(Not my mimouna table... picture from http://www.onejerusalem.com/)
Last night, my husband and I went out on a bread-finding mission... it's now no longer Pesach in Israel! (And, honestly, I barely felt the trial of Pesach-eating here. We'd barely finished seder leftovers and it's already no longer Passover! Maybe it's psychological: knowing that at any point during the holiday we could actually go out to eat in kosher-for-Passover restaurants made it much easier to feel unburdened at home. I LOVE having one Seder and only seven days of the holiday!)
At any rate, we ended up at our favorite local pizza shop, which is actually owned by Moroccans (you can order jachnun with your pizza if you'd like!). They had Mizrachi music blaring, and in front of hanging carpets, three generations of women in the owner's family stood selling cookie trays and frying mufleta, which are essentially a cross between a crepe and malawach. Mufleta are made of thin, flexible, buttery dough, and they're traditional on the north African Jewish holiday of Mimouna-- today! You eat mufleta covered in honey and butter, and they're delicious.
I'd never heard of Mimouna before, but you can read an excellent summary of Mimouna traditions here. It's a holiday celebrated the day after Pesach ends, and the name "Mimouna" is either (Depending on your interpretation) is based on the great rabbi Maimonedes or on the word "emuna," meaning "faith," or on the Arabic word for "luck." The essential idea seems to be that right after Passover we celebrate our deliverance from Egypt and G-d is specially open to our prayers-- particularly prayers for matchmaking. The woman making mufleta wished I might find a good man, and when I told her that I already had, she wished he might become better. :) I asked her if non-Moroccans can celebrate Mimouna, and she said that here in Israel, everyone can do what makes them joyful. (Still, I doubt I'll be serving platters of "live fish" the day after Passover from now on-- could the website about Mimouna really mean that one?)
So, happy Mimouna! Tarbechu vetisadu-- may you be prosperous and lucky.
My husband and I (and our cat Zeus) made aliyah to northern Israel in April, 2008. In Israel, we adopted two street kittens who have proceeded to make up for kittenhoods of deprivation by growing remarkably fat and shiny. In October of 2011, we welcomed our first daughter, Nitsah. Moving to a new country demands both a sense of wonder and a sense of humor. In this blog, I'll try to share both! DISCLAIMER: I actually can't tell you how to be Israeli, because I'm still working on it myself. But at least we can muddle towards Israeli-ness together!