Passover

From 1600s Europe to a lesbian feminist seder, these 4 Haggadahs are a trip through Jewish history

A children's Haggadah from 1945 compares draws parallels between the Passover narrative and the Holocaust. (Yeshiva University Museum/Center for Jewish History)

NEW YORK (JTA) — From graphic novel Haggadahs to a Donald Trump-themed one, if you’re looking for a certain kind of guide to the Passover seder, chances are it’s out there. Recent years have seen a proliferation of political, environmental, family-friendly,  or just plain irreverent Haggadahs, but the urge to… Read more »

The Passover kitniyot argument isn’t worth a hill of beans

Rice, lentils, chick peas, beans and other legumes shown in a produce market in Netanya, Israel. (David Silverman/Getty Images)

(JTA) — Israel held elections under the cloud of its leader’s possible indictment. The world’s far right and its far left have found common cause in their hatred of the Jews. There is a measles outbreak among the Orthodox. And friends want to kvetch about kitniyot. Every year around… Read more »

‘Sesame Street’ seder leads new kids’ books

Four questions. Four cups of wine. Four types of children. At Passover, the number four figures prominently in the rituals of the seder, the ceremonial holiday meal that can be mesmerizing and mystifying. Four new delightful and brightly illustrated books for young kids will enliven — and help explain… Read more »

A family Haggadah imagines a ‘complicated, engaging and fleshy’ Passover

The Kveller Haggadah is "for curious kids — and their grown-ups." (Kveller)

(JTA) — The Passover seder can be boring for kids. A new Haggadah is trying to change that. Published by Kveller, a Jewish parenting site, the Kveller Haggadah is “for curious kids — and their grown-ups.” The Haggadah’s co-creators are Elissa Strauss, a columnist on parenthood for CNN, and… Read more »

Kosher supermarkets hate cleaning for Passover as much as you do

An illustrative photo of a shopper at a grocery store picking up a box of matzah. (William Thomas Cain/Getty Images)

NEW YORK (JTA) — Pomegranate, a gourmet kosher supermarket in Brooklyn, spends $75,000 every year getting its kitchen ready for Passover. Hungarian Kosher Foods, a supermarket in Chicago, starts clearing its aisles for Passover eight weeks ahead of the holiday. The week before Passover, at Zabar’s, a Jewish favorite… Read more »

Dark chocolate espresso truffles are vegan — and kosher for Passover

Most of us need few excuses to make a batch of chocolate truffles, especially when coffee is involved. My take on chocolate espresso truffles combines a velvety chocolate base with just enough espresso flavor to give you your caffeine fix. The fact that this version is vegan, kosher for… Read more »

Here’s a Passover menu that’s low on calories and carbs

I’m a big fan of whole grains, but they can easily become heavy — even the healthy ones. I’m offering a lighter, lower calorie and lower carbohydrate option for Passover meals this year. I love cauliflower as a stand-in for potatoes and rice. Not only is it delicious, it’s… Read more »

Why this cherished, home-based holiday is about a lot more than good food

A scene from Exodus

What is the essence of Passover? On the one hand, it seems obvious: Passover is about gathering together with loved ones to recall, through sumptuous home rituals, the exodus from Egypt. We gather round our seder tables and quickly become engulfed in the warmth of family and friends, the… Read more »

Why matzah is a non-Jewish staple in the Netherlands

A shopper browses for matzah at the Amsterdam Noord branch of the Jumbo supermarket chain, March 17, 2018. (Cnaan Liphshiz)

ENSCHEDE, Netherlands (JTA) — For most matzah bakeries, Passover is their lifeline and only claim to financial viability. After the weeklong holiday, during which Jews are commanded to consume matzah to commemorate their ancestors’ hurried flight out of Egypt, demand for the famously tasteless cracker drops sharply. Except, that is,… Read more »

A tour guide uncovers Passover secrets in the Met Museum’s Egyptian wing

Nachliel Selavan giving a tour at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. (Debra Nussbaum Cohen)

NEW YORK (JTA) — I have roamed the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Egyptian wing many times, marveling at sarcophagi, statues of Horus and Ra, and portraits of young men on ancient panels who gaze back at visitors, looking shockingly familiar and contemporary. But on a Sunday just before Passover,… Read more »

5 Haggadahs and other Passover supplements to modernize your seder this year

Even an 18th-century Haggadah from Switzerland like the one seen here could benefit from a link to the present. (Godong/UIG via Getty Images)

NEW YORK (JTA) — Although Jews have celebrated Passover by reading from the Haggadah in one form or another for 2,000 years, Jewish organizations and publishers strive each year to connect the holiday to modern times with fresh Haggadahs as well as supplements. If you’re looking to give your seder a… Read more »

A Spanish university’s first-ever Passover seder is being organized by American students

Fulbright scholars McCall Wells, left, and Danielle Elliott are organizing an interfaith seder at the Universidad Camilo José Sela in Villafranca del Castillo, Spain. (Melissa Marazas)

MADRID (JTA) — Every Passover, Danielle Elliott joins her parents in Chicago. She helps prepare haroset, delights in her mom’s elaborate Passover decorations and enjoys spending the holiday with her family. But this year Elliott will be recounting the story of the Jews’ exodus from Egypt several thousand miles… Read more »