April 22nd, 2008

storyteller doll

Passover Foods

Because I had done my grocery shopping later than usual, I didn't manage to buy some Passover foods I usually buy. That is probably a good thing. I did buy sesame seed candies, for example, but neither Wegman's nor Shopper's Food Warehouse had fruit slices. Neither had egg kichel, either, which is definitely a good thing since egg kichel bought is egg kichel eaten. More serious is the absence of orange marmalade. For years, I have bought one jar of marmalade for Passover, which then lasts me the rest of the year since I'm not really a big jam eater.

There was a good supply of borscht, at least, though that isn't specifically for Pesach as far as I'm concerned. See, my mother once bought a dozen cases of borscht (24 bottles to a case) at a public television auction so we ate it at least once a week for years. They now have clear borscht, without pieces of beets in it, by the way. In our house, the rule was that Dad got the first bowl (which was completely clear), I got the second (and whined about the few beets), Elliot got the third (but he tolerated beets) and Mom got the final bowl (and she liked beets). In my old age, I don't get what the big deal was, but I was a fussy kid.

I didn't like horseradish either when I was a kid and whined about the mandatory dose of it at the seder. Somewhere around college, I developed a taste for it, but only the white kind. While I like beets now, I don't see any reason to dilute the heat of horseradish with them. At any rate, it's essential to eating gefilte fish.

I think we ate chopped liver more than gefilte fish when I was growing up and my mother made good chopped liver. I remember that one year she decided it was too much work and took boughten chopped liver and doctored it a bit (mostly extra onions, I think). My aunt still declared that it was the best chopped liver and I got in trouble for telling her the truth about it.

Breakfast is the real problem during Pesach. Our usual treat when I was growing up was matzoh farfel pancakes. The recipe was from the only cookbook I ever saw Mom use and, while I have a copy of it, I'm way too lazy to make them. So I end up eating lots of strawberries and some matzoh with cream cheese. By the way, we always said if we ever had a dog, it would be named Farfel.

I liked Pesach a lot better when I was a kid and somebody else was doing the cooking for me.