Many years ago I was approached by an older couple to help sell their home. They had raised their family of five in this house and had lived there for over 35 years. It was a cute four bedroom that was kept nicely and seemed to fit very neatly into what a normal house might look like in suburban Northern New Jersey. When we got to the basement both the husband and wife started to get very excited. “We have something very special to show you!” they exclaimed with beaming smiles from ear to ear. “We have a summer kitchen downstairs and it will surely make this home more desirable.”
I didn’t know what to expect, but when we got downstairs to their high ceilinged spacious basement, I was certainly surprised and excited to learn about this family’s long standing tradition of cooking and canning fresh tomatoes every August and September, as the fruit finished its full bloom and the end of the tomato season was nearing. Many ideas were racing through my head but the first was the overwhelming smell of stewing tomato sauce. It would be impossible to have showings during this time of the year as the entire house smelled like a pizzeria and might turn off many buyers.
I went home and told my husband about this newest find and we both shared a moment/laugh thinking over the basic life lesson that no matter how long you are alive in this world you will always discover something that you never knew existed. Back to my listing. I didn’t think many of my buyers would appreciate a “summer kitchen.” This concept was something I had never heard of before and who needs a second kitchen anyway? And then it hit me. Who else would benefit from a second kitchen in the home?
A Passover kitchen!
How many of us would have been thrilled to have a second kitchen in our homes during the past two years when even the most ardent “Pesach away from home” believers were pretty much forced to set their own Seder tables and chop their own walnuts for the charoset.
I reported back to my new sellers, who had come to the U.S. from southern Italy and did not know much about Passover, and after a crash course in Passover cleaning 101 they were thrilled to discover that their home contained the very sought after “Pesach kitchen.” We spent the better part of an afternoon putting away glass jars and other assorted canning supplies. We aired out the basement from the heavy oregano smell and a few days later the showings began.
Nechama Polak is the broker of record and owner of V and N Group LLC located at 1401 Palisade Ave in Teaneck. [email protected] 201 826 8809.