2.01.2012

Kosher Kitchen: Round Two

Last time on Kosher Kitchen, we learned the basic rules: the three categories of food, and what can or can't be eaten together. All well and good in theory, but how does a kosher kitchen actually function? In this post, you'll learn all about the day-to-day mechanics of cooking kosher. Disclaimer: As always, I'm speaking from my own experience, so please let me know if you practice differently/have seen things done differently.

Its 6:00 on a Thursday evening. Your stomach is rumbling. What will you make? Under kosher cooking restrictions, food preparation is a little like a choose-your-own adventure novel. You first decide what your protein will be: meat or dairy? Or more accurately for me, how badly do I want to put cheese on whatever I am about to consume? Once the decision is made, it affects the rest of the dish. If I, for example, have a hankering for chicken, I need to cut out butter as a fat in preparation and substitute a non-dairy alternative, usually olive oil.

Since there are waiting times between meat and milk (roughly speaking 6 hours for Polish/Russian Jews, 3 for German, 1 for Dutch, though many families have slightly different customs), if I know I'll be having dairy later in the day-- a coffee date, perhaps-- I'll opt for a dairy meal earlier as well. This leads us to the greatest Jewish fear: F.O.F, or Fear of Fleishiks (meat). I rarely eat meat for lunch, because it would limit my options later in the day. And I will almost always value a potential ice cream break later in the day than a deli sandwich now. There is a short waiting period after milk (15 minutes or washing out the mouth), so either milk or pareve are good options when you don't know what denomination your next meal will be.
{via}
Now that you've selected either meat, dairy or pareve, time to find the correct cooking implements. In my kitchen, I have full sets of dairy and meat pots and pans. And you thought you had a problem with storage space! Some people will also have a full set of pareve, or simply a few select pieces, so they can prepare food that can be eaten with either dairy or meat (for example, cooking up a large pot of quinoa that can then be used under roasted chicken OR in a feta salad).Most people will choose distinctly different-looking pieces to prevent accidental mixing. My dairy pots and pans are anodized aluminum, while my meat set is stainless steel.

Along with the pots and pans come silverware, dishes, and cooking utensils, which are similarly doubled. To sum that up, in my kitchen there are 2 sets of pots/pans, silverware, utensils, and 3 sets of dishes (dairy, everyday meat and formal china, which are meat as well). Luckily, glass is considered nonporous and glasses can thus be used with either denomination. I think the ancient rabbis simply ran out of space and came up with that rule.

And finally, when your meal is done, time to wash those dishes. With separate sponges, of course. Since I only have one sink that gets both milk and meat particles, I place different sink ranks inside for meat and dairy inside when dishes of either denomination are soaking or being washed.

Up on tap: Uh oh, I screwewd up: What to do when you dropped the meat spoon into a pot of milk; shopping for kosher groceries, how and where to eat out, and whatever else you're interested in learning about. Let me know!

4 comments:

Christy Sews said...

I just want to say thank you for sharing. I love your blog. I especially love learning about your religious practices. I've always wanted to learn about a kosher kitchen but none of my friends practice their faith. So again, thank you

Christy Sews said...

I just want to say thank you for sharing. I love your blog. I especially love learning about your religious practices. I've always wanted to learn about a kosher kitchen but none of my friends practice their faith. So again, thank you

Christy Sews said...

I just want to say thank you for sharing. I love your blog. I especially love learning about your religious practices. I've always wanted to learn about a kosher kitchen but none of my friends practice their faith. So again, thank you

Polly R said...

WOW. That is fucked

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...