Home > Uncategorized > What I Learned From Our Passover Seder by Debra H. Goldstein

What I Learned From Our Passover Seder by Debra H. Goldstein

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Confession: when I have more than four people, even if I put the food in my own bowls, I have the evening catered. This year, with only four breaking matzah and because I’ve become addicted to cooking competition TV shows, I decided to tackle the Seder myself. Here’s what I learned:

1) Timing is of the essence – don’t start heating, reheating, or cooking things for when the guests arrive – there’s a service to be done before dinner is served!
2) If you make chicken soup from scratch but add pre-made matzah balls and broth, stop there – an entire bag of wide noodles will soak up the soup even during a short service. In fact, it soaked it up faster than I could ladle the soup into bowls. Although the noodles and matzah balls were well seasoned, it is hard to serve soup when it no longer exists.
3) Don’t get excited and heat things up too early – meat resting is meat drying.
4) Amy Garber makes fantastic chopped liver. Thank G-d!
5) Mogen David and Maniwchewitz wine is sweet. Macaroons aren’t what I remember them as being from my childhood and they only put twelve pieces of candy in the dark chocolate jellied candy box now – but combining those twelve pieces with the dead macaroons can make a nice dessert platter especially if a fifth cup of wine is incorporated into the meal.
6) It’s all about family – who else would tolerate my cooking?
7) Cleaning up from four is much easier than fourteen or forty.

Anything to add from your Passover or Easter meals?

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  1. vweisfeld.com
    April 7, 2015 at 7:23 pm

    Hilarious! I totally understand the sentiment, but am more of a traditionalist, as long as it’s speedy! I made my own chicken soup in about 20 minutes and left it to do its thing while I went back to writing. Some hours later, I made matzo balls–another 20 minutes, and that was our Thursday night supper. What took the longest was taking the “soup chicken” off the bones for lunches later in the weekend. Thus, on Passover, technically, I served leftovers. The soup, a “new” lamb roast with onion & apricot, spring peas, and roast potato. We smiled recalling how when my late mother-in-law would visit during the holidays, she’d be assigned the chicken soup (to keep some control over the culinary excesses). She’d spend an entire morning chopping her onions and leave a coating of chicken fat on every kitchen surface. We miss her terribly. You’re right, Deb, family is all.

  2. Susan Koretzky
    April 6, 2015 at 7:27 pm

    Darn, i was with you most of the day and didn’t think to warn you about soup evaporation! Always keep a large can of Swanson’s chicken broth for emergencies like that — it may not be “home-made” but will get you by in a last minute pinch — it’s better than nothing! At that point, it can be doctored with spices to taste almost “real” 🙂 Meanwhile, please don’t fret over this — it sounds like the rest of your meal was spectacular — so, congratulations on a job well done! I am impressed with the fact that you attempted — woohoo!!

    • April 6, 2015 at 9:12 pm

      The irony – I had plenty of Chicken broth in the cupboard —- it was just beyond that point…and too comical as I was in serving mode.

  3. Kaye George
    April 6, 2015 at 11:15 am

    Easiest Easter dinner ever this year. DIL cooked everything and I brought rolls and salad, and some fudge. I love to cook for a big group of people! (Just too often.) I find it easier than cooking a small amount.

    • April 6, 2015 at 12:03 pm

      Maybe I’ll try that method next year ….. I’m good at carrying in things others make (I realize you made the salad and all….but)

      • Kaye George
        April 6, 2015 at 1:48 pm

        Oh no, I wasn’t clear! I bought the salad and the fudge–and the rolls.

  4. Anonymous
    April 6, 2015 at 8:16 am

    My addition: Always offer to bring the boiled eggs.

  5. April 6, 2015 at 7:18 am

    LOL, Debra. Perhaps you need to have all company meals catered!

    • April 6, 2015 at 12:02 pm

      Sadly, I think you are right. One of my son-in-laws once noted to his wife that he had never had a home-cooked meal at our home. She replied that he was blessed.

  6. Debbie Shevin
    April 6, 2015 at 6:48 am

    A cooking advice column by Debra to entertain me this morning. Who would have ever dreamed this would have happened? I’m loving it.

    • April 6, 2015 at 12:01 pm

      Glad to give you and others entertainment this fine morning. I’m still sobbing over the loss of the soup — it was so tasty before it evaporated.

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