Saturday, October 1st, 2016

Something Juicy On The Seder Plate

Published on March 25, 2010 by   ·   11 Comments Pin It

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My twenties took me cross-country five times in a biodiesel VW camper van.  I went to Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival, Rainbow Gatherings, Vipassana meditation, and yoga retreats.  I worked at a Unitarian Universalist New Age conference center, built strawbale houses on an ecovillage in Missouri, and wore my dreadlocks proud in the Santa Cruz gay pride parade wearing a sign that said “Not Your Earth Mama.”  I led myself out of the “Egypt” of Jewish white middle class suburbia and public school and “liberated” my inner teenager & free spirit.  Moving to Atlanta from California eventually, I went to Kwanzaa, Midnight Mass, AND Hanukkah celebrations… meditating my way through it all with “Morning Pages,” “Manifesting,” and the “Hour of Power.”

Debra Jill Mazer

The Author, Debra Jill Mazer

This was a far cry from UAHC (reform Jewish) summer camp, BBYO (high school youth group), Brandeis (where I earned my sociology degree), and bat mitzvahs (we’ve all been there ;)).
But maybe not so far away…

In 2003, writing the Haggadah was really all about reclaiming my power within my family and refusing to claim the “black sheep” title anymore.   But then it became about fusing all that my New Age, environmental, eclectic, multicultural, spiritual journey had taught me, and bringing it all back to my Jewish roots.

In 2005 I met a Reconstructionist Cantor while giving a talk about Raw Foods at the local Feminist Bookstore.  (No joke!! ;))  It has all matzah-balled from there (vegan, of course ;)).

Together we reconstructed my Haggadah and poured our hearts and souls into questioning, questioning, and speaking our truths.

In 2009 we met a Graphic Designer who took all of my photos and illustrations from my journey of my 20’s, our words & letters, including the true story of the Orange on the Seder Plate, an added Olive, Miriam’s Cup, Martin Luther King, Jr., and more, and made it into a real & true book!

This year, my journey is complete and the book has been printed and sold across the country & internationally.

Recently we received an exciting review in the old-time Jewish newspaper, The Forward:

“Personally, I most enjoyed the DIY one – Debra Jill Mazer’s “Open-Eyed Heart-Wide Haggadah” – because it’s the closest to the kind of Judaism I practice: heart-centered, serious about tradition but not defined by it, politically aware, creative, idiosyncratic and post-denominational.” – Jay Michaelson

If you’re in Atlanta, come check out our first and second night seders at East Lake Commons Cohousing & Trees Atlanta (cool nonprofit with a LEED-certified event space), respectively.   Here:
Open-Eyed Heart-Wide Haggadah by Debra Jill Mazer, $32.95

Open-Eyed Heart-Wide Haggadah by Debra Jill Mazer, $32.95

You can find & purchase “Open-Eyed Heart-Wide Haggadah” at
by Debra Jill Mazer, in collaboration with Cantor Shira Leba Batalion, designed by Margo Jennifer Akroyd

Double Gemini Press, 62 pages, $28.95. Media and large sales contact: purchase online:

A recipe from the book:


makes 8 gefilte “wishes”
1 knife & cutting board, 1 food processor, 1 large mixing bowl, 1 wooden spoon/clean hands, 1 tray dehydrator (if you don’t have one, you can set your oven at a low temp.)
(use organic whenever possible for better energy & taste!)
  • 2 c dry raw almonds, soaked overnight in filtered water (use 4 cups water)
  • 2 c carrots, chopped coarsely
  • 1 carrot, cut into fine rounds, for decoration
  • 2 stalks celery, cut into chunks
  • 1/4 c sweet/vidalia onion, cut into chunks
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 c dulse flakes
  • 1/4 c kelp granules
  • 1/4 c fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/8 c cold-pressed olive oil
  • pinch – 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper, to taste
1) Add garlic, onion, carrots, and celery chunks into the food processor, and chop as finely as possible.  Transfer into the mixing bowl.2) Next, process soaked almonds in the food processor, adding lemon juice, olive oil, adding filtered water little by little if needed, until the almonds become a dough. 3) Add almond “dough,” kelp, dulse, & cayenne to the mixing bowl.4) Mix w/ spoon, or clean hands for added love!5) Form into gefilte-shaped patties and line onto your dehydrator sheet or cookie sheet.  Decorate top w/ thin carrot slices, just like out of the jar! ;) 6) Set dehydrator/oven to 105 degrees, dehydrate/bake for 5 hours, or until solid enough to stay together, while still being soft on the inside.  Flip halfway through if desired.
Get ready to impress guests with The BEST Gefilte “Fish” they have ever tasted!  What a Beautiful “WISH”!!!

Debra Jill Mazer is a singer, performance artist, writer, dancer, raw vegan chef, actress, and goddess bather.  Although she could spend all day at Dillard’s, she also loves sleeping under the stars.

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