Fish with Meat: Keeping the Cows from the Carps

March 3, 2009, by

A kosher cheeseburger is an oxymoron! A lesser-known kosher regulation is the separation of meat and fish. Join Rabbi David Bistricer, OU Kosher rabbinic coordinator, as he expertly and thoroughly explores this almost hidden facet of Torah life. Topics include: the use of ovens for meat and fish; eating fish and meat in the same meal; additives containing anchovies and omega-3 fatty acids. “Scale” the heights of Jewish knowledge as you “meat” this topic head-on!

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The Partridge Family: Only Partly Kosher?

December 4, 2008, by

Sherlock Holmes meets the Shulchan Aruch! Join Rabbi Chaim Loike, a Rabbinic Coordinator with OU Kashruth with special expertise in birds, as he describes the OU’s investigation into the kashrus of the partridge. Do partridges appear in the Bible? Is partaking of a partridge part of our patrimony? What precisely is the OU’s position? You’ll get the answers to these and other questions in this presentation. BONUS: Click here to see pictures!

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YU at the OU: Seminars in Kashrus and Chemistry

November 10, 2008, by

YU at the OU: Seminars in Kashrus and Chemistry: A special VIDEO Tidbit. On 10/31/08, the OU was privileged to host a chemistry class from Yeshiva University (YU). YU has always emphasized the usage of worldly knowledge in service of the Torah’s goals, and this seminar epitomizes that lofty notion. Heat and Cooking in Halacha presented by Rabbi Eli Gersten, Rabbinic Coordinator OU Kashruth, Recorder of OU P’sak and Policy, is a discussion of the definitions and applications of heat in Halacha (e.g., kashering utensils). Extraction and Distillation in Halacha presented by Rabbi Nosson Neuberger, Rabbinic Coordinator OU Kashruth, Asst. Director, Ingredient Approval Registry, is an examination of essential oils and alcoholic beverages. Chemical Changes in Substances presented by Rabbi Gavriel Price, Rabbinic Coordinator OU Kashruth, Ingredient Approval Registry, is an exploration of the halachic definition of “change” and potential leniencies drawn therefrom.

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On a Wing and a Prayer: The Kosher Birds

October 30, 2008, by

In a special presentation recorded on Tzom Gedaliah [10/2/08] at Yeshiva University in New York, Rabbi Chaim Loike elucidates how we confirm the kosher status of a bird. Rabbi Loike is not only a Rabbinic Coordinator with OU Kashruth: he is also an ordained shochet (ritual slaughterer) with vast expertise in this area. This seminar is richly illustrated and truly edifying. It even has an intoductory section about Kaparos. Don’t miss this “egg”-cellent chance to learn! Click here to download the source sheet.

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Curing a Cough: Kosher Concern?

July 21, 2008, by

Does a medicine chest contain hidden kashrus perils? Join Rabbi Eli Gersten, the Rabbinic Coordinator with OU Kashruth charged with recording OU halachic policies, as he explores a range of views on the potential kashrus issues with liquid medicines. Rabbi Gersten discusses such questions as: Does Halacha view medicine as “food”? Is there an halachic difference between adult needs and children’s needs? Is there any need to seek kosher-certified drugs? You’ll see that this topic is nothing to sneeze at! If you have questions or comments for Rabbi Gersten please send them to:

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Disposable Items: Is Kashrus Disposable?

July 14, 2008, by

Ham; shrimp; cheeseburgers: these are some of the “prototypical” non-kosher products. But should we add paper towels to the list? Join Rabbi David Bistricer, a Rabbinic Coordinator with OU Kashruth, as he examines kashrus topics connected to kitchen-disposables such as aluminum foil and Styrofoam cups. You may find that your concerns are disposable…

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Allergens: Nothing to Sneeze At

June 16, 2008, by

Dear OU Rabbi: I see that Uncle Timmy brand Granola Bars are OU-kosher-parve, but the label says, ‘May contain traces of milk, shrimp, and ham.’ What’s the story? Thanks, a Concerned Consumer.” OU Kashruth receives this kind of question all the time. Rabbi David Bistricer, a Rabbinic Coordinator with OU Kashruth, skillfully and thoroughly provides the answer. Listen in, and never worry about allergen disclaimers again.

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Mission Not Impossible: The Kosher Jew in a Non-Kosher Milieu

February 12, 2008, by

There you are: stuck in a hotel where room service is only too happy to provide shrimp and cheeseburgers. There you are: a returnee to Jewish observance, visiting Mom and Dad and wondering how you’ll avoid starving. In this presentation, Rabbi Eliyahu W. Ferrell, a Rabbinic Coordinator with OU Kosher as well as with OU Kosher’s educational programs, offers some points of guidance for kosher navigating in a non-kosher kitchen. How do I kosherize a stove? How do I use a nonkosher microwave? What do I do if the dishes weren’t ritually immersed? Join Rabbi Ferrell and learn some invaluable helpful hints. If you have questions or comments for Rabbi Ferrell please send them to:

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The Sabbatical Year: A Discussion for the Diaspora

February 7, 2008, by

5768 is a Shemittah (Sabbatical) year in the Land of Israel…could that affect Diaspora Jews? Indeed, yes! Tune in to a thorough presentation of Shemittah issues by Rabbi Moshe Elefant, Executive Rabbinic Coordinator and COO of OU Kashruth. Are there red-flags for Diaspora Jews? What is the Hetter Mechira? What does ownership of the land have to do with Shemittah? What do we do if we end up with fruit that bears the sanctity of Shemittah? Is growing botanicals in a hot house sufficient to obviate Shemittah concerns? Rabbi Elefant elucidates these issues with the clarity that has made his OU Daf Yomi so popular. If you have questions or comments for Rabbi Elefant please send them to:

This seminar was recorded live on February 2, 2008, at Congregation Talmud Torah of Flatbush in New York City. It was sponsored by Keren Hashviis.

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Living and Breathing…and Even Eating Kosher

January 19, 2008, by

Is ‘kosher” more than a kind of food? Yes, says Rabbi Yisroel Bendelstein, a Rabbinic Coordinator with OU Kashruth. In this presentation, Rabbi Bendelstein does more than talk about elements of kosher certification. He does more than talk about eating in a kosher way. He also talks about living in a kosher way. A special treat you won’t want to miss.

This seminar was recorded live at the Beth Israel Synagogue in Edmonton, Canada, on December 25, 2007, as part of the “Yeshiva for a Day” program, sponsored with Edmonton Jewish General Education.

Click here to read a review article (with pictures) about the OU’s presentations in Edmonton.

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