It’s that time of year again; Pesach is only a couple weeks away. It’s definitely a daunting holiday, with lots of preparation that needs to be done. I’m a planner; I keep lists, and even plan when I am going to planJ. It helps me keep calm knowing that I have an agenda and can check things off as they get done. In this article, I’m going to share my Pesach lists that I keep from one year to another and how I basically start planning for next Pesach even before the seder plate gets packed away.
I have a few running lists- menus, inventory and shopping. I keep them all in my Pesach cookbooks on a separate area of my bookshelves. Why in the cookbooks you ask? Well, aside from the fact that I am computer illiterate and cannot use excel to save my life, if I packed my lists away with my Pesach stuff, I would forget about them. So, by keeping them accessible throughout the year, I can pull them out right around Purim time to review what I need for the upcoming year. Additionally, when I see the items I need on sale during the year, I know to buy them and cross them off the list.
List #1 Inventory
I write this list immediately after havdala on motzai Pesach. On top of the paper I write the next year (during 2017, I wrote 2018) on one side of the paper I write “have” and on the other I write “need”. If I have closed unused items that will not expire before next Pesach, I write them down on the “have” side. And on the “need” side, I write which items I will need for the next year (obvs). On this list, I also make notes. For instance, how many people and meals were served and how much of various ingredients were used, why buy 9 heads of Romaine lettuce when you only need 2.
List #2 Shopping
By keeping a year to year grocery shopping list, it takes the guess work out of it. I go even further and break it down by store. I buy the paper goods and household items (aluminum tins, containers, foil, candles and plastic tablecloths) well before Purim and stash them in the garage. I prefer to buy my meat and produce from one store and my pantry items from another, so my lists reflect that.
List #3 Menus
I have been making Pesach now for 7 years and have learned what works (for us) and what doesn’t. Of course we tweak meals from year to year, but we usually come back to the same family favorites. I keep my menus from year to year, again, just to make things easier. On the menus, I keep notes of which recipes worked and which didn’t. I’ve been making the same brownies and almond cookies for years; it just depends on how many batches I need to make (depending on how many people are home). As much as I love to try and taste new things, on Pesach, I try not to patchke and keep things simple.
I hope this post gives you some helpful list keeping tips. Leave a comment to let me know how you organize your Pesach.