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[Heb.,=proper, i.e., fit for use], in Judaism, term used in rabbinic literature to mean what is ritually correct, but most widely applied to food that is in accordance with dietary laws based on Old Testament passages (primarily Lev. 11 and Deut. 14). Kosher meat is the flesh of animals that both chew the cud and have cloven hoofs (as the cow and sheep); the animal must have been slaughtered with a skillful stroke by a specially trained Jew; the meat must be carefully inspected, and, unless cooked by broiling, it must be salted and soaked to remove all traces of blood. Kosher fishes are those that have scales and fins. The rules that apply to the slaughter and preparation of animals are the same as those for the slaughter of fowl. The cooking and eating of milk products with, or immediately after, meats or meat products is unkosher; even the use of the same kitchen and table utensils and towels is forbidden. The cleansing of newly acquired utensils and the preparation of articles for Passover use are also called koshering. The antithesis of kosher is tref [Heb.,=animal torn by wild beasts]. Reform Judaism does not require observance of the kosher laws.
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(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

Jewish kosher foods are those that have been prepared under the supervision of Orthodox rabbis who have studied the dietary requirements of the Hebrew scriptures and will guarantee that the rules have been followed.

When matzah (bread made without leaven) is prepared, for example, the rule is ancient and simple: flour and water must be mixed together and put in the oven within seventeen minutes. Any longer than that and the bread has a chance to rise, at which point it is no longer unleavened bread. Every place in the kitchen that might possibly contain yeast residue is examined. Ovens and all utensils are thoroughly cleaned to remove any possible trace of leaven. Timers keep careful watch on the clock. Every Jew in the world knows that on Passover her bread is really unleavened if it is stamped with the kosher seal.

From wine to pickles, every food has its traditional rules. Animals have to be slaughtered in a certain ritualistic way. Some foods cannot be mixed.

Only flesh of animals that have a "cloven foot and chew the cud" are ritually pure. (Cattle and deer—yes. Pigs—no.) Water animals must have both fins and scales. (Fish—okay. Lobster—forbidden.) Birds of prey are out, as are reptiles. Blood from any animal is not kosher, and meat must be drained and salted before cooking. Meat and milk (and foods derived from each) must never be mixed. In other words, cheese on a hamburger is not kosher, nor is any kind of meat on a pizza. Foods such as fruits and vegetables occupy a neutral ground and are considered pareve.

The Religion Book: Places, Prophets, Saints, and Seers © 2004 Visible Ink Press®. All rights reserved.


Judaism conforming to religious law; fit for use: esp, (of food) prepared in accordance with the dietary laws
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
Some individuals have serious economic barriers; some live in "kosher food deserts," where there is an extremely limited supply of kosher food and high prices; some have limited mobility and require food delivery, or have some combination of all these challenges.
The word Kosher is an adaptation of the Hebrew word "k?s?r" meaning "fit" or "proper" and it refers to food that conforms to the regulations of kashrut or Jewish dietary law.
CFOUnsweet kosher wines were introduced in the U.S.
The author's family members become characters in the story just as much as the rabbis, scientists, food manufacturers, and others for whom whether or not a specific food is ultimately authorized as kosher has significant ramifications for how they conduct their businesses or their lives.
Kosher and non-kosher wines are made the same way; it is the handling that is a little different.
Working in partnership with the Chicago Rabbinical Council, Mariano's designed a separate 5,275-square-foot section within the store that is kosher certified.
Although the author warns us that "one should be careful, however, not to romanticize the power of religious faith," it can be argued that this offers a great advantage to the kosher industry over others (139).
Empire offers a range of kosher antibiotic- and hormone-free chicken and turkey products including fresh tray pack, frozen, deli, fully cooked, gluten-free and organic products in the United States as well as the Kosher Valley brand sold exclusively in Whole Foods Market.
As long as the other ingredients (the bacteria cultures, acid and salt) are kosher and the cheese is prepared using sterilized equipment, these cheeses are considered kosher (and many carry kosher certification).
Most people think of kosher as avoiding pork products and not mixing meat and dairy, and I follow both traditions.
Historically, kosher wine sales have suffered from a poor reputation.
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