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Personal Passover Traditions: Afikomen

Apr 9, 2009

by Sarah Feingold handmade and vintage goods

Last year I shared my grandmother’s version of my mother’s Matzah Ball Soup. This year, instead of sharing a food memory, I’ll share my favorite Passover custom: the hiding (and seeking) of the Afikomen.

In a nutshell, at the beginning of the Passover Seder, half of the middle of three pieces of Matzah (called the Afikomen, meaning “dessert” in Aramaic) is hidden, and Seder service can only conclude once a child locates the Afikomen. In my family, the reward for finding the Afikomen ranges from a silver dollar to some Passover chocolate. This fun custom aims to keep young people interested in the Passover traditions.

One year, as my uncle went to hide the Afikomen my brother secretly excused himself from the table to spy. When the time arrived to search for the prized unleavened bread, my brother calmly walked over to the couch and sat down. As us kids frantically rummaged through every drawer, under every rug, and behind every crevice, my brother remained seated. He finally stood up, dramatically reached under his couch cushion and retrieved the broken Matzah. We all demanded a re-do. I don’t remember who legitimately found the Afikomen, but I know it wasn’t me because I was laughing far too hard to participate in the search.

This year, my family’s Afikomen competition may be slimmer than usual. However, no matter the economy, these types of memories and traditions hold a family close even if you have to spend a holiday apart.

Please share your Passover traditions in the comments below.

View More Posts on Judaism | Holiday Posts 

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Passover Seder Plate Pattern


  • VintageEyeFashion

    VintageEyeFashion said 11 years ago

    Lovely pics! Thanks for sharing your Passover memories!

  • tinahdee

    tinahdee said 11 years ago

    So informative and nice to look at too!

  • Ryanplz

    Ryanplz said 11 years ago

    oh! i agree with tinahdee. very neat!

  • thymbyldesigns

    thymbyldesigns said 11 years ago

    חג פסח כשר ושמח! Did you realize, there are two shops who own a copy of the same Hagadah. :) It's actually a beautiful one....

  • JoyandWhimsy

    JoyandWhimsy said 11 years ago

    Thank you so much for explaining abuot the Afikomen 2 nice gift books for Jewish holidays: 1st edition Noah tale by Isaac Bashevis Singer: Hebrew stories art book:

  • ScottieinaCanoe

    ScottieinaCanoe said 11 years ago

    beautiful things!

  • sweetlifepaper

    sweetlifepaper said 11 years ago

    Funny Afikomen story! That used to be my favorite part of Passover! We hid the afikomen more than once!

  • RegalCottage

    RegalCottage said 11 years ago

    Chag Samaeach! Great explanation of Peseach. I love your afikomen story. ;)

  • UglyBaby

    UglyBaby said 11 years ago

    mmmmmmmmmmmm.....Matzah Ball Soup.

  • EJPcreations

    EJPcreations said 11 years ago

    I went to a very strict Catholic grade school, but we always celebrated Jewish holidays. We did this because Jesus was Jewish. Now I find that very progressive. I loved all the ritual behind the Passover Seder. Her story just reminded me of that very pleasant memory. Thank you Sarah.

  • FluteTeacher

    FluteTeacher said 11 years ago

    I love learning about Jewish traditions. Thanks for sharing.

  • dogties

    dogties said 11 years ago

    Great items Thanks for sharing.

  • Fancy0Frances

    Fancy0Frances said 11 years ago

    So interesting and beautiful. I hate it when one holiday monopolizes a time of year when more often than not there are several going on. Etsy rocks. Fancy0Frances.Etsy.Com

  • NaomiKimhi

    NaomiKimhi said 11 years ago

    Chag Samaeach:) I love the items remind me home.

  • maggielucia

    maggielucia said 11 years ago

    thanks for sharing that...i grew up with a Jewish stepfather ...but he did not teach his United Church of England stepdaughters any of his Passover traditions, a real shame!!

  • raisinlike

    raisinlike said 11 years ago

    Happy Passover everybody! פסח שמח לכולם

  • enchantingimages

    enchantingimages said 11 years ago

    yay passover! i shared this holiday with a friend for the first time, i love the hide and seek part!

