Ma Nishtana: How different is this night?


Passover, like many Jewish holidays commemorates a historical event as well as a divine commandment. Its main focus is the Exodus – the Israelites departing Egypt, leaving behind slavery and moving towards nationhood. For years, our family has celebrated this holiday and observed it. We clean our home of any leavened bread and abstain from eating it. We hold a Seder dinner, a ritualized dinner, full of symbolic foods and acts, joined by friends and family. Every year, one of the great highlights of the evening is the singing of the four questions. This song asks: “How does this night differ from all other nights?” outlining that we eat and act differently to remind ourselves that we were once slaves in Egypt.

This year, however, this question has additional meaning. This Seder night will not only be different than all other regular nights but also different than all Seder nights. With our kids spread out pursuing their lives, their academic careers and traveling on a school trip overseas, we decided to embrace change. Change IS good. We will be spending the holiday in Naples, Florida with my mother in law and probably have a most unorthodox Passover. We will be attending a Seder meal at a synagogue on Marco Island, whose name I don’t even know and whose affiliation I am not familiar with. To all that I say: “Life, surprise me!”

And yet… Some things remain the same. Yes, I do have a nostalgic heart. Passover will not be complete with out chocolate Matza and Matza ball soup; ingredients for which will be included in packages for my kids. I will still make my Yemenite Haroset and ship it as well. I am enclosing some links and recipes for you to explore. Please share: What is your favorite Passover food and why?

Though this holiday is pretty labor intensive, I love how it brings the family together; love its unique foods, rituals and stories. May your Passover be full of joyful family moments! Chag Sameach!

!חג שמח


  1. Yemenite Haroset:
  2. Matzo Ball Soup:
  1. Quick and easy Chocolate Matzo Dessert

Serves 4


4 regular matzos, dampened with warm water and wrapped in kitchen towel

1/2 cup Nutella, (or other chocolate spread)

Add on:

1/2 cup Minced dried apricots

1/2-cup cranberries

1/2 cup toasted pecans

1/2-cup currants

1/2 cup toasted pine nuts

Powdered sugar

Chocolate drizzle.


Unwrap the matzos and make sure they are soft and pliable, but not wet. Spread 2-3 tablespoons chocolate spread on one whole matzo.


At this point, add any selection of toppings you like and fold the matzo in half, or roll it end to end and then slice into bite size pieces. Sprinkle powdered sugar, or drizzle with melted chocolate for garnish.

Consume immediately. Who can wait?