A table set with traditional foods and symbols of the holiday. The dish in the center is Mofletta.
Official nameHebrew: מימונה
Observed byNorth African Jews
SignificanceCelebration of the end of prohibition of chametz
Begins21st day of Nisan in Israel; 22nd day of Nisan outside of Israel
Ends22nd day of Nisan in Israel; 23rd day of Nisan outside of Israel
Date21 Nisan, 22 Nisan, 23 Nisan
Related toPassover
Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin at a Mimouna celebration in Jerusalem in 1979

Mimouna (Hebrew: מימונה Arabic: ميمونة) is a traditional Moroccan Jewish celebration held the day after Passover. It marks the start of spring and the return to eating chametz, i.e., leavened bread and bread by-products, which are forbidden throughout the week of Passover.

Origin of name

Some believe the source of the name is Rabbi Maimon ben Yosef, father of the Rambam, Rabbi Moshe Ben Maimon, and the Mimouna marks the date of his birth or death.[1]

Others say that the name Mimouna derives from the Arabic word for “wealth” and “good luck,” or the Hebrew word “emuna” (faith) or “ma’amin” (believe). [2]


The celebration begins after nightfall on the last day of Passover. In many communities, non-Jewish neighbors sell bread products back to Jewish families as a beginning of the celebration. Moroccan and Algerian Jews throw open their homes to visitors, after setting out a lavish spread of traditional holiday cakes and sweetmeats. One of the holiday favorites is Mofletta.[1] The table is also laid with various symbols of luck and fertility, with an emphasis on the number "5," such as five pieces of gold jewelry or five beans arranged on a leaf of pastry.[3]

In Israel, the Mimouna has become a popular annual happening featuring outdoor parties, picnics and BBQs. After settling in Israel, Jewish immigrants from North Africa (Maghrebim) celebrated the Mimouna with their families. In 1966, it was introduced as a national holiday, and has been adopted by other ethnic groups, mainly in the Mizrahi sector.[4]


  1. ^ a b "Mimouna Customs". Jewish Agency for Israel. 2011. Retrieved 21 June 2011.
  2. ^ Mimouna: A Moroccan Jewish Celebration
  3. ^ Bin-Nun, Yigal (8 April 2007). "Lady Luck: In Morocco, Mimouna was a feast day designed to appease a local she-devil, and contained no religious components. In Israel, however, its pagan origins have been ignored". Haaretz. Retrieved 21 June 2011.
  4. ^ "Mimouna in Israel". Jewish Agency for Israel. 2011. Retrieved 21 June 2011.