Long ago, a large tribe of people who had become enslaved in a land they had originally gone to for protection, were forced to leave in a hurry. It takes time for natural yeasts to develop in bread and they didn’t have that time. Their traveling bread was unleavened and it became one of the symbols by which this hasty departure was remembered. You can read a brief recount of this story in the Bible, book of Exodus, chapter 12, verses 31 -42.
This is one incidence of unleavened bread that is historically significant, but since unleavened bread is simply any bread product made without a leavening agent (yeast, baking soda, baking powder for instance) you can find many examples of it worldwide that are in common use. Tortillas are unleavened bread common in Central America. Roti and chapati are unleavened breads common in India and Southeast Asia. Most of these breads are flat in form but not all flatbreads are unleavened.
Interestingly this week is the Jewish Feast of Unleavened Bread which many Christians also acknowledge. I know what it is like to celebrate this holiday and am sharing with you one of my favorite recipes. It is a delicious sweet bread with a delightful almond flavor.
Almond Unleavened Bread
Mix: 4 eggs (beaten) with 1 cup of sugar and 1 cup of flour
Add: 3/4 cup melted butter or oil
Add in increments: 2 more cups of flour, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla and 1 teaspoon almond extract, and finally 1/2 cup of unsalted, slivered almonds. Place this thick batter in a greased loaf pan and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes until bread is slightly browned on top. Cool and slice in 1/2 inch slices. Toast if desired.