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Showing posts from March, 2013

Good News for Chocolate Lovers!

Rav Eliezer Melamed is the Rosh Yeshiva of Yeshivat Har Bracha in Beit El and is a prolific author on Halacha. His series of clear, yet comprehensive, Halachic works called Pninei Halacha are mainstays of baalei batim and yeshiva students alike.

Chapter 9 of his Pninei Halacha: the Laws of Pesach has recently been posted to Scribd and it offers good news for chocolate lovers:
Chocolate and candy labeled “Kosher for Pesach only for those who eat kitniyot"  are technically permissible even for those who do not eat kitniyot, because the kitniyot in these products are added before Pesach and are batel be-rov. In addition, these products generally contain kitniyot oils, which, according to several leading poskim, are not included in the custom to prohibit kitniyot.
He goes on to write that kosher certification agencies label them as "Kosher for Pesach for kitniyot eaters" because "people are stringent".

I disagree and believe that this is really due to the Charediz…

The Custom of Tefillin

The custom of Tefillin is very ancient, even predating the custom of kitniyot. In the USA, tefillin are commonly worn during Chol HaMoed. When making aliyah, most olim from the USA adopt the the "Minhag HaMakom", a.k.a. the local custom, and stop wearing them during Chol HaMoed.

What makes this so interesting is that: Most olim continue to abstain from eating kitniyot during Pesach under pretense of following "Minhag Avoteinu", commonly understood as the custom of their parents, rather than the local custom. Most olim adopt what they believe to be the local custom despite the fact that their Fathers wore tefillin during Chol HaMoed. And this is the really interesting part--wearing tefillin is not actually a Minhag (custom), but a Mitzvah D'Oreitah, a commandment dictated by HaShem in the Torah.  Ironically, the first source in the Torah that commands us to wear tefillin has a Pesach theme: And it shall be for a sign for you upon your hand, and for a memorial bet…

Mishnah Brurah on Rice

Section 453: Laws Concerning the Wheat and Concerning the Grinding of Wheat for Matzos Even if a person kneads rice flour and the like with steaming hot water and covers it with cloths until it expands like leavened dough, this does not mean that the rice dough has become leavened, but that it has decayed, and it is therefore permitted to be eaten on Pesach.