Passover (Pesach)

Passover is the eight-day holiday celebrated each spring to mark God's liberation of the Israelites from Egyptian bondage. 

Jews are forbidden to eat bread or leavened food on Passover, so instead they eat matzah, which looks like a large cracker. Ground matzah, or matzah meal, is used to make such traditional foods as matzah balls (dumplings), gefilte fish and sponge cake. Cookies and cakes made out of nuts, like macaroons, are also eaten on Passover, along with other foods that follow the special kosher rules of Passover.

On each of the first two nights of Passover, it is customary to eat a holiday meal, the seder, at which we retell the story of the Exodus from Egypt. Seder participants each use a hagaddah, a book that tells the Passover story, to read and sing along. It is a seder tradition for a special matzah, the afikomen, to be hidden so it can be found and redeemed by one of the children in exchange for a gift.