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Since we know that the Torah instructs us in every aspect of our lives, are there any instructions about what to eat at the Purim meal?


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closed as off-topic by msh210 Mar 19 at 3:19

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  • "Purim Torah questions are on-topic only once a year, and will be closed after Purim. For details, see: Purim Torah policy" – msh210
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Cholent!!!![15] –  Seth J Mar 3 at 4:53
    
Vayikra 26:7-10 is clearly referencing Purim, which is just under a month before the Korban HaOmer. –  Double AA Mar 12 at 17:25

3 Answers 3

Of course there are! In the מדרש הנעלם here the Rabbis tell us that the Purim seudah should consist of five food items:

1) Challah - Naturally the first food item is bread, since every festive meal must have bread. But on Shabbos and Festivals it is not called bread, but Challah. The reason for the difference is because the mispar katan mispari gematria* (MKMG) of the word for bread (לחם) is 6, a number which relates to six non-holy days of the week. But the MKMG of חלה is 7, which relates generally to the holiness of Shabbos.

*A method of gematria where the total numerical value of a word is reduced to one digit by adding up the gematria values of the letters. Should the sum of these numbers exceed 9, the integer values of the total are repeatedly added to each other to produce a single-digit figure.

   But the number 7 also specifically relates to the special day of Purim, because even though it is called פורים in the plural, we see from the verse in Esther 9:26 עַל-כֵּן קָרְאוּ לַיָּמִים הָאֵלֶּה פוּרִים עַל-שֵׁם הַפּוּר that this refers to the two days of Purim and Shushan Purim, but each individual day is called פור, and the MKMG of פור is 7.

2) Wine - An essential part of every festive meal, but even more so on Purim, because the days of Purim are called days of מִשְׁתֶּה וְשִׂמְחָה (Esther 9:17), and the word משתה relates the word שתיה (drinking), and so Purim are days of rejoicing with drinking. But whereas we start with wine (at Kiddush) before the challah on Shabbos and Festivals, because of the rule ונהפוך הוא (it was reversed) on Purim we have the wine after the challah. And it should be noted that the MKMG of יין is also 7!

3) Fish - The Mazel (Zodiac sign) of the month of Adar, and therefore eating fish at the Purim seudah is a סימן טוב. And not surprisingly the MKMG of דג is 7.

4) Liver - No festive meal could be considered complete without some Fleishig (at least for non-vegetarians), but on Purim we are told that this should be liver. The reason for this is that liver in Hebrew is כבד which relates to the word כבוד (honor) and another word for honor is יקר. Thus, liver alludes to the posuk in Esther 8:16 לַיְּהוּדִים הָיְתָה אוֹרָה וְשִׂמְחָה, וְשָׂשֹׂן וִיקָר - "The Jews had light and gladness, and joy and honor".

   But there is a dispute about which liver is the best to use. One opinion is to use turkey liver, because turkey is called הודו (give thanks), and thus alludes also to the thanksgiving of the day to Hashem for saving us. But others disagree because bird meat is not really meat, as it says in the Torah Bereishis 15:10 וְאֶת-הַצִּפֹּר לֹא בָתָר. Therefore, they hold that one should use beef liver.

5) Soufflé - The last thing is a fluffy dessert which the Rabbis explain is made from flour, eggs, almond milk and sugar, and what we would nowadays call a soufflé. It is not clear what this dessert alludes to.

These then are the five essential food items which we should have at our Purim seudah. And in order to make it easy for us to remember them, the Rabbis incorporated them into a song with a very catchy tune:

♫Challah, Wine, Fish, Liver, Soufflé   ♪Liver, Soufflé   ♪Liver, Soufflé♫
♫Challah, Wine, Fish, Liver, Soufflé   ♪Liver, Soufflé   ♪Liver, Soufflé♫
♫Ad She, Ad Shelo Yoda   ♪Ad She, Ad Shelo Yoda   ♪Ad Shelo Yoda♫
♫Ad She, Ad Shelo Yoda   ♪Ad She, Ad Shelo Yoda   ♪Ad Shelo Yoda♫

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Since we all know from Toras Imecha - aka Der yiddishe mama - "Drinking in the middle of a meal will fill you up!". Therefore the Rabbi's did not enact what we should eat by the Purim meal, since the main mitzva is to drink and they knew der yiddishe mama would get in the way were there certain traditional foods required to be to be eaten.

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  • One must eat Carobs (which sounds like swords in Hebrew)
  • One must eat eyes (which see - Lirot - which also mean "to shoot")
  • One must eat barbequed meat on a skewer.

All to remember the battle

  • One must also eat a young sheep to remember how Haman was hung.
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Two points (har har): 1. Carobs also look like swords. 2. Can we fulfill the requirement for eating carobs by eating carbs? –  Seth J Mar 3 at 4:55

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