18 Aug Kashruth Questions of the Week
What bracha do you make on licorice?
She’Hakol. It was never mezonos. Those that learned mesechtas brachos learned that any food that has one of the 5 grains is mezonos. Licorice as you are aware has flour. But the gemara also says if it’s not the main ingredient that gives the taste or texture to the food, you make a She’Hakol.
What bracha does one make on rice?
Mezonos. The bracha achronal is borei nefashos, not al hamichya.
Why does the OU not certify the kashrus of American cheese? We do certify American Cheese. The halacha is, for any hard cheese to be considered kosher, a rabbi has to be there at the production of the cheese which makes it complicated and expensive, but we certify plenty of American cheese. Some of it is cholov Yisroel, and some is not.
Hard Cheese & Waiting Six Hours
For hard cheese you need to wait six hours. There was a pizza store in the neighborhood that was using hard cheese and they were not putting a sign to let people know and they were blaming the OU or whatever hashgacha it was that the hashgacha should put up a sign that it’s hard cheese and people should wait six hours. They are 100% right! I recall that 2-3 years ago I was at a Bris on shvuos in our neighborhood and they served a dairy kiddush after the Bris, and one of the salads that was being served had parmesan cheese in it. A lot of people, such as myself, we had a dairy kiddush but after the kiddush the meal that we eat, is meat. But parmesan cheese is a hard cheese and you have to wait 6 hours. I was upset and I told people there that it would have been appropriate to put up a sign that the salad has parmesan cheese, and if you want to eat it you’re going to have to wait 6 hours to eat meat. So we at the OU try to be careful and have such signage but any store that’s selling it should let their customers know so they shouldn’t make a mistake.
Eggs and Blood Spots
Since eggs are candled, do they still need to be checked for blood spots? Blood spots in fertilized eggs are prohibited, and one should check cracked eggs to make sure they are blood-free. Commercial eggs today are not fertilized and blood spots are not halachically prohibited. Nonetheless, even today, the prevailing minhag (custom) is to discard eggs with blood spots and check cracked eggs before they are cooked. Though raw eggs are candled before they are packaged, the candling process is not foolproof and the OU cannot guarantee that the eggs are 100% free from blood spots. The presence of an OU on a box of eggs does not obviate the need to check the individual eggs for blood spots. OU supervision is limited to the method of processing the raw egg. For example, raw eggs are sprayed with mineral oil to coat the egg shell with sheen and clog the pores to enhance the shelf life of the egg.