Guess who else besides pizzaioli face hardships from New York City’s new hard line on coal- and wood-fired ovens? I’ll give you a hint. The original recipe for the baked good they produce included the step “Finish on a hot, flat rock under the blistering Egyptian sun.” If you said matzoh, give yourself a cigar.
The New York Post reports that Brooklyn’s Hasidic (read: super-orthodox) neighborhoods are home to about a dozen traditional matzoh bakeries that use coal. The article quotes the manager of one of these bakeries as lamenting, “This is the religious tradition for all these years. Gas stoves can’t be as hot as coal and wood. It’s also about the religion. This is how we bake for the past thousands of years and we don’t want to change anything.”
There is also a quote from the city’s mayor, Eric Adams, who said last week, “We don’t want to hurt businesses in the city and we don’t want to hurt the environment. So, let’s see if we can find a way to get the resolutions we’re looking for.”
Reaching a compromise may require a miracle.