Lighten up for Chanukah

When the days are short and the long, cold winter nights descend early, Chanukah, also known as the Festival of Lights, arrives.

Chanukah celebrates the miracle that took place over 2,000 years ago, when a tiny band of Maccabees were victorious over their enemies and a little jar of oil, enough to burn for only one day, miraculously burned for eight.

In honour of the miracle that occurred with the oil, it is traditional to eat fried foods such as potato latkas (pancakes) and doughnuts (sufganiyot). Dairy dishes are also customary.


Candles are lit each night for eight nights. You can avoid messy drips from your Chanukah menorah (candelabra) by placing it on a tray lined with a sheet of cooking parchment. (Make a pretty border on the parchment by cutting the edges with pinking shears.) When the candles have burned down, just discard the parchment.

It’s best to remove wax from your candelabra or candlesticks as soon as possible, while the wax is still warm. Place candlesticks under hot running water or soak them for a few minutes – the wax will melt quickly. Dry with a soft, dry cloth or silver polishing cloth. Don’t try to scratch off the wax or use steel wool – you might damage the finish.


For your Chanukah baking, roll cookie dough between two layers of parchment paper to save on cleanup.

Arrange unbaked cookies on parchment-lined baking sheets. (No greasing needed!) Bake cookies according to recipe directions. Nothing sticks and cookies will just slide off! The parchment can be re-used several times – just a quick wipe between uses will suffice.