The festive holiday of Purim begins on Monday, March 6th and ends the evening of Tuesday, March 7th. This is a joyous holiday that is filled with yummy triangle cookies called hamantaschen, reading the Book of Esther from a Megillah (scroll), dressing up, and also some good deeds as well.
There are four mitzvot that are to be done on Purim. The first is to read the Megillah out loud (or to hear it) which can be heard in synagogues across the globe. The Megillah contains the Book of Esther which tells the heroic story of how Esther saved the Jewish people of Sushan (Persia). Many bring noise makers, known as groggers to drown out Haman’s name. The second Mitzvah is to give gifts to friends and family called Mishloach Manot. The third mitzvah is to give to those in need, some will donate funds to local organizations that help others. Others will give non-perishable foods to local organizations like the Ark who collect food for their pantries. The fourth mitzvah is to have a festive meal to celebrate the holiday. Even though we don’t celebrate Purim at camp, you can bring the spirit of camp by giving to others and cooking your own hamantaschen to give to friends and family.
Miss culinary arts at camp?
Try out this easy Hamantaschen recipe!
- 3 eggs beaten
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup oil (vegetable)
- Zest of 1 orange
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 3 1/2 cups flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 1-2 cans pie filling of your choice (poppy, raspberry, apricot and strawberry go well)
Prepare the dough in advance and chill if needed:
Mix the first 5 ingredients together with a fork until blended. Combine remaining ingredients together (flour and baking powder). Work it well with your hands.
Sprinkle a board with powdered sugar or flour.
The dough may be rolled and cut with a round cup into circles or with a round cookie cutter. It can be rolled into golf size balls and flattened into a circle with your palm and hand pressed. Place a small teaspoon of filling into the center and pinch or fold on three sides. Fold two sides so that it looks like an ice cream cone, then fold the third side over.
Bake at 350° for approximately 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown.