Passover is one of the most widely-observed Jewish holidays. This year, Passover will begin in the evening of Saturday, March 27 and end the evening of Sunday, April 4. This year, as we honor our ancestors and celebrate our resilience, we will also reflect on the resilience and wisdom of our elders.
“Passover symbolizes hope in the midst of hardship, and as we celebrate our ancestors we will also reflect upon the past year and the lessons we have learned,” says Mike Silverman, Chief Executive Officer of Heritage Pointe, a senior living community offering exceptional lifestyles in the Jewish tradition. “It is also an opportunity to honor those we serve at Heritage Pointe as well as find opportunities to enrich their lives.”
Heritage Pointe will celebrate the weeklong event with many important and beloved rituals, including serving a traditional Seder on the first two nights of Passover. “Our Seder feast will include many favorite Passover dishes,” Mike says. “While there will be differences this year in order to ensure the health and safety of everyone attending, it is sure to be a meaningful evening.”
Because many families are still practicing social distancing, Mike suggests blending tradition with technology in order to be “together” during this time.
“Even if we can’t physically be present in the same room, it’s still possible to have a meaningful Seder with our loved ones,” he says. “FaceTime, Zoom and other video chat programs can be used so that families can celebrate the spirit of this holy holiday.”
Here are some meaningful ways that family members can honor their elders during this year’s Passover celebrations:
- If your senior loved one lives in your home or near you, enlist the help of family members to help rid the house of chametz, swap dishes, and clean.
- Your senior loved one may not be comfortable shopping at the store for ingredients, so order items online and have them delivered right to their door.
- During the Seder feast, ask your senior loved one to lead the parts that are most meaningful to them.
- Include your loved one’s favorite traditional recipes in the Seder meal.
- Adapt chairs with pillows and cushions to ensure seniors are able sit comfortably for the whole Seder.
- Ask senior relatives to contribute items to the Seder that have great meaning for them, such as a matzah cover or Seder plate.
- Encourage children to ask senior relatives about what Passover means to them as well as how the holiday was celebrated when they were kids. This is a wonderful opportunity for the younger generation to gather wisdom and insights from their elders.
Heritage Pointe’s Favorite Passover Recipes
Looking for inspiration for this year’s Seder feast? Below you’ll find some of our community’s favorite traditional Passover foods. We hope they inspire you to celebrate in your own special way this year. More recipes can be found at My Jewish Learning.
Classic Potato Kugel
- 8 medium Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and coarsely shredded
- 2 medium-large onions, coarsely shredded
- 5 large eggs
- 3/4 cup matzo meal
- 1/2 Tbsp salt
- 2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tsp garlic powder
- Paprika for sprinkling
- Thick sea salt
- 1/3 cup olive oil
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. When oven is preheated, add 1/3 cup olive oil to a 9×13 Pyrex dish and put into the oven to heat up.
Whisk eggs together in a large bowl. Add shredded potato, onion, matzo meal, salt, pepper and garlic powder. Mix until combined.
When oil has been heating for about 10 minutes, remove from the oven. Add a small spoonful of the potato mixture and if it starts sizzling, it is hot enough. If not, put it back in the oven for a few minutes. When oil is ready, add the entire potato mixture and spread in an even layer using an offset spatula or large spoon. Sprinkle sweet or hot paprika on top and a sprinkle of thick sea salt.
Bake for 40-50 minutes until crispy around the edges and golden brown on top. Allow to cool slightly before cutting into squares. Serve warm or room temperature.
- 2 Tbsp barbecue sauce
- 1 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1 sliced sweet onion
- 6 chopped carrots
- 3 lbs. potatoes, quartered
- 20 oz Farbrengen, Manischewitz or other very sweet wine
- 1 12 oz bottle chili sauce
- 5-7 lbs. brisket
- Garlic salt (optional)
- Onion salt (optional)
Sprinkle seasonings over meat and rub in lightly. Sear the meat in a 500-degree oven for 10 minutes on each side. Combine liquids and vegetables, pour over meat, cover and cook at 350 degrees for three hours. Freezes well.
Pomegranate Candied Walnut Charoset
- 4 gala apples, peeled and diced
- 1 cup pomegranate seeds
- 1/3 cup Manischewitz
- 1/3 cup pomegranate juice
- 1 tsp lemon or orange zest (optional)
- 1 cup walnut halves
- 4 cups vegetable oil
- ¼ cup sugar
- 2 tsp cinnamon
Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Whisk together sugar and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon in a bowl.
In a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat, heat oil to 350 degrees. Fry walnuts until golden brown, about 30 seconds, being careful not to burn. Using a slotted spoon, transfer walnuts from skillet to bowl containing sugar mixture. Toss walnuts in sugar, then spread on baking sheet. Cool 15 minutes, then chop roughly.
Combine nuts, remaining 1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, apples, pomegranate seeds, zest, wine and pomegranate juice. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
ROOTED IN JEWISH TRADITION & CULTURE.
Founded more than 30 years ago, Heritage Pointe provides the highest quality assisted living and memory care services to seniors in Orange County. Welcoming to those of all faiths, Heritage Pointe is Orange County’s only senior community rooted in Jewish culture, tradition and values.
For those who need some level of support to live their best lives, Heritage Pointe inspires independence and wellness through an extraordinary lifestyle, high-quality care and rich traditions. It’s a trusted, joyful community offering a lifestyle filled with possibilities – wherever a Resident may be on their senior living journey.
Our one-of-a-kind, nonprofit community is open to people of all backgrounds and faiths. Our mission is focused on our Residents and their independence, health, safety, comfort and happiness. Heritage Pointe has deep roots in this community and is committed to providing Residents with the best possible lifestyle and care both now and well into the future.
Call for more information at 949.284.8980 or visit our website.