It is almost Rosh Hashanah, and the harvest is ready. Tzipporah and her family pick rutabagas, yams, turnips, potatoes, and carrots. Then, she and her friends choose the most beautiful of the vegetables and scrub them for the Rosh Hashanah meal. Tzipporah is unsure whether these raw vegetables will make an enticing meal for the holiday, but she drizzles butter on them and adds brown sugar, honey, cinnamon, and fruit. A delicious tzimmes is the result. After the synagogue service and the blowing of the shofar, the family gathers for their feast, and the tzimmes is beautiful and sweet — just like Rosh Hashanah itself.
A tzimmes recipe is appended, along with an author’s note that gives more information about Rosh Hashanah and makes a special point of encouraging children to help prepare the family meal. The beautiful illustrations depict a farm that is bursting with autumn color and complete with a multicultural group of smiling family and friends. This is a lovely book to read aloud at the start of a fresh new year.
Michal Hoschander Malen is the editor of Jewish Book Council’s young adult and children’s book reviews. A former librarian, she has lectured on topics relating to literacy, run book clubs, and loves to read aloud to her grandchildren.