sheet with matzo. You’ll need to break pieces to fit in extra spaces.
In a medium heavy-duty saucepan, melt the butter and brown sugar together, and stir it over medium heat until it begins to boil. Once it has begun boiling, let it bubble for three more minutes, stirring it well. It will thicken a bit as it cooks. Remove from the heat and add the salt and vanilla, and then quickly pour it over the matzo or crackers. You’ll want to spread it quickly, as it will begin to set as soon as it is poured.
Bake the caramel-covered crackers for approximately 15 minutes, watching carefully as it will bubble and the corners might darken too quickly and/or burn. You can reduce the heat if you see this happening.
Remove from oven and immediately cover with chocolate chips. Let stand five minutes, and then spread them evenly across the caramel. An offset spatula works great here. If you’re using them, sprinkle the chocolate with toasted chopped nuts and/or sea salt.
Once completely cool — I sometimes speed this process up in the fridge, impatient as should be expected in the face of caramel crack(ers) — break it into pieces and store it in a container or Ziploc in the fridge. It’ll keep for as long as you can avoid eating it all.