Israeli Holidays

In Israel, as in Jewish communities around the world, the Jewish holidays are a time for family and friends to gather and celebrate – how else?
With food, and lots of it.

But what makes celebrating the holidays in Israel unique, is that in Israel, holidays are national, public holidays.

Signs of the holidays abound in stores, on billboards, on tv, radio, and in strangers wishing each other “chag sameach” (happy holiday) on the streets. Even the most secular Israeli will acknowledge the holidays on some level.

Here you can learn more about Israeli holidays, and then explore the related Jewish holiday recipes.

Shabbat--Rosh Hashanah--Yom Kippur--Simhat Torah--Sukkot--Hanukkah
Tu Bishvat--Purim--Passover--Yom Haatzmaut--Lag B'omer--Shavuot

The weekly day of rest, the Jewish Sabbath is celebrated from sundown Friday through Saturday evening.

Rosh Hashanah
The Jewish New Year, also known as the Day of Judgment. Marks the beginning of the Days of Awe.

Yom Kippur
The Jewish Day of Atonement and a fast day, marks the end of the Days of Awe.

Simhat Torah
Celebrates the ending of one cycle of reading the entire Torah in synagogue, and the beginning of a new cycle.

Recalls when the People of Israel lived in fragile huts in the desert after the exodus from ancient Egypt. It is also one of the pilgrimage holidays to the Temple in Jerusalem.

The Jewish Festival of Lights, Hanukkah celebrates the victory of the Maccabean army over the Greeks in 165 BCE and the rededication of the Temple in Jerusalem. Hanukkah Recipes

Tu Bishvat
The New Year of the Trees, symbolized by eating foods from the Land of Israel. Tu Bishvat Recipes

A boisterous and festive holiday celebrating when Queen Esther saved the Jews of Persia from destruction in 473 BCE. Purim Recipes

Commemorates the exodus of the People of Israel from ancient Egypt, highlighted by the Passover Seder meal.

Yom Haatzmaut
Celebrates the establishment of the State of Israel on May 14, 1948.

Lag B’omer
A holiday marking Jewish unity and pride that is celebrated with parades, outings and bonfires at night.

Also known as the Harvest Festival and the First Fruits Festival, Shavuot celebrates the giving of the Torah to the People of Israel at Mt. Sinai. Shavuot Recipes

Go to Holiday Recipes
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