Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Another reason to want to be Sephardi

I so dislike the difficulties caused by the Ashkenazi rules about dairy and meat equipment. Bad enough to need 4 sets of pots, but 6 is really ridiculous. It is interesting to me that in this issue they don't cite Ashkenazi practice. Although the list in question is Sephardi, they usually mention Askhenazic custom when it differs.


The Rabbi Jacob S. Kassin Memorial Halacha Series
Authored by Rabbi Eli J. Mansour (5/8/2007)

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Description: Is It Permissible to Use A Meat Pot To Cook A Parve Item That Will Be Mixed With A Dairy Item


Is it permissible to cook rice, or some other parve food, in a pot that had been used for meat, and then eat the parve food with milk or another dairy product? We refer, of course, to a case where the pot is clean and does not contain any actual particles of meat on its surface. Does the fact that the pot had been used for meat render it forbidden to use the food cooked in that pot with dairy foods? (This question arises with regard to the traditional "M'gedra" (rice and lentils) which is commonly eaten with yoghurt.)

There is a Halachic concept discussed in the Yoreh Dei'a section of Shulchan Aruch called "Notein Ta'am Bar Notein Ta'am Le'heteira." This term refers to a case like the one described above, of a clean pot that does not contain any meat, but does contain the taste of meat within its walls. When food is cooked in that pot, the taste embedded within the walls now enters the cooked food, and we refer to this "second degree taste" as "Notein Ta'am Bar Notein Ta'am." According to Halacha, if the food cooked in the pot is parve, and thus no violation occurs when it is cooked in the pot (as opposed to a case of dairy food cooked in a meat pot), the food remains parve and may be eaten together with milk. Since the parve food contains only a "Notein Ta'am Bar Notein Ta'am," and not the original taste of meat, it retains its parve status, and one may eat it with milk or other dairy products.

The question then becomes whether or not one may prepare a parve food in a meat pot with the initial intention of eating it with dairy foods. Thus far we have established that a parve food that had been prepared in a meat pot may be used with dairy products. But does this Halacha apply only if this occurred inadvertently, or even "Le'chatechila" (optimally)?

The Shulchan Aruch rules that one may use the parve food with dairy foods only "Be'di'avad" (after the fact, if it was mistakenly prepared in a meat pot). However, in "Bedek Ha'bayit," revisions to the "Beit Yosef" that Maran (author of the Shulchan Aruch) published after writing the Shulchan Aruch, he cites the position of Rabbenu Yerucham (Provence-Spain, 1280-1350) who allowed cooking parve food in a meat pot even with the initial intention of using it with dairy products. This is, indeed, the ruling of Chacham Ovadia Yosef, in his work Yabia Omer. Rabbi Shlomo Amar (current Sephardic Chief Rabbi of the State of Israel) likewise follows this position in his work of responsa, and Chacham Ovadia, in an introduction he wrote to Rabbi Amar's work, commends Rabbi Amar for his courage in publishing this lenient position.

It should be noted that this Halacha applies equally in the reverse case, of a parve food prepared in a dairy pot that one wishes to eat with meat. One may cook a parve food in a dairy pot even with the initial intention of eating it together with meat.

Furthermore, this Halacha applies regardless of whether or not the pot had been used with meat or milk within the previous twenty-four hours. Although regarding many Halachot we distinguish between utensils that had been used for meat or milk within the last twenty-four hours and those that have not, with respect to this Halacha no such distinction is made.

Summary: It is permissible to cook a parve food in a meat pot and then eat it with dairy foods, or to cook a parve food in a dairy pot and then eat it with meat, provided that the pot is clean. One may cook the parve food in a meat pot even with the initial intention of eating it with dairy foods, and vice versa. This applies regardless of whether or not the pot had been used with meat or dairy foods within the previous twenty-four hours.

See Halichot Olam, Helek 7, Page 74.

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7 comments:

Malka Esther said...

I so wish you were sephardi. Although then we'd have a 6 hour wait between milk and meat so maybe yekke is good.

Larry Lennhoff said...

1) Early morning selichot for a month (not your problem, admittedly)
2) Beit Yossef Glatt
3) Tougher bishul akum
4) Sephardit Tahor nonsense (dust and ashes, baby, dust and ashes)
5) Is rice on pesach worth it if you have to check each grain 3 times?

SephardiLady said...

I have been thinking about making a post on Kashrut halacha vs. Kashrut practices. Sephardi halacha aside, I know so many Ashkenazi ladies who will not do what Ashkenazi poskim permit because it doesn't feel right. Imagine their sheer horror if I told them the positions of Sephardi Chachamim. They would not believe me!

BTW-For #5, see askrabbimaroof.blogspot.com for another opinion on checking rice three times. He has a Pesach doc up that is interesting. But, not all Sepahrdim eat rice (including us), so I can't really concern myself with it too much.

Larry Lennhoff said...

Actually, according to academics, kashrut is an area of halacha in which stringency has traditionally come from the am and not from the gedolim. Bli neder I'll try and post a reference to the one article I have a home this evening.

And we spend a lot of time learning different minhagim, since Malka Esther functions as a mentor to people from many different backgrounds and I am just fascinated by the topic.

SephardiLady said...

I agree with you the stringency does not come from halacha, but from the Am. . . . much of the blame can certaintly be laid at the doorstep of the ladies.

I am also fascinated by minghagim and occassionally pull out a map to visually place the origions of minhagim and their spread.

Ari Kinsberg said...

sephardilady:

"much of the blame can certaintly be laid at the doorstep of the ladies."

especially since domestic responsibilities, including kashrut, were the domain of the ladies.

cool yiddishe mama said...

"Actually, according to academics, kashrut is an area of halacha in which stringency has traditionally come from the am and not from the gedolim. Bli neder I'll try and post a reference to the one article I have a home this evening."

CYM: "For example, separate keilim are not discussed in Shulchan Arukh (but is the "gold standard" that kashrut is measured). In my neighbourhood, the wealthy have taken it upon themselves to have two completely separate kitchens. If these chumrot continue, no one will actually understand the halakhah. What next? Separate houses? 24 hour waiting period between basar and halav?