I am blogging today because I am really excited about making our first ever Tu B'Shevat dessert seder this Shabbat. It kind of came out of nowhere, I didn't even realize Tu B'Shevat was *on* Shabbat until yesterday and I have been obsessed ever since. Having taught Hebrew school for 15 years or so, I have had my share of Tu B'Shevat seders and being a mom for almost 9 years, I know that no one in my family would enjoy feasting on figs, dates and carob chips (the best part of it all!). So, rather than force (more) weird food and fruit into my kids' mouths, I decided to do an all dessert seder - something I know my kids will love.
I am going to have hagaddot printed out and have a reading part for everyone. I like the PJ Library one and will try to find some more to add for Leo and Amelia to read.
If you Google "Tu B'Shevat" or "Tu B'Shevat Seder", you will get a ton of links. Here are the links I am using for my seder.
For each part of the seder, there is a cup of grape juice, representing each season, and a group of fruit/food you eat. Here are the basics:
Cup 1 - all white grape juice - Winter
Fruits that have an outer layer/peel that we can't eat. Learning from this to not judge from the outside, but to look within.
Examples, Pistachios, pomegranates, almonds, walnuts, bananas, peanuts, etc.
My desserts: Chocolate covered banana bites and pistachio mini muffins
Cup 2 - white grape juice with a few drops of red grape juice - Spring
Fruits that have a pit or seeds that we cannot eat. Teaching us about the untapped potential we all have inside of us.
Examples include olives, dates, cherries, plums, apricots, etc.
My desserts: Individual plum and apricot crisps
Cup 3 - half red/half white grape juice - Summer
Fruits that we can eat both inside and out. We are reminded of the wholeness of the world, where nothing is wasted.
Examples: Grapes, raisins, blueberries, raspberries, apples, pears, lemons, limes.
My desserts: Mini lemon bars and berries on the side.
Cup 4 - red grape juice with a few drops of white - Fall
Things that have strong scents, recognizing what may be invisible to the naked eye.
Examples include rosemary, cinnamon, bay leaf, cedar
My desserts: Molasses spice crackle cookies, rosemary scented nuts
I also bought some mini fruit slice candies to have on the table - I always forget who likes them and who doesn't, but they are cute and festive anyway.
I am going to try to take pictures of the finished the products - so excited!!