Friday, July 20, 2012

Siyyum Party

After I received all the Bat Mitzvah embroidery projects, we had a party.  Everyone brought something to the party – cold drinks, popcorn, Ethiopian coffee, traditional Ethiopian dishes and I brought chocolate-peanut butter-oatmeal balls and peanut butter rice crispy squares. The manager of the absorption center, the gal who organized all the bat/bar mitzvah projects and the actual event (July 19th in Jerusalem), an Ethiopian male worker and two American visitors joined my translator, the bat mitzvah girls and their mothers and myself. The manager gave a bracha (blessing) to all the bat mitzvah girls to succeed, followed by another blessing from the Ethiopian male worker. He then said hamotzei and cut the Dabo (Ethiopian Shabbat Bread), which was served to everyone there.
Bruria, Manager of Absorption Center
Uvnish, my translator

Dabo is a dense bread that is lightly spiced with nigella seeds and turmeric. It is typically made in a round frying pan and cooked on the stove covered for about 25 minutes. A couple of women made Injera, an unique Ethiopian staple bread. It has a distinct taste, which comes from its tangy flavor and the use of Teff flour and is a thin flat bread, like crepes. Injera was served with Amhari Mesir Wat (Spicy Ethiopian Lentil Bowl).

We had traditional Ethiopian music playing throughout the party.  Some of the girls and women did traditional dancing, which is mostly upper body movement.  My translator came over dancing and got me up to dance with her – I did my best to copy her movements.  We all had a really nice time.  Some of the girls and women thanked me and talked about their experiences learning embroidery and making their Bat Mitzvah projects. Teaching them has been very rewarding, and then to hear that so many enjoyed it, it really made me feel so good.
girls dancing


  1. Sounds like a wonderful finale to the course. Are you going to do the same thing again or something different? Yehudit R.(I didn't want to be anonymous. I just couldn't figure out how to make any other profile work for me.

  2. It will all depend on the next group of girls and mothers. I would like to do some kind of party once we finish - it was a lot of fun for us all!

  3. This is so awesome, Michal!! The pictures are great and the description of the activities and food is exciting... you had a wonderful time. How rewarding and that during these days where we pray for geula b'rachamim, you have shown ahavat Yisrael... i miss you and Zelda.

    1. Thanks Rahel! Great hearing from you. We miss you too.