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Mama Deb
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Mama Deb [userpic]
I actually have a tiny bit of work to do, so I'm procrastinating

What I thought were allergies turns out to be a mild cold. This is of the good. I mean, colds aren't good but they go away and this one isn't bad.

My rabbi just issued instructions for Pesach because it's complicated this year. The first seder falls on Saturday night. This creates a problem - we are required to eat challah (not the specific traditional sweet eggy bread, but true bread nevertheless - pita will do) for the Friday night and Saturday morning meals. We are also required to stop eating chometz by a specific time in the morning and to have our homes free of it an hour later. Plus, custom forbids eating matzah for 24 hours before the seder (and our family doesn't eat it from Purim on.)

One solution we've seen is to eat "egg matzah" - matzah made with eggs and apple juice instead of just water (and flour, of course.) This is technically "cake", but if you eat enough of it, it can equal bread. I was, frankly, hoping to do this as it would make life very easy.

Alas, it is not to be. Our rabbi's instructions are very clear. We have to use challah for both meals and he pretty much disapproves of egg matzah in general - it should only be used if someone needs to because it's softer or easier to digest.

Bear in mind, while he is very strict about a lot of things in his personal observance, he rarely makes pronouncements or imposes his observances on the whole community. An example would be the local eruv - he doesn't hold by it, but he has no objections to the congregation doing so, and many of us do. So if he has chosen to make these clear instructions, he has to have reasons, and we have to go along with it. He's a brilliant and thoughtful man who understands what sort of minyan he leads.

So, we're stuck.

I think we're going to be making "motzi" over a plastic sheet in the living room, carefully folding it up over the crumbs, taking it downstairs, shaking it out and tossing the sheet in a trashcan. Both times. Using pita bread because it has less crumbs.


That was what I did, one time. My rabbi didn't suggest the egg matzoh either. (One time I used a very little table and put it away in a big closet but that was unnecessarily elaborate.)

I had a friend who just couldn't handle the idea of bread in his house that close to Pesach, and he got permission to drink a certain amount of grape juice instead.

But really I didn't find it a huge problem the last year we did it.

The first year we did this, we were at my inlaws, and their shul provided kiddush both for the evening and the morning - challah rolls, wine and grape juice. It was sponsored by chaos_wrangler's parents, as I recall.

The second time, we were in our own apartment, in a house owned by non-Jews. We had the challah in the hallway. Our current landlady is Jewish so we need a different solution.

You're right, my parents did sponsor the morning kiddush, but I'm not sure about the evening before.

I'd forgotten about this, which is funny given that the "excuse" for my parents sponsoring kiddush that week was my birthday (erev pesach itself) & my getting a college honor.

I'm thinking of doing motzi on the porch, which is just outside the dining room...

It might be warm enough to eat Shabbat lunch outside. I've also heard the disposable-crumb-catcher approach before (paper or plastic).

That is what we are planning on doing... eating our meals outside. That way if there are any crumbs the birds will get them.

Y'know, just when I think the Catholic Church has a lot of ...interesting... rites and customs, I'm reminded that Judisism has an additional 2000+ year headstart.

Good luck in finding a solution that works for all. :)


4000 years of interpretations and reinterpretations and folks who think of debate as a hobby and a vocation.

Out of curiosity, what did he say about bedikat chametz?

Bedikat chametz is done Thursday night and biur (burning) is done on Friday morning.

Okay, for some reason I thought one wasn't allowed to have chametz after that.

Usually, that's the case (well, kind of. You can eat chametz until the end of the 4th hour on erev Pesach and the burning has to happen by the end of the fifth hour). This year, with the Shabbat issue, things are all moved around.

Oh, that *has* to be done Thursday night so you can burn it on Friday morning. And the Fast of the Firstborn is Thursday as well. This we already knew.

When this came up (for the first time, I think, since 1974) when I was in college, the Hillel rabbi suggested eating small, kazayis-sized rolls over Kleenex or the like and then flushing the remnants. And that is the plan we're going with this year, as well, as far as I know.

Yep, that's the plan. It works. It works well. And it means tasty challah on shabbat.

Just so you know, all this talk of food is making me long for:

a) Brisket
b) Matzo ball soup
c) Matzo-brie
d) Challah

Welcome to my livejournal. :)