How I Set My Purim Feast Table On a Budget

5 years ago

Hi! My name is Marlene Mamiye from The Jewish Hostess and I would like to share with you a little about my Purim table setting preparations from Purim 2011.

First, a little Purim history....

The story of Purim tells us all about how Esther, a Jewish woman in ancient Persia in the 4th century BCE, single-handedly went against the grain by using her own unique intelligence, wit, and sophistication to influence history, rise to Queen status, and convince King Achashverosh (who ruled over over 127 lands) to repeal a verdict in which he agreed to have every Jewish man woman and child executed on the 13th of Adar. This day subsequently turned into a commemorative fast day for all of the Jewish people, followed by a day of festivities on the 14th of Adar.

(for more Purim history check out

I love the holiday of Purim because it really reminds me that, as women, we can all be mini-Queen Esthers in our very own unique way. For me, the best part of being a "Jewish Hostess" is that we all own certain strengths, just like Queen Esther. We all own the power to rise up to the occasion and help fill community needs. We own the power to inspire greatness in our spouses and our children. We own the power to set the tone for a happy family and holiday atmosphere in our homes. It's time to start using, and re-using, our hidden "inner strengths".

For some of us, this might seem overwhelming. Let's begin with our very own Purim Seudah, which is the meat meal that is served on the day of Purim, which, this year, is Thursday, March 8.

  1. Start planning your Purim menu (see my menu below). Your family's taste buds never forget your delicious Purim delicacies.
  2. Begin thinking about your joyful holiday table. Mental snapshots of your memorable holiday tables will be stored somewhere in your kids' brains and will be dug up again when its their turn to create special holiday moments for their children. Don't be so serious with your table style (and I am the first one to talk)! I have to make an extreme effort to be a fun person, just ask my kids! Just remember—use YOUR OWN STYLE and let your imagination run free with your color schemes and themes.

Purim is special because it's a mitzvah (a blessing) to be JOYFUL and lighthearted, no matter what serious matters that we all might be going through.

Flashback to last year....

It was Thursday morning when I realized that I was so busy blogging about how everyone ELSE should be inspired for Purim, I couldn't believe I didn't have a Purim table setting idea, or menu plan of my own.

(Here's when a kid with a driver's license will come in handy.)

I always say that secret to a pretty table setting is to LAYER, LAYER, LAYER! One of my kids waited in the car while I ran in to Lana's Fabric on Kings Highway to buy Zebra polyester fabric—$5.99 a yard cut into 54-inch squares at a cost of about $25.

I placed the two squares as diamonds side by side on top of my white cotton hemstitch tablecloth.

Another of of my kids ran and bought me a pack of white paper napkins that look just like linen. $10.99. She also bought grey luncheon napkins for $4.99 that we decided to fold over the white large paper napkins.

I also bought a silver chain trim from the fabric store to use as napkin rings for $3.99 a yard. Pretty, no?It all cost about $15.

(You can also use this napkin idea for your Passover seder.)

(Send me pics if you come up with any cool ideas!!!!)

This is how the back of the napkin should tie:

These sterling ice coffee glasses were given to us a wedding gift by Aunt Sydelle and Uncle Mosie in the '80s. About 15 years later, I realized they were still sitting in the closet needing a good polish, so I decided to turn them into vases, and I haven't stopped using them since! My daughter ran out and bought me the dendrobium orchids from the corner flower kiosk up the block, and I stuck these exotic masks that I ordered from from AnytimeCostumes for about $10 each into the "vases".

So many of my goblets have broken over the years that I had to alternate clear goblets from Target with my pretty new blue goblets given to me as a Rosh Hashanah gift from my new "consuegra"- (Syrian word for my daughter's mother-in-law.)

Lunch was not bad, if I don't say so myself. Since the Purim Seudah is traditionally a meat one, we had grilled chicken with kalamata olives and tomatoes on salad:

Grilled minute steak roast:

Wild rice with spinach and sauteed red peppers, plain white rice (for the kids), and home made za'ata challah rolls filled with sliced turkey:

Mini lahamageen:

Mini kibbe, tehine, baked mini sweet potatoes, and pareve kibbe neye:

Whole wheat mazor's dough with meat hammentashen filling:

Fried chicken (for the kids), and my sister Jeanette brought chicken tacos that got wiped out.

I hope I have given you some Purim table and menu inspiration! Trust me—it will keep them coming back for more!

Please check out my site The Jewish Hostess for more table decor ideas and great kosher recipes!

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