OU Kosher Releases Two New DVDs on the Kashrut of Meat and Birds

05 Aug 2008

Kosher Meat: Unexplored Frontiers with Rabbi Yisroel Belsky

You want to really understand meat preparation — the Torah way. What is it that goes into making a kosher steak or lamb chop? But you don’t know who can teach you. You’d probably need a team of three: A rabbi with mastery of the relevant laws; a scientist with a breadth of anatomical knowledge; and a veteran shochet (ritual slaughterer) who can share his expertise.

Guess again! In Kosher Meat: Unexplored Frontiers with Rabbi Yisroel Belsky, a one-of-a-kind video presentation, Rabbi Belsky, the world-renowned scholar who serves as Rosh Yeshiva of Yeshiva Torah Vodaath in New York and as a Senior Halachic Consultant for OU Kashrut, explores the lesser-known — and lesser-seen — aspects of meat preparation. A master halachist, anatomist, and shochet, Rabbi Belsky addresses such questions as: How is a kosher animal identified? What does it mean to “chew the cud”? How does a shochet prepare for shechitah? What do the Matnos Kehuna (the portions given to the Kohen) look like? What’s checked after shechitah? Join him and understand meat preparation like you never imagined you could.

Kosher Birds: Who Are They? (You’ll Have a Ball with these Fowls!) with Rabbi Chaim Loike

Kosher fish have fins and scales. Kosher mammals have cloven hooves and ruminate. And kosher birds have…what exactly? In “Kosher Birds: Who Are They?” a unique video seminar, Rabbi Chaim Loike, an OU Kosher rabbinic coordinator possessing special expertise in birds, explains how we determine that a bird is kosher. Using live birds — squawks and all! — Rabbi Loike addresses such questions as: What are the physical traits of kosher birds? How does Judaism define a predatory bird? What role does communal tradition play here? Let Rabbi Loike be your guide, and understand kashrut in a whole new way.

Kosher Meat and Kosher Birds comprise the two most recent examples of OU Kosher’s expanded educational outreach. These educational programs include the nationally-renowned and ever-popular “OU Kosher Coming” initiative, which sends OU’s expert rabbis to schools, synagogues and college campuses to share their knowledge of halacha and technology; the ever-growing Kosher Tidbits series of short seminars on innumerable aspects of kashrut and certification, available at ouradio.org. , as well as the popular OU Kosher Webcasts – the most recent one held on May 29th featuring OU Senior Halachic Consultants Rabbis Yisroel Belsky and Rabbi Hershel Schachter in a question and answer webcast session about the Kosher Kitchen. Thousands of listeners tuned in to that most informative presentation.

The Kosher Kidz and Kosher Fish Primer videos have already achieved great popularity. “There has been an astounding response to these presentations,” declared Rabbi Eliyahu Safran, Senior Rabbinic Coordinator and Vice President of Marketing and Communications at OU Kosher. “We have received requests from day schools, summer camps, yeshivas, kollelim, federations, Jewish community centers, synagogues, youth groups, college campus groups, and classroom teachers — from all denominations from throughout the country and worldwide, including Israel, England, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Mexico. We are obviously meeting a very real need for teachers and schools everywhere throughout the Jewish educational network. Some days as many as 50 requests arrive. The appreciation expressed is overwhelming.”

For further information on bringing OU Kosher to your school or community, or to receive the DVD’s, contact Rabbi Eliyahu Safran at safrane@ou.org. There is no charge for the DVDs other than $10 for postage.