Matzo—unleavened bread—is eaten on the Jewish holiday of Passover. The B. Manischewitz Company was started 120 years ago, two years after its founder, Dov Behr, immigrated to Cincinnati from Salant, Lithuania, in 1886. He first slaughtered and peddled kosher meat, then branched out into matzo baking. The author, Behr’s great-granddaughter, chronicles the family’s history and the technology for baking matzos. By the 1920s, Manischewitz had become the world’s largest manufacturer of matzos, producing 1.25 million a day. She reveals that decade after decade, the firm, working within the confines of Jewish law, managed to synthesize the requirements of the faith with the most modem technologies to produce more matzos for more people than any company in Jewish history. Eventually, it exported matzos to Jewish communities around the world and expanded to include such products as gefilte fish and kosher wine. This exhaustively researched book is an engaging account of the family and their matzos. --George Cohen
About the Author
Laura Manischewitz Alpern was born in Cincinnati, where she grew up with stories of her great-grandfather Dov Behr Manischewitz, founder of the Manischewitz Company. Later she lived in New Jersey and Israel, then settled with her husband in Geneva where she raised two daughters and worked for three decades as librarian in an international organization. She is a member of the Geneva Writers Group and has been published in Offshoots; Writing from Geneva.