Jewish Stuff: Keeping Kosher

A lot of people, from diverse religions and ethnical backgrounds eat kosher food for different reasons, and others may share an interest in kosher food, but their definitions and intentions of eating kosher may vary. Millions of people eat kosher base on religion, culture, health and some do it because it’s a good way to maintain their diet. Jewish people, Muslims, Hindus, Seventh Day Adventists, lacto-Vegetarians are just some of the people who are very passionate in eating Kosher foods.

What is kosher food? Kosher foods are those that conform to the decree of the Jewish Halakhic (Jewish legal) framework. These rules form the main aspect of kashrut (Jewish dietary laws) originated in the Bible (Torah).  For the food to be considered kosher, the ingredients and the method of preparing it must follow a strict ground rule which includes not eating meat from the hare, hyrax, camel, pigs, eagle, owl, catfish, sturgeon, lobster, clams, or shrimp and any shellfish, insect or reptile. It is non-kosher and is considered unclean.

The proviso for a food to be considered kosher means the presence and supervision of a rabbi in the production and processing of food which includes then mixing of ingredients, to make sure that kosher rabbinic laws are followed. Livestock must be slaughtered in an ethical manner wherein animals are killed humanely and if possible, not in pain.Only those who are qualified and trained in slaughtering kosher animals are allowed.

Meat and milk products may not be mixed or consumed together, nor should fish be served with meat. A kosher food that is processed or cooked together with a non-kosher food or with the presence of any ingredients acquired from non-kosher animals is not allowed and will be considered non-kosher.  The cooking utensils like pots, pans, dishes, and any machinery used for processing or cooking kosher food, should not be used in the same manner for non-kosher food to make sure that no non-kosher ingredient may be serve on the same plate as the kosher food.

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