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March 25, 2013 is Passover

Posted by on Mar. 25, 2013 at 1:21 PM
  • 2 Replies
March 25, 2013 is

Passover

Passover begins tonight! Send a free Passover eCard to celebrate the occasion! Passover is an eight-day Jewish festival that celebrates the emancipation of the Israelites. Jewish families usually celebrate Passover on the first two nights of the holiday. They hold seders to retell the story of the Israelites' exodus from Egypt and to enjoy a festive meal eaten in remembrance of their ancestors' hardships. During the meal, the youngest child asks the adults four questions about the significance of the Passover symbols.

Traditional Passover food is kosher and does not include any “chametz.” Chametz are leavened foods made with wheat, barley, or rye. When the Israelites fled Egypt, they could not wait for their bread to rise. Modern-day Jewish families eat unleavened matzo bread during Passover to honor this part of their history.

To celebrate Passover, enjoy a delicious meal in the company of friends and family. Happy Passover!

by on Mar. 25, 2013 at 1:21 PM
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Replies (1-2):
MamaMandee
by Gold Member on Mar. 25, 2013 at 3:17 PM

Read this the other day & thought it was cool:

Passover, a holiday about new starts and freedom, coincides appropriately with spring. A serious time but a joyous one, too, the celebration is as much about food and family as it is about history and remembrance. More than any other Jewish holiday, Passover is a "table holiday."

Passover commemorates the Jewish people who, led by Moses, fled bondage in Egypt and subsequently wandered in the desert seeking entry into the Promised Land. The celebration lasts eight days and starts with two symbolic seder meals served on the first and second nights. During these, the host narrates the Passover story, and the meal unfolds in an order traditional to the holiday. Specific foods–including bitter herbs that represent the bitterness of slavery, and a roasted egg that represents mourning at the Second Temple and the circle of life–symbolize aspects of the plight of the Israelites.

Leavened baked goods of any kind–cakes, cookies, as well as any items made with regular flour–are not permitted during this time. And there are other limitations on ingredients, too, that can stymie even the most capable cook. Because of these restrictions, Passover meals tend to focus on chicken, turkey, or beef brisket, and friendly squabbles about hard and soft matzo balls. But savory sides and small desserts can round out the menu and more fully evoke the holiday.

This recipe collection offers both sweets and savories that appeal to everyone at any time–dishes you would choose to prepare regardless–with the added benefit that they work for a Passover menu. They cover a spectrum of light and colorful spring flavors, and they use familiar pantry ingredients that are kosher for Passover. These dishes are simple to prepare–no high-rising sponge cake or complicated tortes among them. They'll complete a classic Passover meal in fine form.

As an added bonus, all are easy to make ahead and refrigerate or freeze. Use disposable foil bakeware for cooking and storage. Transfer the food to Passover serving platters to serve. And celebrate.

Passover Particulars

Food symbols reflect the Passover story and observance. Although customs vary among different cultures, there are some basics.

The Passover story mentions matzo, the symbolic cracker, described at the seder table as the "bread of affliction." As the story goes, when Moses led the Jews from Egypt to the promised land, they left so quickly their bread had no time to rise. Matzo is a thin, brittle, unleavened bread that replaces other breads during the holidays, and matzo crackers are ground into meal to replace wheat flour in holiday cooking and baking.

Beyond leavened baked goods, other ingredients not permitted include fermented items, particularly those mixing flour, water, and yeast; the ban also includes other leavening, such as baking soda and baking powder. Eggs and whipped egg whites are acceptable and the primary leavenings at Passover–hence the popularity of sponge cakes.

In addition to flour, other grains (and their byproducts) and seeds are avoided. For example, mustard is off-limits because it is made from a seed. Because grains such as corn are not permitted, potato starch is substituted for cornstarch.

 

See all Passover Recipes

Marcy Goldman

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by Platinum Member on Mar. 25, 2013 at 4:19 PM

Happy Passover to those that celebrate :)

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