Posts Tagged ‘celebration’

New Traditions

April 9, 2012

This year, we celebrated a holiday I coined “Easter-over”. It was intended to be a non-denominational hybrid of Easter, and Passover.

Of the 9 guests, there were 3 non-practicing Jews, a couple of lapsed Catholics, and a few others that didn’t have much of an affiliation to any formalized religion at all.

It was the ideal celebration for me. It paid respect to multiple cultures and holidays, and incorporated lots of different foods.

Wasn’t it ironic, that by the end of the evening, all the “non-Jews” were asking where their favorite part of the Seder went?  Someone hid a matzo, someone else set out a glass of wine for Elijah the Prophet.  Others asked where the haroset, (an apple, nut and wine concoction reminiscent of mortar) was.

I was initially surprised but ultimately realized that the religious implications of the day did not play a significant role. Being with “family”, in this case a multi-cultural group that shared no blood but lots of love and history, was the most important aspect. Those familiar foods and rituals had become an important part of our “family’s” heritage.
Perhaps Easter-over will become a new tradition. If you don’t celebrate Passover or Easter, celebrate spring. Next year go ahead and serve ham and matzo balls if you want to, just do something meaningful with people who love you.

The Easter bunny came and went, and Elijah drank his sweet kosher wine. The matzo was found, and the leftovers packed away. Hopefully the memories will live on.

Happy Easter-over everyone!

photo: Glasshouse Images

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Unrecipe of the Week: Easter-over

April 8, 2012

Today we are celebrating “Easter-over”, a non-denominational hybrid of Passover and Easter. The beginning of the meal features classic matzoh ball soup, leading up to a salad of mache and figs, herb roasted leg of lamb, roasted new potatoes and vegetables, and ending with an array of Passover desserts.

This year, in addition to the sponge cake, made from my grandmother’s recipe and cooled upside down on a glass bottle, there are homemade coconut macaroons with a tiny chocolate center, and chocolate matzo brittle.

Matzo brittle is a fairly recent concoction, and not the type of thing I would normally make. I balk at things that start with processed ingredients, and with no disrespect to our state’s acting first lady, the idea of “Semi-Homemade” is unappealing. Yet, something made me want to try this one, and I am glad I did!
It is easy, yet a little messy, and absolutely addictive, regardless of what your heritage might be!

Matzo Brittle

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

Cover 2 baking sheets with aluminum foil, including the edges.( you will thank me for this later) and then lay a piece of parchment paper on each pan.

Lay out sheets of plain matzo, using broken pieces to fill any gaps.

In a heavy sauce pan, melt 2 sticks of butter, and 1 cup of brown sugar, stirring until melted together. Allow the mixture to bubble up for about 3 minutes, stirring constantly.

Remove it from the pan and pour it over the matzo, covering each piece evenly.

Put the pans in the oven, and bake for about 15 minutes. The mixture will bubble up.

Remove the pans from the oven, and sprinkle each one with a bag of chocolate chips. Pop back in the oven for about 5 minutes, and then use a spatula to spread the chocolate evenly over the matzo.

Allow to cool, and then break into pieces.

Try not to taste it, or there won’t be any left for the guests.

To all of our readers around the world,Happy Easter-over! May you enjoy a wonderful celebration of the Spring season surrounded by friends and loved ones.

Enjoy!


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