Passover Celebration in the Poconos
This weekend while many restaurants are serving Easter meals, an entire resort in the Poconos has been rented out to celebrate Passover.
The Inn at Pocono Manor near Mount Pocono is sold out this weekend, next week and next weekend as 700 guests celebrate Passover, the Jewish holiday and festival which begins at sundown Friday night.
“Passover falls out over an eight-day period and the first two nights of Passover are the most important parts. They are the Seder,” said Michael Mandel of Pesach Time Tours.
The Seder is the meal which lasts up to six hours and includes religious teachings.
The guests from New York and New Jersey rented out the entire resort.
“The only way we can do is take the entire facility and the whole facility is 100 percent a Passover kitchen,” said Mandel.
The food is a huge part of the Passover celebration.
Nothing is made with flour and all the food must be Kosher.
“There’s a set of rules the Jewish people have about being Kosher and the most basic is keeping meat and dairy separate,” said Mandel.
The rules of the kitchen are very strict and specific. The meat dishes and the dairy dishes are prepared on totally different ends of the kitchen. A rabbi is also in the kitchen to make sure everything goes as planned, to make sure all the meals are Kosher. A few chefs are also hired to make those Kosher meals.
“It’s very well orchestrated. Their chefs come in, they have a plan in motion. They assign tasks to my crew, they tell us the what and I deal with the how,” said executive chef Ryan Stracko.
The food preparation is so strict that the tour brings in $250,000 worth of Kosher food, which is prepared on site using Kosher-specific kitchen appliances, dishes, pots and pans.
While the guidelines are strict, the general manager of the Inn at Pocono Manor is more than happy to accommodate the guests.
“It’s great to have this type of business here because they fill us up for two weeks and all of our staff is working,” said Lisa Green.
Passover ends next Sunday and then the Inn at Pocono Manor will have rooms available.