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Celebrate Tu B'Shevat with a Fruit and Nut Seder

Monday, January 21, 2013
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Celebrate Tu B'Shevat with a Fruit and Nut Seder. Photo by Stephanie Singer

We've listed a bunch of really fun events celebrating Tu B'Shevat on our holiday calendar page, even one at the new Creekside COOP in Elkins Park. It's also fun to host your own seder and it can be fairly easy. All you need are dried fruits, nuts and wine.  

Let's start with the meaning behind this holiday. Tu B'Shevat, which means the 15th day (Tu) of the Jewish month Shevat, is a celebration of the trees. This year, Tu B'Shevat begins on the evening Friday, Jan. 25, and ends on the 26th. There is a Kabbalistic tradition to eat 10 different fruits and, like Passover, drink four cups of wine. In my tradition, I follow Hillel's seder, which they offer online in an easily downloadable form. 

The progression of the seder is based on the seasons and begins with winter. The first cup pairs with fruits that have an inedible shell — pomegranates, almonds, walnuts, bananas, peanuts, etc. Spring's fruits have an inedible inner pit —olives, dates, cherries, plums, apricots, etc. Eat the whole fruits of summer — grapes, figs, apples, pears, quinces, etc. And fall ... well, no fruits for fall. Just wine.

Regardless of your seder preference, Tu B'Shevat represents a time to reflect on our social responsibility to the environment. As I'm writing this, it is about 26 degrees outside and snowing. It may feel strange to think about the fruits that the Earth provides when it is so barren outside, but "To Everything (Turn, Turn, Turn) There is a season (Turn, Turn, Turn)..."

Chag Sameach,

Stephanie
The Bubbi Project

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