Dis­cover the smart way to screen for chametz


SHAKE UP Passover prepa­ra­tion in your house this year — by get­ting the apps. Smart­phone tech­nol­ogy is em­brac­ing the ex­o­dus and it is worth check­ing out what it has to of­fer to lessen the hum­drum na­ture out of get­ting ready for the hol­i­day.

G-dcast (the de­vel­op­ers’ spell­ing, not mine) has come up with an app called Let’s Get Ready For Passover. It opens to a page of a car­toon boy and girl hold­ing Passover foods, as Dayenu plays, with four op­tions for the user: play, learn, bake and sur­prise.

Choose “play” and you get to take part in a fun game based on the search­for-chametz cer­e­mony con­ducted the night be­fore Passover. You lo­cate the leav­ened items in the rooms with your fin­ger, start­ing in the bed­room of a young­ster who has left chal­lah on the chair and pasta on the floor. Once this is achieved, you can move on through the other rooms.

“It’s good be­cause it has plenty of lev­els to get through, and it is fun,” says Libby, my seven-year-old. “It helps you feel that Pe­sach is com­ing.” The learn”sec­tion fea­tures a short text about Passover, the bake sec­tion con­sists of a recipe for matzah brei. The oth­ers sec­tion is a sur­prise for when you com­plete the game, so I should not say what it is.

Like Libby, I en­joyed this app, though I did feel the learn and bake sec­tions could have been more imag­i­na­tive and in the case of “bake” bet­ter ti­tled, as matzah brei is fried.

The No Chametz

— Sell, Search,

De­stroy ap­pli­ca­tion is more se­ri­ous-minded.

It is a com­pendium of laws and rules for get­ting rid of your leaven. “This app will help you make sure you prop­erly re­move chametz un­der your own­er­ship,” prom­ises the devel­oper, RustyBrick Inc. The app an­swers com­mon ques­tions that arise pre-Passover and, de­spite its earnest ap­proach, has some fun fea­tures.

Our favourite was the can­dle-and­feather func­tion for the chametz search. It shows you the view from your cam­era — with a can­dle and a feather su­per­im­posed on the screen.

We “mir­rored” the live pic­ture to our tele­vi­sion through Ap­ple TV, so the whole fam­ily could see the chametz search, even if they stayed in the liv­ing room.

Chabad’s Passover As­sis­tant teaches how to chant the Four Ques­tions in your pre­ferred He­brew ac­cent, while show­ing you the text in He­brew, trans­la­tion and translit­er­a­tion.

The app gives you all the times for start and end of the fes­ti­val and the Passover Shab­bat and also has a nifty func­tion for that most in­tim­i­dat­ing of tasks: plan­ning Passover menus.

You de­cide what you want to make for dif­fer­ent meals and then in­put the ingredients needed. The app has a shop­ping-list func­tion and the ingredients from your meal-plan­ning ex­er­cise will be au­to­mat­i­cally added to this.

And there are recipes, which can be al­lo­cated to spe­cific days on the meal plan­ner. Now all we need is an app to do the cook­ing.

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