Cooking with Love

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Purim!!

The story of Purim is one of the happy stories in the Judaiac history. The story is pretty much a fairytale story and I think you will like it.
We have a beautiful orphan child, named Esther.
We have Esther's uncle Mordechai, who raised her as his daughter, a honest and kind man.
We have a king - Ahasuerus, king of Persia and he was pretty much fed up with his wife Vashti so he made it known throughout the kingdom that he was seeking a new wife for his harem.
Once he saw beautiful Esther - he fell in love (of course he had no knowledge she was jewish) and married her.
And of course - how can we have a fairytale without an evil witch? But in our case it is evil Haman. Haman was the kings advisor and hater of Mordechai as the latter refused to bow to Haman.
He came up with an idea to kill all jews in Persia, an idea that the king didn't mind.
Upon hearing this terrible news Mordechai he begged Esther to speak to the king. Speaking to the king could lead to her death as 1) he would find out she was a jew. 2) she was not summoned into his chambers - a crime that was punished by death.
So - Esther fasted for three days and then courageously went to the king and told him of Haman's evil plot - revealing that she is a jew.
Of course there is a happy end - Haman was hanged and killed and the jews went celebrating in the streets.
All this happened in the jewish month of "adar" -"" so once Adar has begens - we must rejoice".
So we dress up in costumes (like halloween) and get our groggers out - for when reading the book of Esther, everytime Hamans name is mentioned - we must make as much noise as possible.
One of the mitzvah's (good deed) of the holiday is making a care package for the needy. At least 2 must be made and given. Over the years it has turned into a tradition and children bring packages to school and divide them amongst themselves. The more orthodox jews bring it to the needy.
Another holiday tradition is Hamentaschen - or what we call in hebrew - "haman's ears".
Have a great holiday and pictures of the care package + costumes and fun will come later - I promise.