SHAVUOT - a holiday celebration in Israel

Shavuot is a one-day holiday with many names, dozens of traditions and recipes galore. Agricultural festivals, sales in shops and supermarkets, children dancing and performing and much much more. Read on to see what it is all about ....

Shavuot folk dancing Tamar Regional Council
Shavuot commemorates the day when the Israelites received the Torah during their desert wanderings approximately 3,327 years ago, and is the only Jewish holiday mentioned in the Torah without a specific calendar date. It is celebrated 50 days after the end of Passover and is a gala of colour, cuisine (dairy), nature and music.  This holiday is also known throughout the world as Pentecost.   

The communities all over the Tamar region gather in various ways to observe this 'harvest festival'.  This atmosphere of merriment and gaiety, the delicious aromas of dairy food, the music that invities, all ages to get up and dance traditional folk dances,  even the most opposed.  The harvesting of the crops is over, the first fruits of the season are washed and appetizingly displayed on the table with salads, cheeses, pastry dishes and, of course, wine.  

The ceremony revels in lighthearted fun, children giving blessings and thanks to nature, short skits performed by the younger generation and the highlight; a presentation of all the new babies born over the past 12 months.  Water fights with water guns and balloon waterbombs take place on the lawns across the county, families pitching their tents and staying awake all night together watching films on the outdoor screen, danicing, music, good food and social gatherings are all the heart and soul of this beautiful festivity.  

This year, we are celebrating at the beginning of post COVID-19 and so the festivities will be very different.  But nonetheless, families will gather, the festal fare will dress the family dining table, the music will waft thoughtout the homes and out through the windows for the enjoyment of all, and the atmosphere will become almost two fold - a celebration of tradition and historical significance on one hand and on the other hand, of having overcome the threat to our existence.  

Why don't you try this recipe - a delicious cheese cake that the whole family will enjoy.

CHEESECAKE (no bake)

Kindly donated by Miriam Buta, member of Kibbutz Ein Gedi.

Prepare a baking tin with a biscuit base (soaked in a little milk)


750 grm. white cheese
1 packet butter of soft margarine
1 packet of vanilla sugar
2 eggs
1 cup sugar
Grated lemon peel from half a lemon.



Beat two egg whites until they form peaks.  In a mixer, beat the butter/margarine, sugar, vanilla sugar, yolks and lemon peel until it  has a creamy consistency.

Add slowly, the white cheese until the consistency is smooth and light. Very carefully, fold in the whipped egg whites and then pour onto the biscuit base.  Place in the fridge for at least 4 hours.




Kindly donated by Ziva Gilad, member of Kibbutz Ein Gedi.


Heat the oven on a temperature of 200 degrees.

5 large eggs or 6 small eggs
3/4 cup of sugar
3 x tubs of white cheese (9%)
1 sour cream
1 dsp of cornflour per egg
One lemon (grated)



Mix the cheese, sour cream, egg yolks, sugar and lemon in a bowl.  Whip the egg whites in a separate bowl (add a pinch of salt), until it stands in peaks.

Slowly fold in the mixture into the whipped egg whites until the mixture is smooth and creamy.  GREASE THE BAKING TIN EXTREMELY WELL.  Place the cake in the over at 200 degress for 10 minutes and then reduce the heat to 180 degrees for a further 50 minutes to an hour (keep at eye on it at all times).  Leave the cake to cool in the over for at least and hour.




Happy Shavuot




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