- Unleavened bread is first mentioned in Exodus 12:14-17 as part of a yearly ritual or festival that Jews are mandated to keep forever, according to Judaism 101. The Seder, or Passover meal, is an eight-day ritual begun in the 13th century BCE (Before Common Era), according to Religion Facts. Passover commemorates the release of the Jews from slavery in Egypt.
- Passover matzah represents bread baked in anticipation of an immediate departure in desperate haste, when there is no time for bread to rise. In addition to the matzah, all scraps or crumbs of leavening---known as "chametz"---must be cleaned out of the house where the Seder is to be held.
- According to Judaism 101, chametz can also include foods, whether for people or animals, made from barley, oats, rye, spelt or wheat grains. One test for chametz is to cook grain for 18 minutes in water. If it is not completely cooked, it is considered chametz, or leavening proscribed for Passover.
- Matzah is so-named because of the prayers or blessings that are read over the unleavened bread during the Passover Seder. One of these blessings is known as the "ha-motzi," according to Judaism 101. There is also a second blessing before the matzah is eaten, known as the matzah prayer.