Kashrus

Shemita Question

Dear Rabbi Simon I have a shemita question: I accidentally bought a bunch of Israeli basil which is now in my fridge . What should I do with it? Many thanks Rosemary Dear Rosemary, Thank you for your question. Basil is subject to the law of sefichin, which essentially means one should not eat it, as produce of the field (as…

Kosher Bread Options

Dear Rabbi Simon A post-Pesach question: are we allowed to have fresh farm bread if no access to kosher bread? Thanks, Brad Dear Brad Thank you for your question. In certain countries (such as France, Switzerland and elsewhere) baguettes and similar are baked without objectionable additives or even release agents such as oil or shortening which may be animal-derived. These…

Kosher Kitchen Upgrade

Dear Rabbi Simon We need to replace our cooker (oven and stove top), and I was wondering what the best options are from a kashrut perspective. I know a self-cleaning oven is useful for Pesach, but is a catalytic liner acceptable (as opposed to pyrolytic)? I understand that with pyrolytic, the grease builds up on the coating, and gets burned…

Glass Challah board

Dear Rabbi Simon Does a glass challah board require tevillah [immersion in a mikveh, as is generally required for metal and glass utensils]? Thank you Chana Hi Chana Yes it does, but I would advise without a berachah. In many cases, such an item comes from Israel and may well be Jewish-made (in which case tevillah is not required). But…

New Cooker Advice (follow-up)

Dear Rabbi Simon, In a recent Ask the Rabbi, you said that you recommend a pyrolytic oven for Pesach purposes.  Any other halachic questions to bear in mind when buying an oven? Thank you Owen Dear Owen Thank you for your question. The properties of a pyrolytic oven are certainly useful for Pesach (or other) kashering needs, and the catalytic…

New Cooker Advice

Dear Rabbi Simon, We need to replace our cooker (oven and stove top), and I was wondering what the best options are from a kashrut perspective. I know a self-cleaning oven is useful for Pesach, but is a catalytic liner acceptable (as oppose to pyrolytic). I understand that with pyrolytic, the grease builds up on the coating, and gets burns…

Kashering a Saucepan

Dear Rabbi Simon, I have a halachic question: I have a meat Teflon saucepan that by mistake I washed in a dairy dishwasher. Shall I toss it or keep it? Thank you. Sue Dear Sue, There is no need to discard your saucepan. I would recommend kashering it by filling it near to the top with water then heating it…

Kosher Energy Drinks

Dear Rabbi Simon, There aren’t many items which have a kashrut symbol where I live. I want to get some energy drinks. What should I look out for to avoid non-kosher drinks? Many thanks, Avigail Dear Avigail, TY for your question. My best practical advice is to make use of the Is It Kosher? app https://isitkosher.uk/. This has extensive lists of…

Toivelling Slow Cooker Pot After Use

Dear Rabbi Simon Thank you for getting back to me last week regarding my Slow Cooker question. However, to my dismay, I just realised something: I never toivelled (ie immersed in a mikveh) the ceramic pot! My questions: 1) Even if the ceramic pot wasn’t toivelled, the food heated in it is still kosher – is my assumption correct? 2) Does…

Milky Pan, Meaty Lid

Dear Rabbi Simon I’d appreciate your help please. I heated up some parev pasta sauce in a milk saucepan although one which has never had milk it. Without thinking, unfortunately I used a meat saucepan lid.  As far as we recall we never have used meat in the saucepan that the lid should be used for. Can the lid and saucepan…

Questions & Answers
this week

Questions and Answers

Ask the Rabbi: Quinoa on Pesach
Dear Rabbi Simon,
Where do you stand on quinoa (and the kitniyot ban) for Pesach?
Many thanks,
Tzippy
***
Dear Tzippy,
In line with other American authorities, I am in favour of quinoa. Although I reject completely the voices (mostly from Israel) seeking to abolish the ban on kitniyot entirely, IMO we do not need to include in the prohibition pseudo-grains that were unknown in the Old World until modern times. Best to buy with a Pesach hechsher though, to be free of any possible wheat contamination.
Rabbi Rashi Simon
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