Rosh Hashanah: Celebrating the Jewish New Year

This September, Rosh Hashanah falls from sunset on the 18th until the evening of the 20th—two days of celebration of the creation, and of the Jewish new year. Two days of introspection of the past year and contemplation about what is to come. Traditionally, the Jewish holiday celebrates the creation of humanity on Earth, and is at the beginning of Tishrei, the seventh month of the Jewish calendar year.

Rosh Hashanah is when the symbolic Book of Life is opened, in which God records the names of the righteous, and Jewish people advocate for their names to be written within. The days are a reminder of being able to start fresh, start new.

Traditions abound during Rosh Hashanah, including throwing bread into a body of water to cast off sins during the Tashlich ceremony, and the blowing of the shofar (ram’s horn) as a wake-up call to get ready for introspection. There are prayers from the Mahzor read and melodies played and songs sung only during this time. Join the Chabad of Peachtree City/Southside for their Rosh Hashanah services Sept. 18–20 to learn and experience more (chabadsouthside.com). All are welcome!

There are many customary foods that are highly important during the Jewish new year. There are sweet foods like apples and honey to symbolize a sweet year to follow, and the braided challah bread is made into a round loaf to symbolize the full cycle of a new year. Some families hold a Rosh Hashanah seder where they eat a series of foods symbolizing a wish or blessing for prosperity.

We’ve included some recipes to try while celebrating the Jewish new year:

Traditional Rosh Hashanah Tzimmes

  • 1 large Spanish onion, cut in half or quarter rounds
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 1 lb. carrots, sliced in 1/2-inch rounds
  • 1/2 lb. sweet potato, cubed
  • 10 prunes, diced
  • 1-1/2 cups orange juice
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. salt

Saute the onion in the oil over medium heat for about 20 minutes. Add the rest of the ingredients and simmer for one hour, until vegetables are tender. Serve warm.

(recipe: chabad.org)

 

Challah Bread

  • 1 package instant yeast
  • 5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 3/4 cups water
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 large eggs

Combine flour, sugar, salt and yeast in a large bowl.

Add in oil, 2 eggs and water, and mix until well-combined.

On a well-floured surface, knead the dough for 10 minutes, or until it’s smooth.

Place dough in a oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap to let rise for one hour in a warm place.

When the dough has doubled in size, punch it down, then allow it to rise for another half hour.

Separate the dough into four equal parts and roll into strands, and braid the strands together into a round shape (just do your best).

Place the loaf onto a baking sheet lined with parchment and brush the top with the third egg beaten smooth.

Let the loaf rise for another 20-30 minutes while your oven preheats to 375°.

Bake for 35 to 40 minutes.

 

Classic Brisket

  • 2 tbsp. barbecue sauce
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 sliced sweet onion
  • 6 chopped carrots
  • 20 oz. Farbrengen, Manischewitz or other very sweet wine
  • 1 12 oz. bottle bottle chili sauce (we recommend Heinz brand, or something mild)
  • 5-7 lbs. brisket
  • garlic salt (optional)
  • 3 lbs potatoes, quartered
  • salt
  • onion salt (optional)

Sprinkle seasonings over meat and rub in lightly. Sear the meat in 500F degree oven for 10 minutes on each side. Combine liquids and vegetables, pour over meat, cover and cook at 350 degrees for 3 hours.

(recipe: myjewishlearning.com)

 

Apple Kugel

  • 1 lb. package of wide egg noodles
  • 1 stick of margarine
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 16 oz. container of cottage cheese
  • 1 16 oz. container of sour cream
  • 3 apples, peeled and sliced thin any variety
  • 3/4 cups sugar
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup apple juice or orange juice
  • 1 cup golden or dark raisins

Boil the noodles according to package instructions. Drain. Do not rinse. Put in a large bowl and add the butter. Mix and set aside. Let cool.In another bowl, add the eggs, cottage cheese, sour cream, vanilla, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, apple juice, raisins, and the apples. Combine all ingredients to make sure all the apples are well coated.

Preheat the oven to 350°. Grease a 9 x 13 inch deep baking dish. When noodles are cool, add the egg and apple mixture to combine. Pour everything into a baking dish. Bake for 45 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes and serve.

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