  • rafya

    rafya said 11 years ago

    I love the Afickomen traditions too, Happy Passover! חג שמח וכשר

  • Nishale

    Nishale said 11 years ago

    Happy Passover everybody! BUT- I must say that the pictures you chose for this article do not reprisent the joy and happiness and the spring that comes with this marvelous important holiday!!!!!! and that makes me a bit sad because Passover is much much beautiful that it appears in here!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • sherrytruitt

    sherrytruitt said 11 years ago

    Happy Passover. You brought back a lot of Afikomen childhood memories! My grandfather always provided the winning dollar, and we fought hard to get it. I think the art you chose is wonderful.

  • odiliafu

    odiliafu said 11 years ago

    Thanks for sharing! It's so good to understand a different culture. Happy Passover!!

  • sandali

    sandali said 11 years ago

    Gak-sameag !! Happy Holidays to everyone -- whether it's Pesah or Easter -- may everyone be blessed with the best wishes ;)

  • sonofthecucumberking

    sonofthecucumberking said 11 years ago

    Great site to discover! Since you're so generous about sharing, I want to share a Passover experience with you I could do without repeating. It involves Pesach in Israel many years ago, hosting Robert Guillaume (famous there for TV's "Benson"), Albert Hague (Fame's Professor Shorofsky)and an unlikely troupe of additional performers. Finally got around to writing about it--"Once Upon a Passover" at Hag sameach.

  • SundraSandrusi

    SundraSandrusi said 11 years ago

    good afikomen story! Happy Passover to everyone!

  • scavengerhunt

    scavengerhunt said 11 years ago

    Love these picks.


    MRSBAUBLES said 11 years ago

    lovely story. my favorite part of the passover seder is watching all the kids running around looking for the Afikomin. Great picks too! Happy Passover!!

  • sage12888

    sage12888 said 11 years ago

    Great items!!!

  • novadesigns

    novadesigns said 11 years ago

    thank you for sharing! Great finds too.

  • SpringColors

    SpringColors said 11 years ago

    lovely passover gifts.

  • agru

    agru said 11 years ago

    Chag sameach!

  • madaboutmonty

    madaboutmonty said 11 years ago

    My boyfriend hid the afikomen in the vintage copy of The Great Gatsby I got him. When I asked for a hint, he quoted me one of his favorite lines from it. His room mate got it, I didn't. She found it. fml.

  • JodyBatson

    JodyBatson said 11 years ago

    My daughter, now grown always loved the matzah ball soup, I taught her to read and write Hebrew, now with grandkids I need to freshen up and teach them. Shalom, AH TRADITION! jody

  • EarthBabyDesigns

    EarthBabyDesigns said 11 years ago

    What a wonderful story. As a Unitarian I love learning about the traditions of the faiths mine draws upon. That needled felted seder plate totally rocks!

  • vadjutka

    vadjutka said 11 years ago

    I loved reading it! We have a kind of Seder Night Light with my friends, you can read more about it here: This year we ate too much and forgot about the Afikoman, so it is still there where we hid it: on the bookshelf :-) Maybe it will be good next year :-)

  • BoutiqueCandle

    BoutiqueCandle said 11 years ago

    Passover is the holiday filled with the most wonderful memories for me. Remembering past seders always brings to mind much joy and laughter. Thanks for sharing your story and a very happy Pesach!

  • lindab142

    lindab142 said 11 years ago

    It's a wonderul holiday with friends and family and fun. Thanks for featuring my card.

  • veroque

    veroque said 11 years ago

    Such a great story Sarah! Thank you for sharingand Happy Passover!! :)))

  • yifatiii

    yifatiii said 11 years ago

    Happy Passover! ♥

  • Yoola

    Yoola said 11 years ago

    פסח שמח :)

  • ooty

    ooty said 11 years ago

    Happy Passover =0)

  • AllAboutTheButtons

    AllAboutTheButtons said 11 years ago

    Wonderful story! This year we gave a $2 bill for the afikomin finder. He asked if he could trade for a silver dollar instead!

  • superfantastic50s

    superfantastic50s said 11 years ago

    Fabulous. I wish I would have read this pre-Passover, but there's always next year!

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