Thursday, April 18, 2024

Middle Child Memories: My Kosher for Passover Birthdays

          Not every year, but far too many for my liking, my birthday has fallen on Passover. I’m bringing this up now because, well, it’s almost Passover, and this is one of those years. As an adult, this doesn’t matter much to me anymore. But as a child -- especially as a Middle Child – this was a very big deal. And not the good kind of very big deal.
          Before this goes any further, I need to provide some context. If you’ve been following this blog, it should be abundantly clear by now that I have serious Middle Child issues. If the fact that I felt it necessary to create a blog to document the trials and tribulations of my unfortunate birth order position wasn’t enough to convince you, then perhaps knowing I also founded the International Middle Child Union to help raise awareness of our plight should seal the deal. Also, for the purposes of this post, it’s important to know that I grew up in a Kosher household, which means every Passover we dined on special Kosher for Passover plates and only ate Kosher for Passover foods for all eight days of the holiday. Regrettably, it also meant that on the years when my birthday and Passover collided, I had to have a
Kosher for Passover birthday cake.
          Now, here’s something you need to know about Kosher for Passover birthday cakes: they are not very good. Even the “good” ones are not very good. A “good” Kosher for Passover birthday cake just means it’s not awful. This is not just some distorted Middle Child memory of mine. I am not alone in this belief. One review of Kosher for Passover desserts observed “It can be hard to bake desserts that are unleavened and still taste good,” and “many Passover foods taste stale even when they are fresh.” Another critique noted that Kosher for Passover desserts “often taste like they’d been abandoned in the dessert for 40 days and nights.” Still another declared “Passover desserts are not known for being delicacies. How could they be? What kind of baked goods are made without flour?” It further suggested that “Passover is a
good time to try to skip desserts.” The particular dessert being reviewed was described as “seven layers of yellow cake made from potato starch so, yes, these layers are quite dry.” And this was written about a cake the reviewer actually liked! So you see what I had to deal with?
          To be clear, I don’t believe any child, Middle or otherwise, should be subject to such indignity on their birthday. But if I'm being totally honest, it somehow feels even worse when you're a Middle Child. Just one more example of how once again my siblings somehow got the better end of the deal, and I got screwed. My brother and sister got to celebrate their birthdays with marvelously moist feasts of frosting, but no such birthday cake love for me. No fair! I had to just smile and suck it up as I choked down each arid bite of some nut laden concoction I would’ve been more than happy to just, yeah… pass over. 
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