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Transcript
KOSHER BASICS
Well over one million Jewish consumers
keep a kosher home--observing Jewish
dietary laws that have been passed down
over thousands of years.
Keeping kosher is an important part of the
daily life of a Jew. Understanding the
kosher basics will help you assure your
observant employers or clients that their
kosher practices will continue.
Kosher means “fit and proper”. It does not
mean food blessed by a rabbi. Although
kosher rules might seem very complicated
at first, putting them into practice is like
anything else that takes getting used to---such as learning to drive a car.
THE BIG THREE
Foods can be grouped into three broad categories:
Always acceptable as
kosher. Includes raw fruits &
vegetables that have not been further
processed.
Never kosher. The
Bible prohibits certain foods for
Jews, including: shellfish, fish
without both fins & scales, &
pork.
Kosher supervised. These foods
may be kosher when produced under
the authority of a rabbi or kosher
certification agency to ensure
ingredients & food processing
procedures meet kosher dietary
requirements.
In kosher products, all of the component
ingredients are certified kosher, including any
processing aids that contact the food. The
production equipment must be kosher, too.
Processed foods must be prepared under
rabbinical supervision. To help the kosher
consumer identify kosher foods, many
certification agencies have put their
trademarked symbols on their supervised
products. These symbols include:
THE BIG FOUR
All kosher foods can be grouped into four further
categories, as well.
MEAT: Meat, fowl, and their
byproducts (e.g. soup, bones,
or gravy) are referred to as
“fleishig” or “basar”. Kosher
fowl and meat (from animals
that chew their cud and have
split hooves), must come from
a kosher species, and be
slaughtered by specially
trained ritual slaughterers.
Cows, sheep, goats, and
chicken are in this category.
DAIRY: This includes all foods derived from or containing
milk, such as milk, butter, yogurt, and cheese. Even milk
derivatives, such as casein and whey, are considered dairy
when used in kosher foods. These foods are referred to as
“milchig” or “chalav”. All dairy products require reliable
kosher supervision.
FISH: Kosher fish must have fins
and easily removable scales.
PAREVE: These neutral foods contain neither
meat nor dairy, or their derivatives. They must also
not have been prepared or processed with meat or
dairy equipment. These include fresh fruits and
vegetables, grains, pasta, soft drinks, fish and eggs.
Speaking of eggs, eggs must be checked for blood
spots, prior to cooking them, by breaking them one
at a time, into a glass. According to kosher laws,
an egg containing a blood spot may not be eaten.
Only boiled eggs are allowed to be eaten without
checking for blood spots.
Certain fruits, vegetables and grains must also be checked
for the presence of small insects and larvae which would
render them non-kosher. These include: Strawberries,
raspberries, lettuce, cabbage, spinach, broccoli, cauliflower,
dill, and parsley. In addition, Israeli produce is subject to
special kosher rules.
More on the subject of pareve:
• Pareve foods can generally be served with either meat
or dairy meals.
• If a pareve food is cooked in a meat pot, it should only
be served on meat dishes with meat serving utensils &
cutlery.
• If a pareve food is cooked in a dairy pot, it should only be
served on dairy dishes with dairy serving utensils and
cutlery.
• If you cut a sharp & spicy pareve food (e.g., onions,
garlic, lemons, and pickles) with a meat knife, it is
considered as having a meat status and may not be
used with dairy foods, and vice versa when it comes to
cutting one of these pareve foods with a dairy knife.
OTHER KOSHER RULES:
Dairy & meat cannot be
served together during
the same meal.
There is a waiting period
(between 1-6 hours,
according to custom)
after eating meat before
eating dairy, and after
eating hard cheese
before eating meat.
Even though fish is
pareve & may be eaten at
both meat & dairy meals,
at a meat meal it must be
prepared and served with
separate utensils.
Fish may be eaten either
before or after meat.
SEPARATE BUT EQUAL
• The kosher home has at
least 2 sets of dishes,
silverware, pots, pans,
and utensils—one for
meat, one for dairy.
• They are kept in separate
cabinets & drawers,
marked meat and dairy.
• There is often a color
scheme in the kosher
kitchen—e.g., red for
meat, blue for dairy—to
more easily tell all the
meat & dairy items apart.
Since meat & dairy must be kept separate
throughout the kosher kitchen, this also applies
to the sink, tables, countertops, refrigerators
and freezers, the stove top, the oven and
broiler, portable electric broilers, small
appliances, and dishwashers. Many kosher
homes also have some separate pareve dishes,
silverware, pots, pans, and utensils.
THE KITCHEN SINK IN THE
KOSHER HOME
•
•
•
•
The ideal situation in the kosher
home is to have 2 separate
sinks—one for meat, one for
dairy—since these dishes &
utensils cannot be washed
together.
If there is only one sink in
which both meat & dairy dishes
are washed, the inside of the
sink is considered treif (nonkosher). Therefore, one set of
dishes should be washed at a
time, using separate dish pans
atop slightly elevated meat &
dairy racks.
The sink should be scrubbed
clean between washing each
set of dishes.
NO FOOD OR DISHES SHOULD
BE PUT DIRECTLY INTO A SINK
THAT IS USED TO WASH BOTH
MEAT & DAIRY DISHES.
Additional kitchen rules:
• Dishes & utensils must be
dried using separate
racks or dishtowels.
• Separate meat & dairy
sponges, scouring pads
(which require
certification if they contain
soap), and draining
boards must be used.
• Sponges & scouring pads
used to clean a single
sink must not be used on
the dishes, silverware,
pots, pans & utensils.
The Kosher Table
• A table can be
used at different
times for meat
and dairy if
different meat
and dairy
tablecloths or
placemats are
used.
The Kosher Countertop
• Different
countertops or
work areas are
used for meat and
dairy. Separate
coverings must be
used, if one area
must be used for
both.