Geshmirta Matzah

Tina Wasserman
Recipe by
Tina Wasserman

Geshmirta is a Yiddish word that means to shmear or spread something on top of something else. This Passover treat – a milk-soaked matzah coated with lightly sweetened cream cheese and broiled to a light golden brown – is popular among the Jewish community in South Africa, especially in Capetown.

I originally wrote this recipe (which appears in my cookbook Entree to Judaism for Families) for a friend who asked me to help re-create a food memory from her childhood. She loved this version, and I hope you will, too!

Watch this video to learn how to make the recipe or follow the instructions below.

3-4 sheets of matzah
8-oz. container of whipped cream cheese
1 egg
½ tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp of sugar
2 tbsp of sour cream, cream, or Greek yogurt
2 tbsp of sugar mixed with ½ tsp cinnamon
  • Pre-heat oven to 350F.  Line a jellyroll pan with foil, dull side facing you. Fit the matzo to line the entire bottom of the pan. Set aside.
  • Using a rubber spatula, mix the cream cheese, egg, vanilla, first 2 tablespoons of sugar, and sour cream or cream in a two-quart bowl until smooth and well combined.
  • Spread mixture evenly over the matzos (if you have one, a small, angled spatula would be perfect for younger children) and sprinkle with the remaining cinnamon sugar.
  • Bake for 15-20 minutes until mixture is slightly golden and matzah is crisp.  Cut into squares and eat within an hour to preserve crispiness.
Additional Notes
  • Regular cream cheese may be used if at room temperature.  Children will find it easier to blend ingredients by hand if using whipped.
  • Using softened ingredients at room temperature often eliminates the need for an electric mixer making the recipe toddler friendly.
  • Using ingredients softened to room temperature can eliminates the need for an electric mixer, which makes the recipe toddler-friendly.
  • Although whipped cream cheese is easiest for children to blend by hand, you can also use regular, room temperature cream cheese.

How to Make Geshmirta Matzah