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Every year at Passover, a highlight of the season is the traditional unleavened bread, or matzah, that is usually served at meals. Flat and crisp, it symbolizes the dough that Israelite women had to grab before it had time to rise, as they and their families escaped in the night from Egypt. During the eight days of Passover (or seven if you're in Israel), in commemoration of the Israelites' bravery and resourcefulness, this is the only bread allowed in observant Jewish homes.
At the traditional Seder dinner that marks the start of Passover, matzah plays a special role, especially if you’ve got kids: one piece, called the “afikomen,” is purposely removed from the stack, broken up, and hidden for the kids to find. The host must get it back from them for “ransom,” and it is the last food to be eaten at the very end of the meal.
To keep the matzah fresh and protected, many families will have a special cover. Here’s one that you and your kids can make together to celebrate this year, and many more to come.
Note: this project can be done two ways. If you like to sew, we have directions below for how to sew the entire traditional matzah cover from scratch, complete with three inner pockets for pieces of matzah (the middle one will be for the “afikomen”). But if sewing isn’t your thing, you can also purchase a plain cloth bag at most craft stores, which will also work just fine.