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Passover (Pesach in Hebrew) is a holiday celebrating freedom and family as we remember the Exodus from Egypt more than 3,000 years ago. The main observances of this holiday center around a special home service, the seder, which includes a festive meal, the prohibition on eating chametz, and the eating of matzah.

Yizkor Service

During this Passover festival, we continue our tradition of jointly held Yizkor services with Temple Israel of Hollywood. Passover Yizkor Shabbat Awakening Service will be held on Saturday, April 3, 2021. Click here for more details.
 

Food Ordering

Kosher for Passover!
The first Seder would be Saturday night March 27. Kol Ami will hold our Second night community Seder online on Sunday night March 28 at 6 pm.
If you want to order a Kosher for Passover Meals, the American Jewish University catering will be preparing and delivering this year! (They have catered our Community Seder for several years.) Orders must be in by March 17. Food will be delivered (anywhere in a 40 mi radius to AJU) to your doorstep. (Sorry Palm Springs and San Diego!)
 

How To Prepare For Passover

Passover is the most widely observed Jewish holiday. Some of you may be wondering how to observe the holiday, especially if you have never made a Seder yourself. In an effort to help you celebrate, below are some resources to help you observe Passover. 

With a little preparation you can still have a great Passover Seder and experience, Zoom with family and friends and even join our Temple Passover Virtual Seder on the Second night of Passover, March 28, 2021 at 6:00 PM.
REGISTER HERE
 

Step by Step Resource
 
 
Haggadah
First you will need a Haggadah. If you don’t have one at home to use, there are many online resources to share. 

The Central Conference of American Rabbis has lots of different Haggadot for both adults and families with kids for purchase.

They also have several that are free flip books, and some with visuals that you can screen share for a Zoom Seder with family and friends. Also, several Haggadot are available as eBook downloads for your kindle or e-reader.

Haggadot.com is a website that will help you make your own Haggadah! BUT it also has many Haggadot downloadable for free including a comedy Haggadah, feminist/women Seders, secular Haggadah, JewBelong Haggadah, Introductory Haggadah, and even LGBTQ Haggadah, as well as Haggadot for young children and more.

For the traditionalist among you: go to Sefaria.org for the traditional Haggadah text for in both Ashkenazic and Sephardic traditions with commentary.

If you need help chanting the four questions. Here is a link to learn them. 

Here is an online link from our Reform Movement/Union for Reform Judaism on how to lead a Seder and the various sections and some thoughtful questions to help you navigate.
 
Passover Music
There are a lot of ways to bring the sounds of the seder into your home this year, no matter how you are celebrating!

This collection of Seder Songs from Transcontinental Music is available as a digital download, and even includes a recording of Rabbi Chaiken’s version of Eliyahu Hanavi!

This page from the Union for Reform Judaism discusses and links to music to certain key passages from the Hagaddah, as does this page from My Jewish Learning.

And for those who use Spotify, you can find many, many playlists there as well! Try this one from PJ Library for all ages , or this one from the URJ for adults! You can also search for “Passover” and explore playlists that way!

Catered Passover Meals
Now If you are not a cook, here are some links to places in Los Angeles that are making and selling Passover meals.

In the City:
Canter's Deli – Not Kosher
 
 
Don’t forget to get Matzah. Be sure it is Matzah for Passover. Most major markets are amply stocked with Matzah including Trader Joe’s, Ralph’s, Von’s Pavilions, Whole Foods and Gelson’s.  
 
 
The Seder Plate?

As you know the Seder plate has special ingredients. It is not the plate itself that matters; it is what is on the plate. So, don’t fret if you don’t have a specially decorated Seder plate.

Roasted Egg - Beitzah: This is a reminder of the holiday special sacrifice in the ancient temple which was always an egg. This can be and should be a hard-boiled egg that you put in the over for a few minutes. (Don’t leave it in there as it will explode if left too long!)

Roasted Lamb Shank Bone - Z’roah: This is to represent God’s mighty arm that rescued us from Egypt. It also is a reminder of the lamb that was sacrificed as the Passover offering and the lamb/ram’s blood that was put on the doorpost of the Israelite homes to protect them from the final plague. If you can find a fresh or frozen lamb shank bone at the store or butcher — roast it in the oven for at least 30 minutes. You don’t need the whole lamb shank with meat… only the bone. If you can’t find a lamb shank-some family use a chicken leg bone or chicken neck. Others will use a roasted beet as a substitute since it also will leave red marks like the blood on the door posts.

Greens - Karpas: This is traditionally parsley, used to signify the aspect of Passover that celebrates the Springtime. You can use any green vegetable or herb available. Some use celery. Others green onions/scallions. Some fresh cilantro, or sage. In Eastern Europe, greens weren’t always available, so they often used a potato.

Bitter Herb - Maror: Most people use horseradish. This can be in root form or already shredded and processed (Red or white) out of the jar. Try a non-traditional bitter herb like wasabi (if you eat kitniyot—soy is kitniyot).

Saltwater: This is symbolic of the tears of the Israelites in bondage, the salty sea that the Israelite crossed. Take a cup or bowl of water. Add copious amounts of salt. This is used for dipping the greens.

Charoset: Fruit and nut mixture to remind us of the mortar used for building the fortified cities the Israelites had to build for the Egyptians. Ashkenazic recipes often use nuts and apples and sweet kosher wine and cinnamon. Sephardic and Mizrachi recipes use dates, figs, pomegranate juice and seeds, oranges, sweet red kosher wine, and many other ingredients depending on location. See recipes above.

Lettuce or Chazeret: Some Seder plates have a place for Chazeret which is traditionally Romaine lettuce. There is a debate in the Talmud about what was the true bitter herb. The lettuce is used as part of the Hillel Sandwich (Matzah, Charoset and bitter herb). Try using endive for a charoset lettuce cup!

Most of all have fun. We need to remember the message of Passover this year more than ever. Redemption and freedom came to our ancestors who were enslaved in Egypt. Redemption and freedom will one day soon come to each of us and we will once again be able to freely go about our lives in health and well-being. When we say at the end of the Passover Seder, “Next year in Jerusalem," remember Jerusalem is not only a physical place, the eternal capital of the Jewish people, but Jerusalem is also a spiritual ideal of hope, perfection, well-being, and peace.

May we all soon be together in person to celebrate and laugh.

Music

Sun, April 18 2021 6 Iyyar 5781