Purim, which literally means “lots” and is sometimes known as the Feast of Lots, is the Jewish holiday in which Jews commemorate being saved from persecution in the ancient Persian Empire.
It is traditional to have a jovial feast on the evening of the holiday. Drinking alcohol is typically a part of the Purim holiday celebration — in fact, the requirement in the Talmud goes so far as to instruct that one should get so drunk that they can’t tell the difference between the phrases Arur Haman (“cursed is Haman”) and Baruch Mordechai (“blessed is Mordecai”). Because of this, you’ll find lots of tasty cocktail options below – although it’s important to note that anybody who has trouble with alcohol should not follow this tradition. Staying healthy is most important. That’s why I have also included some delicious alcohol-free mocktail recipes below!
Traditional foods for Purim include Hamantaschen (“ears of Haman”), a triangular cookie usually filled with different fruit flavors, chocolate, or a poppy seed filling known as “mohn,” which is supposed to represent either Haman’s ears or his three-cornered hat. Throughout the years I’ve mastered the art of making hamantaschen (both buttery and dairy-free) and have shared my tips and tricks, as well as a variety of fillings, in this recipe collection.
Kreplach are also popular for this holiday – small triangular dumplings filled with meat, mashed potatoes, or other fillings. Other traditional foods include dishes made with beans, a reminder of what Queen Esther ate in the king’s palace in order to avoid eating non-kosher foods. Because of this Esther/ legume tradition, Purim is often celebrated with a vegetarian meal.