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Why is this night different from all other nights?
Why is this night different
from all other nights?

Passover is steeped in a ancient traditions centering around prayers, rituals, and holiday dinners to celebrate this most revered of Jewish holidays.

A movable feast, the dates for Passover vary from year to year.

This year, Passover begins at sundown on Monday, April 22, 2024 and ends at nightfall on Tuesday, April 30, 2024.

The story of Passover

Centering around the biblical Moses and his quest to bring the Jewish people into the Promised Land. Passover commemorates the night Jewish families watched and waited as God brought his powerful wrath upon Egypt.

As described in the book of Exodus. the angel of death spared Jewish households that had smeared their doorways with blood from a sacrificial lamb that marked a devotion to the one true God.

Today, the dramatic event is retold by millions of Jewish families worldwide who happily gather at the dinner table in early spring for the annual Seder to retell the Passover story, and to relive the joy of an ultimate escape from slavery to freedom.

DID YOU KNOW? Passover trivia & fun facts

Earth Day celebrations
Things go better with kosher Coca Cola.

• Passover is considered the most popular of Jewish holidays with 70% of the faithful claiming enthusiastic participation in a Passover seder.

• During Passover, Coca-Cola is made kosher for Passover. Sugar is used instead of corn syrup, because corn is not considered kosher for Passover.

• In the US, Maxwell House brand coffee first began printing Haggadahs (the prayer books used during the Passover seder) to its Jewish clientele in the 1930's. Today, the Maxwell House Haggadah is the most widely distributed Haggadah in the United States with over 50 million copies in circulation.

• The world's biggest seder is celebrated in ... Kathmandu, Nepal? The location is not surprising, given its popularity with young Israeli packbackers and Jewish expats. Every year, more than 1,500 guests arrive to gather for the seder requiring months of preparation including shipping in 1000 bottles of wine and over 1000 pounds of matzo from Israel and the US.

• The news of Abraham Lincoln's assassination in April 1865 found many American Jews at synagogue celebrating Passover. The holiday of joy turned to sadness as temples were quickly draped in black. According to historical records, Passover songs were also substitured with mournful Yom Kippur hymns, and rabbis set aside their sermons as congregants wept openly about their fallen President.

The Last Supper, in which Christ met with his disciples for the last time, is believed to have been a Passover seder.

also see in Holiday & Observances -> NYC Celebrate Israel Parade

Passover recipes

Passover matzahPassover includes Passover songs and readings from The Haggadah, and the centerpiece of the holiday -- the Seder meal celebrated on the first night of Passover.

Foods symbolic of the holiday usually follow biblical instructions for serving bitter herbs to recount a bitter existence as enslaved people, as well as unleavened bread or matzah (which commemorates the hurried escape from Egypt with little time for yeast bread to rise.) Four glasses of Kosher wine are also a ritual way to symbolize God's four promises to the Jewish people.

The main feast during the festival is usually a brisket although some families may opt for a other traditional holiday feasts such as roast chicken or roast turkey. The Seder dinner is ended on a sweet note is with customary Passover seder desserts which by tradition are flour-less or unleavened.

Braised Brisket
brisket(serves 6-8)

1 large brisket, about 5-6 lbs.
cake meal (matzah flour)
vegetable oil
6 medium potatoes, thickly sliced
6 large carrots, thickly sliced
4 large onions, peeled and thinly sliced
2 cups red wine
3 cups beef broth
Salt, pepper, and garlic powder to taste
fresh parsley sprigs for garnish

1. Dust both sides of the brisket with cake meal and set aside.
2. Heat oil in a large skillet and sear the brisket on both sides until well browned.
3. Place brisket in a large roaster pan and add wine and broth.
4. Cover the pan and place in a pre-heated 350 (F) degree oven for 5 minutes. Reduce the temperature to 275 (F) and allow the brisket to braise for 90 minutes.
5. Add potatoes and carrots, recover the pan, and allow to cook for about an hour until vegetables and meat are tender.
6. Remove roast from oven and allow to rest for about 15 minutes, then thinly slice against the grain.
7. Place brisket slices on a large platter, and spoon over the onions. Arrange the potatoes and carrots around the platter and garnish with fresh parsley sprigs.

coconut macaroonsAlmond Coconut Macaroons
(make about 3 dozen)

3 cups sweetened coconut
4 egg whites
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees (F).
2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper
3. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and mix well. Drop mixture by rounded tablespoons onto the baking sheet.
4. Place in oven and bake for about 30 minutes or until macaroons are golden brown.
5. Let cool and serve. .

More about Passover around the Web:

Find out more about the most widely observed custom on the Jewish calendar -- and what makes this night different from all other nights -- with recipes, songs, video clips, e-cards and kids' resources...

Jacob Richman's Hot Sites - Passover - One-stop browsing in a huge, reliable link list to the holiday by category including Passover story articles, recipes, art, history, e-cards, clip art, online haggadah exhibits, audio and midi files, along with an international guide to sites in Hebrew, Portuguese, Russian, German, French and several other languages. - Recipes - Kosher for Passover favorites from chicken soup, gefilte fish and challah, to more than a dozen choices for the main chicken or turkey feast; and featuring traditional side dishes including latkes, kugel and kishke, dairy dishes and desserts, and a great cache of related links.

Passover - Here's deep background on the traditional Seder, together with Q&A on why is this night different?, kid tips, recipes, and a small collection of Passover greeting cards.



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