Tuesday, April 15, 2014

7 Practical Passover Lessons

1. Seltzer is more than a drink.  This bubbly is perfect for getting wine stains out that clumsy --slightly drunk --relatives leave on your best white tablecloth.

 Most importantly, substitute seltzer for water in your knedlach-matzah ball recipe--so guests will say: "These are so light." It doesn't do anything for brisket.

2. TV series are a guide for religious practice. Game of Thrones opening episode cautioned--"Watch out for the person who pours wine into your kiddush cup." And now that Man Men is back for its final season we are  reminded what mishap can happen when you have four full cups of alcohol at one meal. Anyone have that good of a time?

Downtown Abbey: Set up and clean up is much easier
if you are Cora, The Countess of Grantham, hosting seder. According to Jonathan Sarna, Cora , the daughter of Isidore Levinson, may well be Jewish.

3. Margarine spreads better than butter. Matzah cracks less when you spread it with margarine instead of butter. This is no time to watch calories, carbs, salt, sugars, alcohol intake or anything else having to do with health. It is a wonder our people have survived--seders.

4. Taxes are a Passover ritual. Taxes, if not the Haggadah, teach freedom comes at a price. Is it only a coincidence that tax day and seder always overlap?

5. Supermarkets are a Jewish community finder.  Supermarkets are big brother watching where the Jews live. Markets in non-Jewish neighborhoods have four boxes of matzah on a shelf in some far off corner. On the other hand, rows of kosher for Passover food are in the supermarkets where Jews live. Who's job is at Super Fresh to be mapping where Jews live? So when moving to a new neighborhood and if you care, use supermarket shelves to be your Jewish GPS.

6. Ovens and refrigerators need their yearly holiday. Only because of Passover do I pull out all the drawers and shelves of the refrigerator and the racks in the oven. These appliances religiously appreciate their yearly scrubbing and celebrate the hope of not becoming a fully developed science project.

7.  Put the ing in your Spring.  To get the winter cobwebs out of your head and body get ready for seder. They don't make themselves. Seder requires shopping, chopping, washing, scrapping, roasting, mixing, and cleaning. And that is only for the seder plate.

After this winter we need all the spr-ing we can get.
Chag sa-me-ach