Adding new spice to your Seder Plate

As you are considering additions to your seder plate (along with the orange, olives, and tomatoes of years past), we wanted to let you know that some will be adding either a bar of soap or hand sanitizer as a reminder of our need to play a role in our own safety/redemption. Two members of our congregation, Kenan and Sojourn, want to invite you to add ginger root to your seder plate to remind us of the need to support people of Asian descent who are currently experiencing increased hatred and racism as a result of the pandemic.  Please see Sojourn's note, below.


To my Jewish Family, Friends and Synagogue Community:


I hope this message finds you and loved ones in health and peace, I am sorry for anyone who has lost loved ones, become unemployed, or is going through various difficult situations in this uncertain and scary time due to the fast-spreading of covid-19. This year’s Passover will indeed be a different night than the others where a lot of us won’t be able to celebrate this special occasion with family or friends. I hope we will find ways to reminisce the journey of walking out of Egypt from the hardship of slavery to earn the precious freedom. The quarantine life comes with many changes to our accustomed lifestyles and let this Seder be filled with meaning and celebration, knowing that we are never alone because Hashem is with us. 


With this opportunity, I would also love to suggest please considering placing a ginger root on your Seder plate next to the orange or olive this year to support Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders who are experiencing increased hatred with the growing fear of covid-19. I hear about Asian community members who experience verbal or physical attacks in America and globally on a regular basis. Placing a ginger root on the Seder plate is a reminder to support this marginalized community and to show our compassion and understanding as well as a stand against racism and hatred towards this community. 


The reason we recommend ginger root is because it’s similar to horseradish with a strong spicy taste, a reminder about the taste of slavery in Egypt; ginger root can also serve as a reminder of the rejuvenation of Spring. Ginger root is one of the common ingredients used in Asian cuisine and ginger tea is a popular home remedy. On a side note, we tested out making kosher for Passover fortune cookies by replacing the flour with matzah meal which did not come out as expected; therefore, we would like to suggest an alternative of ginger root which should be easily available. Thank you very much for your support!

Sojourn Wei

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