Erub Tabshilin means "mixing of [cooked] foods," whereby one prepares a plate with food prior to a Jewish Holiday (Yom Tob) which will be followed by a Shabbat. This year the seventh day of Pesach will be followed by a Shabbat, so we need to arrange the Erub.
Cooking is allowed on Jewish Holidays as we learn from Shemot 12:16 "...do no do any work on these days (Yom Tob=Holidays), except preparing food for everyone to eat-that is all you may do". We can cook whatever will be used for consumption during that day, but we cannot prepare or cook food to be consumed after that particular day of the Holiday. Thus, when a Holiday occurs on Friday we cannot cook from Yom Tob to Shabbat, unless the Erub Tabshilin is performed.
Erub Tabshilin consists of cooking prior to Yom Tob (in our case, today!) some food for Shabbat. Today, Thursday April 12, around 7.00 PM (NYT) we put aside a plate with cooked and baked food prior to Yom Tob, keeping this food for Sabbath. Then, since some food is already prepared for Shabbat, the cooking that will take place on the holiday itself will be considered a mere addition, an extension (the word 'erub' means in this and other contexts "extension") to the cooking that has already begun before the Holiday started. When we start cooking for Shabbat before the Holiday begins, our rabbis authorized to continue cooking and preparing food from Yom Tob to Shabbat.
According to our community's Minhag we place at least one cooked egg and one Matza in a plate. (Many people will add also meat, rice or other types of food).
The following Berakha is recited--generally by the husband--while holding the plate (Erub) in one's hands:
"Baruch Ata A-donay E-lohenu Melech ha'Olam Asher Kiddeshanu beMitzvotav veTsivanu AL MITZVAT ERUB"
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ אֱלֹהֵֽינוּ מֶֽלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, אֲשֶׁר קִדְּשָֽׁנוּ בְּמִצְוֹתָיו, וְצִוָּֽנוּ עַל מִצְוַת עֵרוּב
Then we read the following text which says that by doing this'erub we are allowed to do all necessary cooking from Yom Tob to Shabbat.
בַּדֵין עֵרוּבָא יְהֵא שָׁרֵא לָֽנָא לַאֲפוּיֵי וּלְבַשּׁוּלֵי וּלְאַטְמוּנֵי וּלְאַדְלוּקֵי שְׁרָגָא וּלְתַקָּנָא וּלְמֶעְבַּד כָּל צָרְכָּֽנָא, מִיּוֹמָא טָבָא לְשַׁבְּתָא
Then we place the plate in the refrigerator.
For the concept of 'erub to make sense, we have to actually eat that food at some point during Shabbat (April 13th at night, or April 14th).
Every household should do the Erub Tabshilin but if one forgets, cooking from Yom Tob to Shabbat will still be permitted relying on the 'erub that the community Rabbi said, in which he normally would include all community members.
(In Yom Tob we can cook by lighting a fire from a fire lit before Yom Tob. This is done by leaving a candle lit from today, before the Holiday begins)
* Candle lighting today Thursday April 12th at 7:14 PM (NYC )
* Candle lighting tomorrow Friday April 13th at 7:15 PM (NYC)
* Shabbat and Pesach end Saturday April 14th at 8:24 PM (NYC)
HAOMER (These restriction DO NOT apply during Pesach!)