According to Food & Wine, the Ashkenazi jews who settled across central Europe generally do not eat lamb during the Passover, as eating this animal likens to eating a sacrifice intended for God. This practice stems from lamb’s original purpose as a sacrificial animal in Judaism, and should only be slaughtered for Temple sacrifice. Sephardic Jews differ in this practice. This sect, which settled throughout present-day Spain and Portugal, eat lamb at Passover to symbolically re-enact the exodus of Jews from Egypt. This group can enjoy pan-seared lamb, but still can’t roast the meat.
If you attend a Passover feast this coming weekend, you can expect a ton of great, age-honored foods that guarantee to have you coming back for seconds. Depending on which tradition your family or friend group follows, expect to enjoy some lamb, another form of meat, or no meat at all. Regardless of what centerpiece graces the table, you can expect to have a delicious meal while participating in this momentous holiday.