Are there any special preparations religious Jews need for Passover beyond buying Wine & Matzoth for the Seder?

Yes, a lot.  Actually writing here is my way of stalling in getting all the work done.

The major mitzvah of Passover is two fold 1. you must eat almost 2 pieces of matzah on the seder night (though you don’t have to have wine – you can have grape juice instead.)

And the second is what takes most households a minimum of a month to get ready for Pesach (the Hebrew word for Passover) and is considered a very serious mitzvah. A Jew is not allowed to own, eat, or get pleasure (read make money) from chometz.

What is chametz? Anything made from wheat, spelt, oats, barley or rye in any form that is not baked in 18 minutes or less from the moment the dry flour or bean is mixed with water.

So that means no whisky, beer, noodles, barley soup and etc.  And the prohibition means any little piece of chametz as small as a size of an olive. So religious Jews clean and go through every part of their house, cars, yards, businesses to get rid of chametz. Now you know that spring cleaning was invented by the Jews.

There is a possibility to sell chometz to a non-Jew with the understanding as long as the non-Jew is okay with it to buy it back after Pesach – though it should be understood it is a real sale.

When the house is all cleaned the kitchen is ‘turned over’.  Which means every counter, shelf that was used for dishes or real chometz is covered.  Special dishes, pots and even toaster ovens are used for Pesach.  It is an exciting though exhausting day when the kitchen is turned over.  Pesach is almost here.

Once the holiday begins, the seder is begun with all its beautiful traditions.  Any chometz found during the holiday is immediately destroyed.

P.S. Picture is a joke.   But the kitchen can look a bit like it.

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