We’re off to visit my older daughter and her husband for a Passover seder and then to relax and enjoy their company for the rest of the weekend. I’m not particularly religious, but I do enjoy my Jewish holidays – all those sweets at Rosh Hashonah (our New Year), salads and blintzes to break the fast after Yom Kippur, latkes and BBQ brisket at Chanukah, hamentashen (great cookies filled with poppy seeds or a paste of dates, apricots and nuts), and roast lamb and a million other goodies at Passover. Food is central to all my holiday celebrations. In fact, I had a friend in high school, who was the class clown and so I was very surprised when I bumped into him many years later to find out that he became a minister. After the usual “whatever happened to….” We got to talking about other things and at some point, he told me that he could convert me. After much back and forthing “no you can’t”, “yes I can” I told him that my sense of who I am is focused more around food than theology. I love celebrating Christmas with my friends and have wonderful memories of baked ham and melt in your mouth desserts. I have in my day, painted, hid and found many an Easter egg, but I can never give up my kugels, chicken and matzo ball soup….
But I digress, because really this post is about all the hurry and chaos we feel before holidays. Usually for me it’s the shopping, cleaning, cooking and setting the table that keeps me frantic, but this year we’re going to my honey’s parents for the first seder and my daughter’s for the second. So no cooking for me, at least not until I get to Halifax and help my daughter out! That said, I still have laundry to do, clothes to pack and a house to get ready for the Passover I will return to. It lasts a week and we don’t eat leavened breads or anything made with regular flour for that matter. So I have to put those things away and bring out the matzoh.
Culinary in the Desert. Joe made a delicious looking orange chipotle chicken dish and I decided to experiment with the ingredients and create a roasted salmon version. It was quick to make, easy to prepare and best of all delicious. So I thought I’d share it with you just in case you’re having people visiting with you for more than just the big feast. It’s great as part of a brunch buffet or with a salad for a simple lunch or late supper.