What B'rakha on Massa?
When I lived in Israel I was taught that on matzot after pesach one said mazonot before and birkath hamazon afterwards if the person ate a shiur. I think this is the sefaradi psaq. What should I say?
1. Shalom 'Alekha. This is a relatively new idea, and is accepted only in certain S'pharadi circles. Both Ashk'nazim and Temanim have always said Hamossi on massa.
2. The argument that one should say m'zonoth on massa is extremely weak. How can something be m'zonoth during the year and HaMossi on Pesah?
3. This all began because people began wondering what the difference between crackers and massa is. One difference is that a cracker is not considered bread by anyone, and only if eaten as a bread substitute is it considered to be bread. See Rambam's . Hard massa is a form of bread, just as hard, dry toast is a form of bread.
4. Another difference is only apparent to someone who appreciates the fact that real massa is soft and pliable more or less like a lapha or pitta, except that it's not hamess. That is the type of massa referred to in where the Talmud discusses what to do if one finds some mouldy bread-like substance during Pesah and is unsure if it is bread (hamess) or massa. No-one would suggest that that type of massa is m'zonoth.
5. This is the type of massa we make in my home. This year I bought 1 pack of Rav Mahpud's soft massoth out of curiosity; I wanted to see what the "competition" is doing. Their massa was quite good, like a heavy saluph, but ours are just as good... if not better.
Rabbi David Bar-Hayim