Festive Kitniyot Passover Seder Menu

A whole world of delights has opened up to Ashkenazi Jews who are now eating legumes and rice on Passover.

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Shirazi salad with poppy seed.
Shirazi salad with poppy seed.Credit: Vered Guttman
Vered Guttman
Vered Guttman

Why is this seder different from all other seders? 

The Rabbinical Assembly, the association of Conservative rabbis, recently approved kitniyot, Hebrew for legume, for use during Passover even for Ashkenazi Jews.

Ever since the 13th century, legumes have been eaten by Sephardi and Mizrahi Jews on Passover, while for Ashkenazi Jews they were strictly forbidden, making the Passover menu even harder to navigate. And although many Ashkenazim have since adopted to the Sephardi Passover diet, especially in Israel, it is now officially permitted - at least for those following Conservative Judaism - to enjoy rice, corn, chickpeas and tahini with your matza.

So don’t be afraid! A whole new world of Passover delights has just been opened to you. Take advantage of it!

The menu below includes everything you’ve always wanted for Passover, but never dared to try: tahini, chickpeas, beans, rice, polenta and more.

Start with the Persian version of matzo ball soup, where gondi, dumplings made of chickpea flour and ground chicken, rest in a golden chicken soup spiced with turmeric and saffron.

Persian chickpea dumplings (gundi).Credit: Vered Guttman

Beef Kebab with tahini sauce and tomato salsa can serve as the main course.

Beef kebab with tahini sauce and tomato salsaCredit: Embassy of Israel

Celebrate spring and the newly found permission to eat rice with this fresh green fava and herb rice dish.

Green fava and herb rice (for ochley kitniyot only!)Credit: Vered Guttman

Try adding a little poppy seeds in your salad, as they’re legitimate for Passover this year, with this Shirazi salad with poppy seed.

Polenta is OK now too! For dessert, try this fabulous, gluten free and parve polenta, orange and olive oil cake. It is even nicer served with fresh sliced oranges or a citrus sorbet.

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