Why lighten up on Chanukah

Every year at Chanukah when I explain my reasoning as to why Chanukah should be a low-fat festival, everyone always comments that my thinking makes sense. The miracle of Chanukah is that one day’s supply  of oil (back in 165 B.C.) lasted 8 days.  Each night of the 8-day festival an additional candle is lit to commemorate the historical events.

But when other Jewish holidays are observed, they are done in the same manner as was done historically. For example, at Passover, observant Jews do not eat leavened bread when celebrating the liberation of the Israelites from Egypt thousands of years ago. They did not wait for their bread to rise and consequently when fleeing Egypt, they ate unleavened bread.
That’s why Chanukah should be about less oil rather than the copious amounts used in traditional Chanukah fare such as fried latkes and sufganiyot (doughnuts).

Even so, if you choose to celebrate the holiday with plenty of oil, at this point you may be ready for my baked latkes. They are delicious and don’t taste as though they’ve been lightened up.  They’re perfect for a celebration.


Tags: , ,

Categories: Holidays, Uncategorized

Author:Rosie Schwartz

Rosie Schwartz is a Toronto-based consulting dietitian and writer.

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