Passover

Cleaning – and Loving It

I have a friend who gets little pleasure from cooking. It is a reality of life for her rather than a tactile, sensual experience. That is, unless she is cooking for the Sabbath. When she does that, the activity is infused with meaning and importance and changes from an annoying necessity into a higher calling....

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Hey bro! Hey sis!

There are very few people that I would rather spend time with than my daughters, whether by birth or marriage. It also gives my husband and me unimaginable pleasure when the next-generation siblings enjoy being together. So, when one of them asked if I would give a “Daughters’ pre-Passover Class,” in spite of everyone’s hectic...

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Passover and the Pacific Crossing

To the dismay of my parents and the bewilderment of my wife Susan’s parents, we sailed our family from Los Angeles to Honolulu on our small sailboat a number of years ago. We spent nearly a year in preparation. Susan planned the meals for the entire voyage and wrote down where each item of food...

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What do you eat at a Passover feast?

As a chef, I have a question pertaining to the traditional Passover meal. The traditional Seder dinner typically includes gefilte fish, matzo ball soup, brisket or roast chicken, potato kugel and carrot and prune tzimmes. Now, we know that none of these foods originated in ancient Israel – they’re from a later period in Jewish...

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Reaching Joy

These past six months, since COVID-19 has dominated the headlines (with no end in sight), we have been called on to adjust, revise and improvise in both our personal and professional lives.  Thinking outside the box, hatching new ideas and implementing them has become a necessary tool for survival. Fortunately, there is no shortage of...

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4 Sons = 1 Man (or Woman)

As part of the Passover Seder (program) we speak of four sons, each of whom is found in Scripture.  They are described as the wise son, the evil son, the simple son, and the son who doesn’t know how to ask.  Each one’s questions, or lack of them, needs to elicit an individually crafted response...

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What do you eat at a Passover feast?

As a chef, I have a question pertaining to the traditional Passover meal. The traditional Seder dinner typically includes gefilte fish, matzo ball soup, brisket or roast chicken, potato kugel and carrot and prune tzimmes. Now, we know that none of these foods originated in ancient Israel – they’re from a later period in Jewish...

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The Ups and Downs of Freedom

During the administration of George W. Bush, I was privileged to be appointed to a presidential commission. I received a document that included something akin to the words, “power to execute the duties of this office.” Lopping off a few words, I tried to explain to my children that now, in the manner of the...

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Yet We Live

As human beings, we struggle to know ourselves; no matter how close we are to someone it is impossible to completely know another person. This is particularly true for our parents. When my friend, Naomi*, was sitting shiva (the Jewish week of mourning) for her mother, she discovered some flabbergasting news. Naomi’s father was her...

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Each Generation We Must See Ourselves

We are in the midst of Passover and I am delighted to be sharing the festival with so many children and grandchildren.  At the same time, that means that my computer and I haven’t seen a great deal of each other this week. My head is full of menus and cooking timetables, leaving little room...

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