My Sedar: far from normal. Let’s just say I have a father who loves to hear himself sing in Hebrew. Chag Sameach!
Lots of Passover recipes are submitted on the web this time of year. Those of us who celebrate the Jewish holiday, try to come up with something new and different to break up the dry dense monotomy of the typical Passover desserts.
For those who are not familiar with the dietary restrictions of the holiday, bare with me, because there are many. During the eight days of Passover the basic foods that are not allowed are bread, rice, wheat, rye, oats, barley, pasta, corn, peas, beans, peanuts, and foods made with these items. Observant Jews do not even keep these items in their homes during the holiday.
Considering all these food restrictions, Passover isn’t really known for its sugary delights. But kosher desserts do exist!
Purim is a holiday that commemorates how Queen Esther (the beautiful woman of every story) saved her people’s (The Jews) toucheses (tushes, bums, butts) from Haman (the bad guy). Haman was Persian and well, filthy rich. When he was appointed Prime Minister, Esther’s cousin Mordecai refused to give him respect- for religious
reasons of course (this is no telenovela, we are talking about an ancient story here). Haman, the rich man he was, showed off his wealth. He wore a big medallion on his neck that had a picture of an idol, and Mordecai was scared people would think he was bowing to the idol too- a big no, no for Jews (they are forbidden to worship Idols).
Haman, was furious- so furious, he wanted to rid the Jews all together. When Esther and Mordecai learned of the plot to kill them plus all the other Jews in Persia, Esther told on Haman to her husband, the King Achashverosh. Pretty bold of her, since with the King you didn’t approach without an invitation, even if its your husband (think it’s like you or me trying to walk the Red Carpet on Oscar night). Well, after a banquet, some soul-searching, and finding out Esther was really Jewish- Achashverosh reconsidered.
Which brings me to the triangle cookie called Hamentash, or Hamentashen when you have a bag full. As you might notice these Jewish pastries are named after Haman, the villan of Purim. Hamantashen symbolizes the Jew’s victory and thus resembles “Haman’s ear.” But, who has ears shaped like triangles? (Yeah, I was thinking the same thing.) Some people claimed that Haman’s ears were deformed and others try to make a connection that triangle hat he always wore covered his ears. Anyways, back to the King reconsidering the tables turned and instead of all the Jews, Haman and his ears got the axe, which comes from the old-time practice of cutting off the ears of the soon to be executed.