Friday, July 17, 2009

Next Dor: Solving the Kashrut Issue

In a recent post, we talked about some of the issues that arose in trying to make the Next Dor house truly non-denomenational and welcoming for to everyone. Kashrut came out as the item that was most contested. After a conversation earlier in the week, we believe we have found a good compromise.

It is interesting, although not totally surprising that Kashrut, the Jewish dietary laws, came to be a contentious issue. After all, there are a great many different understandings of the laws of Kashrut that trace back directly to the Torah all the way to more modern understandings and cultural interpretations.

While we could use this space for a discussion on intentions of the laws of Kashrut, interpretations over the years, and controversies, I'd rather focus on practical outcomes.

First, no pork or shellfish will be allowed in the house. That includes pepperoni, sausage, bacon, ham, and swine flu.

Second, we will have two sets of kosher cook-, dish-, and silverware; one for milk and one for meat. We will also have one set of non-kosher kitchenware. We will also have plenty of biodegradable disposable plates for certain situations.

In terms of keeping the kitchen itself kosher enough to not treyf up the kosher kitchenware, we will have buckets which can be placed in the sink in which to wash the kosher dishes. The oven's self-clean mode also doubles as a self-kashering mode that will enable us to make the change between milk, meat, and non-kosher foods.

So long as the cookware we use is glass or cast iron, if someone makes a mistake, we'll be able to get things back on track pretty easily.

Will it be difficult to keep everyone on the same page? Sure, and we might run into several different people in the kitchen doing different things at the same time. To help keeps things straight, whenever kosher cooking is going on, there will have to be someone involved who has a deeper knowledge of the laws of Kashrut to make sure things are being done correctly.

If we can stick to this plan, then it means that those of us who do or don't keep kosher, and to all of the varying degrees, will hopefully be able to eat and enjoy together.


Anonymous said...

At least confirm that you aren't allowign the Vad Hoeir in St. Louis to supervise the kitchen.

Y? said...

The Va'ad will not be involved in the house.