Michael Eastman’s Matzah Brei

Michael Eastman’s Matzah Brei


3 tablespoons schmaltz

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1 1/2 large onions, coarsely chopped

5 sheets of matzah (Michael prefers using onion matzahs), coarsely broken into a medium bowl

1-2 cups warm, chicken broth   

Coarse kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

4-5 tablespoons unsalted butter

Jam, jelly, or honey, for serving


Heat schmaltz in a large, non-stick skillet over medium heat.  Add chopped onions and sauté slowly, about 10 minutes, or until onions become translucent.  

While onions cook, pour warm chicken broth over matzah, using just enough to cover matzah.  Let matzah soak about 5 minutes, maximum. Strain matzah and add to pan with onions. Stir immediately and flatten mixture with a spatula. Let brown over medium-high heat until the underside gets nice and brown and a little bit crusty, at least 10-15 minutes. (“Oh, the essence of schmaltz”, Eastman sighed. The smells emanating from his kitchen were sublime!!!).

Whisk 10 eggs in a medium bowl and season lightly with coarse kosher salt.

Flatten matzah to fill the entire pan and evenly pour beaten eggs over matzah. Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper and use spatula to move the mixture around, ultimately making it into a flat pancake shape. Let mixture cook over low heat until browned and solid enough to flip.

Slide Matzah Brei onto a large round platter (just larger than your skillet) and add a tablespoon of butter to the pan. Then flip Matzah Brei back into skillet, browned side up. Spread an additional 2 tablespoons of softened butter over cooked side. Cook for an additional 5 minutes. Flip Matzah Brei again, buttering pan as before. Cook for an additional 2 minutes and slide onto a serving platter.

Cut into wedges and serve with additional salt, pepper, fruit jam or jelly or, as Eastman prefers, with some really good honey!