The first night of Passover fell on a Monday, so we had a little children’s seder with the four of us. Haga and I were busy at work so didn’t have time to prepare much. I made the Harosetz out of peanut butter, apples and wine (yes, I know that Ashkenazim Jews are not supposed to have legumes because supposedly there is yeast in it, but I’m a reform Jew and I don’t believe that our religion was created for the sake of lawyers).
In the past, we mixed wassabi with ground daikon radish in order to simulate horseradish. This year I bought jarred horseradish, which was not as powerful as the wassabi-mixture or the true stuff, but still had a strong effect on my children.
We invited several friends for Passover seder on the Saturday (April 23rd) night. We invited 13 people, but one didn’t show up because he’s in Beijing and his boss just showed up (Jason), one because he was traveling (Jim), and one didn’t show because he’s the husband and I don’t know him (Feifei’s husband…whatever his name is). Also, two friends didn’t show up because they are big big dumb-asses (Gareth, Tavon). So we had 7 people over.
Some of the following is written so that I may remember important preparation details next year.
I went to the Jewish Center in Shanghai to get Matzoh (2kg total) , Matzoh meal, and gefilte fish. My parents also sent some Matzoh, which was good because that gave us just enough to eat Matzoh every day of the week. Horseradish was available at the Euromart (in the warehouse). Parsley was available at the Summit Market. All other ingredients from local wet-market and Korean beef store. Got the extra tables from the kind people at the police mini-station inside our complex.
I prepared the Harosetz (with raisins, 2 mango, 3 apples, cinnamon, 1 cup of combined almonds, walnuts, wine). I made the matzoh balls (4 eggss > 1 cup m.meal + 4 Tbs soda water). Gefilte fish came in a can and was really good. I mixed jarred pickled beats with the morror to use as a topping. Chicken soup (boilled chicken 6 hours…1 chicken. 2011price=45rmb). Haga made the salmon (for next year, 1 salmon/10 adults). She made the beef&apple brisket stew (about 2-3 jin, 8 hours cook time). Boiled asparagus. Haga’s yam and apple pot dish. Chocolate covered matzoh and sliced pears for dessert.
The only problem with this whole thing was… the night before I had horrible stomach pains and up-all-night diarrhea. The next day I pretty much new it was not viral…my stomach was OK and didn’t have fever. But I had no energy and was extremely dehydrated. As I was gulping down sports drink, I accidentally let it go down the wrong pipe, which caused me to throw-up. So there was a real danger of having to cancel Passover. But I just decided that the show much go on. And with Haga’s help, the show did go on. I was not the most energetic leader. But I think I did an OK job all considering. I fulfilled the biblical commandment anyway.