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Kosher inDepth

TheHebrew indigenous "kosher" literally way "acceptable." Foodsthat are allowed by the Torah and prepared acyellowcomic.comding come Jewish legislation arekosher. Below are some of the basic principles that consist of the kosher dietarylaws.

KOSHER SPECIES

1. Animals

TheTorah (Leviticus 11:3) list the characteristics of permitted pets as thosewith totally split hooves, who additionally chew your cud (ruminants). Kosher animalsare always mammals and herbivores. The kosher animals commonly consumed today arethe cow, goat and sheep -- and sometimes deer and buffalo.

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2. Birds

TheTorah enumerates 24 forbidden varieties of birds, and also the Talmud explains that,among other signs, all birds of prey (vulture, hawk, eagle) room forbidden. Inpractice today, us eat only those birds for which over there is one establishedtradition that the bird is kosher -- e.g. Chicken, turkey, duck and goose.

Asfor "kosher eggs," they must come native a species of kosher bird (e.g.chicken).

3. Fish

TheTorah (Leviticus 11:9) teaches that a kosher fish have to possess both fins andscales. (Fins help the fish swim, and scales room a covering over the body.)Even if the fish has actually only one range or one fin, that is permitted. Tuna, forexample, have actually very few scales, yet is kosher. Other renowned kosher fish arebass, carp, cod, flounder, halibut, herring, mackerel, trout and also salmon.

Crustaceans(such as lobster and crab) and also other shellfish (such together clams) are not kosher,because they absence scales. Further, every aquatic mammals (e.g. Whales anddolphins) are not kosher.

Andyes, there are kosher ranges of sushi and also caviar -- providing it"s indigenous akosher species (fins and scales), and that it was prepared just with kosherutensils (knife, cut board, etc.).

4. Insects

Manyare surprised to uncover that four types of grasshoppers are kosher(Leviticus 11:22). However, all various other insects are not kosher. One can thinkthat this has little practical applications to our contemporary eating habits. But intruth, many leafy vegetables (lettuce, broccoli) often contain insects and also mustbe very closely examined prior to they have the right to be eaten. Some fruits favor raspberriesand strawberries are additionally problematic. Rabbis have developed particular methodsto properly examine these fruits and also vegetables for insects.

KOSHER SLAUGHTERING

1. Shechita

Besidesbeing from a kosher species, kosher meat needs that the animal/bird beslaughtered in the path prescribed by the Torah (Shechita). (Fish donot have actually this requirement.) In this procedure, a trained kosher slaughterer (shochet)severs the trachea and also esophagus of the pet with a unique razor-sharpknife. This also severs the jugular vein, causing near-instantaneous fatality withminimal pain come the animal.

2. Bedika

Afterthe animal/bird has been properly slaughtered, its interior organs space inspectedfor any type of physiological abnormalities that might render the pet non-kosher (treif).The lungs, in particular, should be check to recognize that there space noadhesions (sirchot) which might be indicative that a puncture in the lungs.

3. Nikkur

Animalscontain numerous veins (e.g. Gid HaNashe) and fats (chelev) that areforbidden through the Torah and must be removed. The procedure of removed is called"Nikkur," and also it is rather complex. In exercise today, the hindquarter of most kosher pets is merely removed and sold together non-kosher meat.

4. Salting

TheTorah forbids eating of the blood that an animal or bird (Leviticus 7:26); fishdo not have this requirement. For this reason in order come extract the blood, the entiresurface of meat must be spanned with coarse salt. That is climate left because that an houron an lean or perforated surface to enable the blood to circulation down freely.The meat is then thoroughly washed to remove all salt. Meat have to be kosheredwithin 72 hours after slaughter so as no to allow the blood come congeal. (Analternate method of removing the blood is through broiling ~ above a perforated grateover an open fire.)

ADDITIONAL PROHIBITIONS

1. Meat and also Milk

TheTorah forbids eating meat and also milk in combination, and also even forbids the action ofcooking them together (as well as deriving benefit from together a mixture). Together asafeguard, the Sages disallow the eating of meat and dairy products at the samemeal, or prepare them with the same utensils. Therefore, a kosher kitchenmust have two different sets that pots, pans, plates and silverware -- one formeat/poultry and also the other for dairy foods.

Onemust wait as much as six hrs after eating meat products prior to eating dairyproducts. However, meat may be eaten following dairy commodities (with theexception of hard cheese, which additionally requires a six-hour interval). Front toeating meat after dairy, one should eat a heavy food and also the mouth should berinsed.

2. Chalav Yisrael

ARabbinic regulation requires the there it is in supervision throughout the milking process toensure the the milk comes from a kosher animal. In phibìc America, numerous peoplerely ~ above the department of Agriculture"s regulations and also controls assufficiently stringent to meet the rabbinic necessity for supervision. Some,however, do not rely on this, and also will just eat dairy products that are designatedas Chalav Yisrael (literally, "Jewish milk").

3. Bishul Akum

Bishul Akum is a Hebrew ax meaning, "cookedby a non-Jew." together a rabbinic safeguard against assimilation, specific foodscooked by a non-Jew are considered not kosher. If the details that this laware many, the basic rule is that any kind of cooked food which: 1) might not have beeneaten raw, and also 2) is important sufficient to be offered at a fancy meal table, maynot be consumed if cooked by a non-Jew.

Ifa Jew assists v lighting the fire or the cooking, the food may be consumed evenif it was cooked by a non-Jew (assuming, that course, that the food itself waskosher in every various other way).

KOSHER PRODUCE

1. Grains

Inkeeping kosher, over there is a grain-related problem called Chadash and Yashan-- precise "new" and "old." The Torah (Leviticus 23:14)says that if a serial (such as wheat) to be harvested prior to Passover,then we may not eat that grain till after (the second day of) Passover.

Thismeans that we have actually two type of grain: grain that hasn"t commemorated its firstPassover is (temporarily) forbidden together Chadash, if grain the hasbeen around long enough to currently have a Passover under the belt is Yashan,and allowed to eat.

Anothergrain-related concern is Challah. (This is not to be perplexed with the braidedbread that us eat on Shabbat.) as soon as one kneads a far-ranging amount of dough(over 2.5 pounds) because that baking purposes, a small portion of the dough is removedand burned. (In the times of the divine Temple, this part was given to aKohen.) when challah has been separated native the bigger dough, the dough is"kosher" because that baking into bread or other items.

2. Fruits

Fruitthat grows during the an initial three year after a tree is planted is dubbed Orlahand is no kosher to be eaten. This law uses to trees both in Israel and theDiaspora. If you plant a fruit tree in your backyard, you cannot eat the fruitfor three years, and also there is a one-of-a-kind procedure come render the fruitpermissible come eat in the fourth year. (Consult with a rabbi.)

3. Israeli Produce

Trumah and Maaser room terms forvarious tithes that apply to Israeli-grown produce, come be given to the Kohenand Levi. Untithed foodstuffs are referred to as Tevel and also are no kosher to beeaten. If you"re visiting Israel, or even if you"re to buy Israeli oranges ortomatoes in your neighborhood supermarket, you have to make certain that proper titheshave been taken from all grains, fruits and vegetables.

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TheTorah (Leviticus ch. 25) states that every seven years, agricultural work mustcease in the soil of Israel. This is dubbed Shmita -- the seventh,sabbatical year. Develop that grow on land the was "farmed andworked" throughout the seventh year is not kosher. Today, with the return that aJewish agricultural industry to Israel, the legislations related to Shmita areonce again very relevant. Therefore if you"re buying Israeli produce, make sure thelaws the Shmita were correctly observed.