Torah Tidbits

24 July 2014 / 26 Tammuz 5774
Issue 1039
Shabbat Parshat Tzav-Hagadol-Shmini
March 21, 2013

Portion of the Portion

PESACH AND THE HOME

“Where will you be for the seder?”
“I’m making the seder at home and my married kids are coming with the grandchildren?”
“I’m going to be at my grandmother’s home and all my aunts and uncles will be there.”
“My sister and I are making the seder together at her home.”
Pesach is a time when families try to be together.
In one of the Torah reading read on Pesach (Sh’mot 12:46), we are told that the Korban Pesach should be eaten B’VAYIT ECHAD YEI’ACHEL, LO TOZI MIN HABAYIT… CHUTZA - by a single group, meaning in one house, BAYIT
A piece I happened to see in the newly revised edition of The Jonathan Sack’s Haggada that has just been published by Maggid books (Koren Publishers Jerusalem) relates to this topic. I have not yet seen the Haggada, but I was sent a sample text from it and even though it was only a few pages it has whetted my appetite to have this Haggada accompany my eating of the matza on Seder night. I am sure that the thought-provoking essays by Rabbi Sacks will stimulate the discussion around the Seder table.
Rabbi Sacks explains that “Families are a source of immense strength, but they can also be the source of narrowness, nepotism, and indifference to the world outside. There is a potential conflict between the family and the wider concerns that are needed to build a society of justice and compassion. For that reason a Jewish home must always be open - to the hungry, the lonely, and visitors. Avraham and Sara, waiting at their tent to provide food and shelter to passersby, are an enduring symbol of this Jewish value. “Greater is hospitality”, said the Sages, “than welcoming the Divine Presence” (Shabbat 127a). The Hebrew letter BET, whose name also means “house”, is open at one side, to show that a Jewish home must always be open to the needy.”
That is why the seder includes an invitation, KOL DICHFIN YEITEI V’YEICHOL, anyone who is hungry should come and eat. So, when we are eating together with our own families, let us not forget those of our brethren who have no families here - lone soldiers, singles who still have not been able to start their own family, older adults whose children and grandchildren may be far away. When we are remembering - let us remember to make a place for them at our Pesach home.

HOME-COOKED CARROT KUGEL
1 cup grated raw carrot (tightly packed)
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup shredded apple
1/4 cup red wine
1/2 tsp grated lemon peel
4 egg whites, stiffly beaten
1/2 cup potato flour
4 egg yolks
2 Tbsp lemon juice

Combine well the raw carrot, sugar, potato flour, shredded apple, egg yolks, red wine, lemon juice and lemon peel. Fold in the stiffly eaten egg whites. Turn into a well-oiled 1 quart casserole. Bake in a moderate oven (375F) for 35 minutes or until done. Serve hot or cold. Serves 6 at 161 calories each serving.

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