Monday, April 18, 2011

Passover Explained

We used to celebrate Passover at my Grandma Esther's house in my earliest childhood. What I most vividly remember of those holidays is the fact that I wouldn't eat most of the food!

Fool that I was, I didn't like my grandma's homemade chopped liver--though that was probably because it contained raw onions, because I loved my own mom's sauteed chicken livers--or her matzoh ball soup. Ironic because SC LOVES matzoh ball soup and I've now taken to keeping the mix in the house and learned how to make a good quick version of the soup.

I remember her special dish set for Passover--gold edged and printed with pink roses. In fact, I now own, that set,though everything except one platter is in storage, a platter that is now my special occasion plate for birthdays and Chanukkah parties.

I remember candied fruit slices and a bowl of walnuts--I liked the nuts. And the boxes of thin mints that teens from some Jewish benevolent organization always sold around Passover that we had both at home and at Grandma's house.

My own mother has always served a "Passover" meal, but we never did the full seder, and over the years I think it's mainly serving hard boiled eggs, matzoh and that icky gefilte fish as part of the meal--Mom never made the soup.  But we've never up there at the holiday and the girls don't know much about Passover.

It's one holiday we've never observed. The Man likes matzoh, and I often make Sephardic style macaroons (even though I'm Ashkenazi), but  somehow I've never felt the need to observe Passover. Partly because I love carbs so much and especially since I HATE gefilte fish. And if you've ever smelled the jarred kind, you probably get this.

What do YOU know about Passover? Ever wonder what Jews do at a seder, the meal that was probably Jesus's "Last Supper"?

Here then, for your reading pleasure is a link to a piece on Slate entitled "The Two Minute Haggadah: A Passover Seder for the Impatient"

And if you're having gefilte fish tonight, please eat my share too. All of it..............


Saints and Spinners said...

Oh man. I love gefilte fish. I know. It's the aquatic equivalent of SPAM. My aunt made French fish balls called quenelles one year because she shared your loathing of gefilte fish.

Here's something cool from the last seder my family attended: there was an orange on the seder plate:

The Library Lady said...

Perhaps there is a lovely homemade version. I'm sure once upon a time Grandma was the sort of cook who made it from scratch, complete with a live carp in the bathtub.

But I hate the stuff--as SC said: "Mom, I don't even like the way it smells!" And then there's that jelly stuff...

Ironic, because I LOVE just about any other fish or seafood. And I love horseradish--at least when eating it as cocktail sauce with something trayf like shrimp :D

Magpie said...

Shiksa here, but I went to a lot of seders as a child. All I really remember was leaving the door open for Elijah.

The Library Lady said...

I was amused to see an article in the NY Times about several restaurants offering set-ups for seders at meals this week. I guess the door opens often enough for Elijah to get in and out :D

Anonymous said...

Well, I remember the one year I did manage to really kill the gefilite fish taste (and my taste buds as well) with some particularly strong ZATARAINS horseradish)

Since then, nah, I've neglected that and most of the other 'delicacies' (not really my favorite foods overall), save for some yummy Matzoh 'Bark'

Alia Shields said...

Our friends made this really yummy gefilte fish at our seder this year. It had a sort of sweet and sour sauce on it, plus it was the frozen kind not the jarred stuff. But then I actually am okay with the jarred stuff slathered in horseradish.