Why Is This Night Different From All Other Nights?

This singular question in four parts has been asked by the youngest child present at the Passover Seder since the Passover observations began. The child is speaking for all children, seeking to know the history of the Jewish people and the importance of Passover. The adults take turns answering the questions, bringing the history of the Exodus and God’s saving grace to life.

Why is this night different from all other nights? On all other nights, either bread or matzoth is eaten. Why, on this night, is there only matzoth to eat? On all other nights many kinds of vegetables and herbs are eaten, but on this night there are only bitter herbs to eat. On all other nights foods are not dipped in salt water, but on this night foods are dipped not once but twice. On all other nights there are meats which has been roasted, stewed or boiled, but on this night there is only roasted meat.

Matzoth is eaten because the people of Israel could not wait for their breads to rise, they had to be ready and so no leaven was not permitted. Bitter herbs is a remind of the bitterness of slavery. The green vegetables in salt water symbolize their tears. The Charoset (a mixture of apples and nuts) symbolize the sweetening of freedom. Only roasted meat is eaten because it is how the Sacrificial Lamb was prepared at the Temple. And only the Sacrificial Lamb was permitted on this night.

In addition to the four questions, four cups of wine are also poured during the Passover. Each cup has a different meaning.

The Cup of Sanctification: “I will bring you out from under the burden of the Egyptians.”
The Cup of Judgment: “I will deliver you from their bondage.”
The Cup of Redemption: “I will redeem you with an outstretch arm and with great judgments.”
The Cup of Praise: “I will take you for My people, and I will be your God.”

Jesus and His disciples had already partaken of the first two cups, and had broken the Bread during the Passover meal. It was with the third cup, the Cup of Redemption, that Jesus took when the supper had ended. Again, He gave thanks and praise, gave the cup to His disciples, and said: Take this, all of you, and drink from it; this is the cup of my blood, the blood of the new and everlasting covenant. It will be shed for you and for all so that sins may be forgiven. Do this in memory of me.

There is much debate among scholars and theologians as to whether or not Jesus shared all four cups of wine with the twelve as they reclined at table in the upper room. Since the third cup is clearly mentioned, and Jesus left after this to pray in the garden, there is no mention of the four and final cup, the Cup of Praise. Some site Christ saying He would not drink again until they were all in Heaven, so there could be no fourth cup. Others say when Christ was on the cross and uttered “It is finished” as He died, that he was referring to the conclusion of Passover, and that His blood shed on the cross was the Cup of Praise uniting God with His people.

One thing is clear to believers of all denomination, God loves us. Christ died so that we might be forgiven. We are His People. Amen.

Holy Thursday Roasted Supper
Simple Rosemary Roasted Chicken with Fig Garnish
Skillet-Roasted Rosemary Potatoes
Rosemary Butter Glazed Carrots
Pita Bread for Serving
Red Wine as desired

Simple Rosemary Roasted Chicken with Figs
1 (3 lb) Young Chicken
Kosher Salt to taste
Fresh Black Pepper to taste
2 teaspoons fresh Rosemary Needles
1/2 teaspoon Smoked Paprika
1/2 teaspoon Mesquite Seasoning
1 tablespoon Olive Oil
1/4 cup Butter
1/2 cup Chicken Stock
1-1/2 teaspoon fresh Thyme
Fresh Rosemary Sprigs for garnish, optional
1 or 2 Figs for garnish, optional
1 Orange for garnish, optional

Heat oven to 450 degrees. Line a roasting pan with foil, place a roasting rack inside the pan and set aside.

If necessary, remove giblets from the chicken cavity. Thoroughly dry the chicken with paper towels both inside and out. The chicken should be as dry as possible.

Season cavity, and under the wings with salt and pepper. Set chicken aside.

Strip rosemary needles from sprigs, mince. Sprinkle rosemary under the skin along the breast, legs and thighs. Brush the skin with olive oil. Sprinkle with paprika and mesquite seasoning.

Truss the bird for even cooking, bringing the legs together and up toward the breast. Bind wings as well up toward the breast. Sprinkle exposed skin with salt and pepper. Place the chicken, breast side up, in the middle of the roasting rack. Place in the heated oven. Do not baste the bird or open the door for 60 minutes.

Once an hour has past, test the internal temperature in the thickest part of the thigh without touching the bone. The chicken should be at least 165-degrees. Remove from oven, transfer bird to a cutting board to rest for 15 minutes.

While the chicken is resting, remove and discard any fat from the roasting pan while retaining the chicken drippings. Add butter and chicken stock to the drippings. Strip thyme from the sprigs, add to the drippings in the pan. Place in the warm oven to mingle. Once the butter has melted, remove pan from the oven. Tilt, whisking butter, stock, drippings and herbs to create a dipping sauce.

Snip rosemary sprigs to use as a garnish. Slice figs for garnish, set aside. Cut orange into rounds, set aside.

Carve bird into desired into serving pieces. Arrange chicken on a serving platter. Garnish platter with rosemary sprigs, sliced figs and orange rounds. Drizzle with butter-pan drippings and enjoy.

Skillet-Roasted Rosemary Potatoes
Olive Oil as needed
4 Rosemary Sprigs
3/4 teaspoon Kosher Salt
12 small (2-inch round) Red Potatoes

Heat oven to 425-degrees. Pour enough oil into a large cast iron skillet to cover bottom. Tilt pan to distribute the oil evenly. Set aside.

Strip rosemary needles from the sprigs. Scatter rosemary over the bottom of the pan. Season rosemary with salt, set aside.

Scrub potatoes, cut i half. Arrange potatoes, cut side down, over the rosemary in the skillet.

Place skillet in the heated oven on the lowest rack. Roast potatoes until bottoms are crisp and well-browned, about 30 minutes.

Rosemary Butter Glazed Carrots
1 lb Baby Carrots
1/4 cup Butter, divided
2 teaspoons Sugar
1/4 cup Water or as needed
1 tablespoon Bourbon Whiskey
2 tablespoons Rosemary Needles
Rosemary Sprigs for garnish

Place carrots in a saucepan. Add 2 tablespoons butter, the sugar and water just enough to cook carrots without covering completely.

Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, uncovered. Cook, shaking the pan occasionally, until the liquid had reduced to a thin syrup, about 20 minutes.

While the carrots cook, strip Rosemary needles from the sprigs. Chop and set aside.

Add whiskey, remaining 2 tablespoons butter and the minced rosemary. Lower the heat to medium low, add the rosemary, toss to combine. Let simmer for another 8 minutes for the flavors to marry.

Place carrots in a serving bowl. Garnish with fresh rosemary sprigs, serve and enjoy.

Our blessing cup is a communion with the Blood of Christ

Author: Rosemarie's Kitchen

I'm a wife, mother, grandmother and avid home cook.I believe in eating healthy whenever possible, while still managing to indulge in life's pleasures.

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