A COVID safe guide to Passover

Kellyn Doerr, Culture Staff Writer

We’re back with yet another COVID safe Jewish holiday guide, this time around; Passover. Chag Pesach Sameach bitches. 

The wonderful holiday that is Passover. This time commemorates the exodus of the Jews and liberation from Egypt. 

Passover truly highlights tradition, it might not be as upbeat as singing Adam Sandler songs but prayer and singing with your loved ones is key, as well as eating foods and drinking wines that are used as tokens of remembrance of this time.

Alek Fleury

COVID is still on the rise and it’s important to continue to stay vigilant and responsible on days like these when all you want to do is be at a huge table celebrating with family and friends, the way it’s supposed to.

We have 7 days of celebration, so think of it as 7 different times we get to celebrate this Jewish tradition and feel close to the community that cares about each other so much and how far they’ve come. 

Use this guide to celebrate in a COVID friendly way this year and you’ll be back to yelling at your aunts and uncles soon enough, around the same table. 

Don’t forget to put the lambs blood on your door, so you get…passed over. *ba dum tsss 

Just kidding, please don’t. 

     1.  Let’s start off strong – What to do! 

There are many important aspects to what can and should be done during Passover. A lot of it has to do with prayer and remembrance and thankfully, most of them are COVID friendly! 

YouTube is amazing for many reasons but listening to readings of the Torah is especially helpful during this time. If you don’t want to read alone or can’t, listening to an audio version can be helpful and alleviate any lonely feelings you might be having! 

Haggadah is also a book that is read during Seder, the meal that is held on usually the first and or second night of Passover. This book is very important and there are videos and audios also on YouTube, you can find it in either Hebrew or English.  

You can also listen to some great Passover music, The Maccabeats never miss and have an absolute banger of an anthem, ‘Dayenu,’ if you’re looking for an upbeat celebratory song as well as ‘Mah Nishtanah’. 

     2.   For all my adult participants out there, it’s time for  – What to drink?

Wine is a very important part of Passover. Each adult drinks four cups of wine to signify the four expressions of deliverance promised by God, talking about the deliverance from slavery for the jews. 

So although it seems like a good excuse to drink your heart out, remember all of these small details play a big role in tradition and remembrance!

Don’t forget to leave one out, untouched for Elijah. *wink *wink 

Two popular wine brands that fit kosher limits and follow Passover guidelines are Manischewitz and Kedem. And thankfully for you, they’re pretty inexpensive! 

And although these are both safe choices, there are a ton of other wines you can enjoy with loved ones, or yourself! 

Here is a link to a great list of wines for Passover you can go grab right now! Best part? Most won’t hurt your wallet.  

Don’t forget to cheers your family or loved ones over Zoom or facetime when consuming responsibly. 

     3.   We’ve made it to the best part of this guide – What to eat! 

The meal, although delicious and plentiful, is very important in terms of tradition yet again, it’s called Seder.

There are six components to the passover meal that need to be included and it symbolizes six different parts of the story when the Israelites were slaves in Egypt. 

Here is a link to the original guide, pasted below for your convenience.  

  1. Chazeret – such as a romaine lettuce or endive, representing the bitterness of slavery
  2. Beitzah – a hard boiled egg, the symbol of mourning
  3. Charoset – a sweet, brown paste made of fruit and nuts, representing the mortar that the Israelites made for building bricks
  4. Maror – a bitter herb, made from horseradish, similar to Chazeret they symbolise the bitter suffering
  5. Z’roa – a lamb bone, representing the lamb that was scarified and taken to the temple the night before the Israelites left Egypt
  6. Karpas – Celery stalks or parsley dipped into a bowl of salted water. These symbolise the spring harvest and tears when they were slaves

Some great foods and meals to cook during this time include: matzo ball soup, gefilte fish, brisket, chicken and potatoes.

Remember, during this time you’re only supposed to consume Matzah, not regular bread. This is because the Israelites made bread for their journey out of Egypt, but could not wait for the bread to rise, so we honor them by doing the same. 

It’s hard to be celebrating with just your household, or even alone, but using this guide, you are able to find happiness and comfort through tradition and community, even if it is over Zoom! 

We’re not in the clear with COVID just yet, as vaccines come in things are looking positive. But, large social gatherings are still prohibited and we want to keep each other safe and healthy so we can celebrate even bigger and better, next year.