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Study and Theory/

Grandma Lederer (Kochavi), Discussed by: Michal Ganz, Yankele, Dina Gold

The Red Sea of Borscht


In her childhood my grandmother Lederer lived in a small and closed village in Transylvania (Shimshon and Sarah visited the village about a year ago – of the 70 Jewish families who lived there nothing remains, and with great difficulty they found the place on whch their home had stood).

The residents of this village liked, may the Lord preserve us, to get drunk, and so it was that my grandmother’s father, who was a respected man in the village, once brought in honour of Passover a very large barrel of superior Italian wine.

The rumour passed by word of mouth throughout the village, and everyone hurried to gather  in the home of the owner of the barrel in order to have a taste of nothing: because it should be known: in order to honour the four glasses of wine nothing should be tasted before the Seder apart from a taste of nothing.

The people tasted a small sip, and saw that it was good, and they tasked another small sip. 

And they saw that it was good, and they tasted again and again until they couldn’t differentiate between Passover and Purim. 

And as each and every generation each individual must feel as if he himself had left Egypt.

What did they do? They took Borsht which was ready for the Seder night, and spilt in on the floor of the room....and they would pass over “the sea” to dry land.

This was the way they celebrated in that same year Passover in the village.

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