Tonight starts the Jewish holiday of Passover, a holiday that celebrates Jewish freedom. Just like most other Jewish holidays (except Yom Kippur and a few other fast days), the week-long holiday is filled with food. But it’s not your typical kugels and challah that we’ll be eating all week. Passover comes with many food restrictions, including all leavened products containing wheat, barley, oats, rye, or spelt – collectively called chametz. The mainstay of Passover meals is matzo, a combination of flour and water that has been baked before it has a chance to rise.
Many people assume that since you can’t eat any chametz, Passover must be a healthy holiday. Not necessarily so. There are myriad baked goods, cholesterol-laden egg dishes, carb-rich kugels, and meat-filled meals to get in the way of maintaining a healthy weight and diet! For some reason, when it comes to Passover, people feel restricted from so many foods that they eat more of other foods they normally wouldn’t indulge in. For example, some people feel lost without their morning bowl of cereal. As a result, they eat a breakfast of Passover cakes and fruit. There’s nothing wrong with cake in moderation, but I don’t think it’s the way to start off your morning. Yes, I miss my cereal and my whole-grain waffles with peanut butter for breakfast, but there are plenty of healthy Passover-friendly options, including low-fat cottage cheese or yogurt and fruit or matzo with almond butter. And when it comes to other meals, there’s no reason you can’t stick to a healthy, balanced plate of food even without bread, rice, bulgur, or other grains. Check out my list of Passover-Friendly Recipes.
Tuesday: Second Seder at my parents’ house
Wednesday: Greek Frittata
Thursday: Vegetable Matzo Pizza and Mixed Salad
Friday: Dinner at friends
Saturday: Vegetable Matzo Lasagna
Sunday: Family Passover Dinner (again!)
Do you celebrate Passover? What are you eating this week?
Linking up at Org Junkie’s Menu Plan Monday.