Sharp Foods

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Impact of Sharp Foods

  1. If one cuts a sharp food such as a radish with a meat knife that radish is considered meat and may not be eaten together with dairy.[1]

Examples of Sharp Foods

  1. Examples of sharp foods include: onion[2], garlic[3], horse radish[4], radishes[5], asafoetida[6], leeks[7], lemons, Etrogim[8], salty fish such as herrig.[9]
  2. Some liquids are considered a sharp food including: vinegar, lemon juice, distilled spirit (Arak), and borsht.[10]
  3. Spices are considered a sharp food including: pepper, ginger, and salt.[11]
  4. Some say that radishes with a white peel aren't a dvar charif and would be lenient for a great loss but others argue.[12]
  5. Cucumbers, cabbage, apples, pears, and plums aren't sharp foods.[13]
  6. Many say that beets aren't a sharp food.[14]
  7. Foods which aren't explicitly enumerated as a sharp or non-sharp food some poskim say depend on whether they are edible on their own. If they aren't edible because of their sharpness such as a raw onion they are sharp foods and if they are edible but are sharp should initially be treated as a sharp food but after the fact in a case of loss one can be lenient.[15]
  8. Onions that are cooked aren't considered sharp after they are cooked if they are later cut or used in another pot.[16]

Nat Bar Nat

  1. Even though the knife was clean that was used to cut the sharp food or the pot that was used to cook the sharp food was clean the sharp food still takes on the status of the knife or pot (nat bar nat).[17]
  2. If the sharp food is cut with a meat knife or cooked in a meat pot and then it is cooked with another food, if that second food is mixed with milk there is a dispute if the second food with milk is permitted (nat bar nat bar nat).[18] For a case of need it is permitted.[19]
  3. If an onion was cut with a meat knife and put into a parve soup cooked in a dairy pot that wasn't used within 24 hours for dairy the pot is permitted and the food shouldn't be eaten with dairy.[20]


  1. If someone cut a sharp food with a meat knife and then tasted it, if it didn't have any meat taste, and then one mistakenly cooked that sharp food with a dairy food one can be lenient after the fact.[21]

Efsher Lsachto

  1. If a sharp food was cut with a meat knife and then was cooked in a dairy food that food is forbidden unless there is sixty times the knife that was used to cut the sharp food. In that case the sharp food itself is permitted.[22]
  2. If a sharp food was cut with a meat knife and then was left soaking in milk, the milk is forbidden unless the milk is sixty times the knife. In that case the sharp food is forbidden and must be removed before having the milk.[23]

Cutting Boards

  1. There is a dispute whether the cutting action that transfers taste to a sharp food includes only the knife or even the cutting board or plate underneath.[24]
  2. Initially one should cut a sharp food with a parve knife on a parve cutting board, or with a meat knife on a meat cutting board, or milk knife and milk cutting board. If someone cut a sharp food with a meat knife on a milk cutting board some say that the food, the knife, and the cutting board are non-kosher but most poskim are lenient after the fact.[25]
  3. After the fact if someone used a parve knife to cut a sharp food on a meat cutting board initially one should only eat that sharp food with meat, however, the knife can still be treated as parve. Similarly, if someone cut with a meat knife on a parve cutting board one should initially eat that sharp food only with meat but the cutting board can still be treated as parve.[26]
  4. If someone cut a very spicy meat that is considered a sharp food on a milk cutting board there is more reason to be concerned and one should ask a Rabbi.[27]

Ein Ben Yomo

  1. There is a dispute if one cuts a sharp food with an eino ben yomo meat knife if the sharp food is considered meat. The halacha is to be strict.[28]


  1. Gemara Chullin 111b, Shulchan Aruch YD 96:1
  2. "Betzel" Shulchan Aruch 96:2, Laws of Kashrut p. 323
  3. "Shum", Shulchan Aruch 96:2, Laws of Kashrut p. 323
  4. Dvar Charif p. 25
  5. "Tzanon". Aruch Hashulchan 96:13, Badei Hashulchan 96:2
  6. Translation of Chiltit (Google Translate April 7 2019)
  7. "Karti", "Kerishin", Shulchan Aruch 96:2, Dvar Charif p. 27, Laws of Kashrut p. 323
  8. Dvar Charif p. 27
  9. Dvar Charif p. 28
  10. Dvar Charif p. 29
  11. Dvar Charif p. 31
  12. The Aruch Hashulchan 96:13 writes that he heard a gadol say that radishes with a black peel is a dvar charif but not one with a white peel. He concludes that one could rely on this for a great loss. Dvar Charif p. 26 cites the Darkei Teshuva 96:1 who disagrees. Badei Hashulchan 96:2 cites both opinions.
  13. Aruch Hashulchan 96:13
  14. Pri Megadim S"D 96:1 notes that he isn't sure what tradin is. Horah Brurah 96 fnt. 6 writes that tradin and silka isn't beets. He cites the Tiferet Yosef YD 1, and Rav Yosef Kapach (Simchei Hamishna "Tradin"). Instead he defines taradin as Swiss chard. Horah Brurah concludes that beets isn't a dvar charif. (Often tradin is defined as beets e.g. Jastrow p. 997 "Silka"). Aruch Hashulchan 96:13 writes that beets aren't sharp. Badei Hashulchan 96 fnt. 8 cites the Makom Shmuel 90 who says that tradin aren't beets.
  15. Dvar Charif p. 30 citing Maharsham in Daat Torah and others
  16. Dvar Charif p. 38 citing Pitchei Teshuva 96:4
  17. Shulchan Aruch Y.D. 96:1
  18. Badei Hashulchan 96:5 quotes that the Pri Megadim is strict since we treat nat bar nat of a dvar charif like one nat so too with three nat's. However, Rabbi Akiva Eiger argues.
  19. Badei Hashulchan 96:5
  20. Dvar Charif p. 179 is lenient since it is nat bar nat of hetera in the pot since it is eino ben yomo. Even for the minhag of the Rama 94:5 it isn't necessary to be strict since we can include the opinion that onions aren't charif.
  21. Shulchan Aruch 96:1 allows tasting the food even initially, however, the Shach 96:5 argues that it is only permitted after the fact. Badei Hashulchan 96:15 agrees. In the biurim he quotes the Rabbi Akiva Eiger who says that one needs to taste the entire area that is within a fingerbreadth of the cut but is lenient for the Pri Megadim who holds that one could taste any area near the cut if there's another reason to be lenient.
  22. Shach 94:23, Taz 96:5, Magen Avraham 447:38, Pri Megadim E"A 96:8 citing Maharam Lublin 28
  23. Pri Megadim E"A 96:8 explains that soaking food doesn't spread the taste evenly.
  24. Badei Hashulchan 96:7. He concludes to be strict. Sefer Dvar Charif p. 12 discusses this and quotes Rav Elyashiv as holding that initially one should avoid the situation but after the fact there's no issue.
  25. Dvar Charif p. 13
  26. Dvar Charif p. 14
  27. Dvar Charif p. 15
  28. Shulchan Aruch YD 96:1 cites the rishonim who are lenient as long as the knife was eino ben yomo and then quotes the Sefer Hatrumah as some say to be strict.