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Festive Time

December 20, 2014

Chanukkah, a Jewish festival of rededication, also known as the festival of lights, is an eight day festival beginning on the 25th day of the Jewish month of Kislev.

Recently I was invited to join in the Chanukah festivities by Mr Michael Morris (President of Parramatta & District Synagogue) on the 18th of December 2014 at Westfield North Rocks Shopping Town, NSW, Australia. It was a wonderful showcasing of the culture via Chanukah songs, candle lighting & fun activities for children.

Mr Morris shared, “We had around 60 participate last night and many shoppers stop and ask questions or pass on stories about their involvement with Judaism. Very successful event”.

And there is the Chanukah party, Chedar presentation evening, Mincha service & Candle lighting at sunset on the 21st of December 2014 with freshly cooked latkes and scrumptious doughnuts. For further information contact Mr Morris via email: parrasynagogue@gmail.com

Here is a song: https://youtu.be/KxH0xF84h_0

Chanukkah, Oh Chanukkah

Come light the menorah

Let’s have a party

We’ll all dance the hora

Gather round the table, we’ll have a treat

Shiny tops to play with, latkes to eat

And while we are playing

The candles are burning low

One for each night, they shed a sweet light

To remind us of days long ago.

Candle Lighting

The candles are arranged and lit in a candelabrum called a menorah or chanukkiah that holds nine candles: one for each night, plus a shammus at a different height, along with the recitation of prayers and blessings.

Recipe for Latkes (12 palm-sized)


  • 4 medium potatoes
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 eggs or 2 teaspoons of No eggs powder
  • 1/2 cupmatzah meal (flour or bread crumbs can be substituted)
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. each salt and black pepper (more or less to taste)
  • vegetable oil


  • Shred the potatoes and onion into a large bowl. Squeeze out all excess liquid.
  • Add eggs/No eggs powder and mix well.
  • Add matzah meal gradually until the batter is doughy, not too dry.
  • Add the baking powder, salt and pepper and salt.
  • Heat about 1/2 inch of oil to medium-high heat.
  • Form the batter into thin patties about the size of the palm.
  • On medium heat fry 2 patties at a time in oil till golden brown.
  • Place finished latkes on paper towels to drain.
  • Enjoy hot with sour cream or applesauce.

Dreidel-the game to play

Create a deridel by using the template available on the link below:


The Hebrew word for dreidelsevivon, which, as in Yiddish means “to turn around.” Dreidels have four Hebrew letters.

1. Any number of people can take part in this great game.

2. Each player begins the game with an equal number of game pieces (about 10-15) such as pennies, nuts, chocolate chips, raisins, matchsticks, etc.

3. At the beginning of each round, every participant puts one game piece into the center “pot.” In addition, every time the pot is empty or has only one game piece left, every player should put one in the pot.

4. Every time it’s your turn, spin the dreidel once. Depending on the outcome, you give or get game pieces from the pot:

a) Nun means “nisht” or “nothing” [in Yiddish]. The player does nothing.

b) Gimmel  means “gantz” or “everything” [in Yiddish].  The player gets everything in the pot.

c) Hey means “halb” or “half” [in Yiddish]. The player gets half of the pot. (If there is an odd number of pieces in the pot, the player takes half of the total plus one).

d) Shin (outside of Israel) means “shtel” or “put in” [in Yiddish]. Peh (in Israel) means “pay.” The player adds a game piece to the pot.

5. If you find that you have no game pieces left, you are either “out” or may ask a fellow player for a “loan.”

6. When one person has won everything, that round of the game is over!

Guneeta Kaur


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