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Bishul Akum

Question: On Friday night a few minutes after shkiyah, the electricity went out in our house [there was an excess of appliances because of a family simcha]. We were told that during Bein Hashmashos it is permissible to ask a non-jew to turn on the electricity [we asked the maid]. The cholent however was totally raw at that point  and had to be turned on separately. Was the cholent forbidden to eat because o ...

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Foie Gras: Production and Consumption

Question: Does Maran Shlita permit the production and/or consumption of foie gras in the way in which it is produced currently- by placing a specially designed funnel down the duck's throat and pouring in soft (already boiled) corn? Answer: Something being done to an animal for the purpose of food preparation is permitted according to the letter of the law. Nevertheless, the Rama at the end of Even Haezer S ...

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Vegetarianism in Halacha

Question: Is there a halachic question to be a vegetarian and avoid meat entirely? Answer: It is permitted to be a vegetarian, though this is not the "accepted way" of previous generations. Although some authorities rule that one must consume meat on festivals (YomTov), there is no point in eating meat for somebody for whom the consumption of meat is a cause for suffering rather than for joy. Rather, a vege ...

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Taste the meat foods on erev Shabbos Chazon

Question: I work as a chef in a summer camp, and need to prepare the food for shabbos chazon. May I taste the meat foods on erev shabbos? Answer: Food may be tasted to ensure quality and taste. The food being tasted does not have to be spit out. מקורות:    מנהג בני אשכנז לא לאכול בשר ולשתות יין כל תשעת הימים מר"ח אב, כמבואר בש"ע ופוסקים סי' תקנ"א סעי ט'. ולטעום המאכל בערב שבת עי' אור לציון ח"ג סי' כו' אות ד ...

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Co-ed trips

Question: Sholom, I run coed Birthright trips to Israel each year for secular students. A portion from each trip eventually go on to yeshiva. However, during the trips students inevitably engage in inappropriate relationships with each other. I have no doubt that these trips are one of the most successful ways to get students into learning, however, I'm not sure how it can be mutur to lead students on mixed ...

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Serving food on a fast day

Question: I am leading a kiruv trip of secular students over the next few weeks. We are responsible to provide them every day with food or money to buy food. What should be done on Shivah Asar B’Tamuz, may we feed them as on a normal day [provide actual food]. If not, could we give  them money specifically to buy food [on their own]? Answer: They could be given money to buy food on the fast day. If this is ...

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