Heading towards the zero hour
This morning I shredding and sliced out horseradish for the maror. The giant root got reduced to just three sandwich bags of maror. I don’t think it’s that hot a root. I wasn’t screaming while the food processor was doing it’s stuff. I was yelling while I was transferring the processed root from the processor into the bags.
My kids and my husband think that I’m slightly daft to make radish roses, but there is something irrationally important about making the table as nice as my mother did for so many years. During all of the hours I have been spending getting ready for Passover I have thought often about the many hours I spent as a kid working with my parents getting their home and table ready for this holiday over the years. The work feels like a long conversation with both my mother and my father that started when I was teeny.
This is how to make a soup taste rich. This is how to get a higher yield from your egg whites. This is how to slice meat thin. This is how to set a table. What are ways to make this meal feel special? This is how Ida Pascal baked a cake. This is Mildred Jacobs’s frum sister in law’s cake. These are Milton’s mother’s matza balls. My mother’s mother used to whip dish pans full of egg whites for her mother to add to Passover cakes. My father’s mother know only how to bake one cake, a Passover sponge cake. This is the melody my grand father used to chant the haggadah. This is the melody(?) my father’s grand father used to sing Va yihi b’ chatzi ha layla. Parsley and a few radish roses look nice on the meat platter. Be generous in how much you serve. Use nice serving utensils.
The lemon cake is just the best. It makes me look like a great baker. The batter is the consistency of shaving cream before you bake it. It’s so light and bakes up really tall.The top was ugly so I made camouflage.
Lemon custard and sliced strawberries work well to hide an ugly cake top.
Here are tonight’s desserts.
The house is clean.Tonight’s meal is cooked. Most of tomorrow’s meal is cooked as well. My sister is on her way. Tonight we re experience both slavery and liberation. I love how the labors of the past weeks help me to understand that liberation in a visceral way.
A zissen Paysakh to all – a sweet Passover.