Monday, April 8, 2024

What you REALLY need for Pesach

 Pesach's almost here! And the stores are getting full of special foods for Pesach. And isn't that so exciting?!
But then, you start to pile them into your shopping cart, and you suddenly realize that the cost really ADDS UP FAST. Uh oh. What about that little thing called "a budget"?

Here's the thing. Pesach is ONE week. So if you can make it one week without buying premade cakes and cookies and crackers and who knows what else, you'll save a lot of money.

There are some things you really do need for Pesach:


Grape Juice or Wine

Maror (this can be lettuce! But I also bought a small piece of horseradish for about 6 NIS at Yesh)

Karpas (Potatoes or Celery)

Charoset (I always have to improvise this one because of my nut allergy and other family members' uncooked apple allergies. (So much fun!) Last year I made a stewed fruit charoset - chopped apples stewed with cinnamon, raisins, dates, and grape juice. I might have put some dried apricots in there but that's no longer an option for me due to another allergy popping up. It worked out well, though, so I'll probably do something similar again.)


Other basics for things you like to eat.

I make sure we have these foods available:

Chicken (whatever's on sale leading up to the holiday)

Beef if there's a good sale or if I stocked up another time and there's some in my freezer labeled Kosher for Pesach

Fish fillets if there's a good sale or if I stocked up another time and there's some in my freezer labeled Kosher for Pesach





Cream Cheese

Basic fruits and vegetables (including potatoes and onions because we MUST have potato kugel)

Ingredients for brownies not already listed above: potato starch, cocoa powder, sugar, baking powder, chocolate chips

If we buy tomato paste and cheese, we can make matzah pizza or matzah lasagna, so we try to make sure there's some of that around.

I like to make a HUGE vegetable soup at the beginning of the chag and use it for the chag and also several days of Chol Hamoed - this way there's food around.

I am committed to avoiding making anything that takes too much time or energy so that also will keep my expenses down.

Everything else is extra. My family really likes eating kneidlach and pesach rolls so having a couple packages of matzah meal on hand is good - but I don't personally make these anymore because my wheat allergy gets activated when I touch wheat-based products and any matzah meal dust in the air is hazardous to me...

I personally stock up at Pesach on things that are not going to contain traces of wheat at this time, but you don't need to if you don't have a reason to! So don't go crazy. 

If it's been a tough year for you financially, you can do this simply. Just make sure you have brownies on hand to keep everyone happy - make the recipe I posted and you can't go wrong! Warning: You may have to make a batch every day😀.

Do you have other "must-haves" for Pesach? Let me know!

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