Soul Nutrition – Pesach 5781

We don’t find any other Yom Tov which has a special name denoting the last day – there’s no Acharon shel Sukkos or Acharon shel Shavuos.
1 min read. Read More

Rabbi Chaim Fogelman

Remembering Rabbi Leizer Teitelbaum, OB”M

By Rabbi Hershel Krinsky, OK Senior Rabbinic CoordinatorWhen I came to learn in the Central Lubavitch Yeshiva at 770 Eastern Parkway in the summer of 5729 (1969), Reb Leizer had already been there a few years (he was a few ...
1 min read. Read More

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The History of Mechiras Chometz

The sale of chometz before Pesach is a common occurrence, practiced by Jews all over the world, but it didn’t start that way.
4 min read. Read More

Rabbi Kalman Weinfeld

Pesach Oils

Like oil, the Jewish people have undergone crushing challenges that brought out inner greatness. Like oil, the Jewish people have spread out across the world and disseminated the wellsprings of the Torah wherever we have gone.
5 min read. Read More

Rabbi Yitzchak Hanoka

Remembering Mrs. Thelma Levy

Those of us who work at OK Kosher feel that we are part of the OK Family. The matriarch of this family was Mrs. Thelma Levy, A”H.
2 min read. Read More

Estee Butman

Kosher Medicine Lists

Remembering Rabbi Don Yoel Levy, OB"M. This article was originally published in Kosher Spirit for Passover 5778-2018.
5 min read. Read More

Rabbi Don Yoel Levy OB"M

What I Learned From Rabbi Levy, OB”M

Remembering Rabbi Levy on his Yahrzeit, 22 Nissan
3 min read. Read More

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Mono- and Diglycerides

Mono- and diglycerides (of fatty acids) are the most common emulsifiers used in food manufacturing.
2 min read. Read More

Rabbi Sholom Ber Hendel

Meet the OK Executive Kashrus Vaad

The Executive Kashrus Vaad (Rabbinical Council) has been in the role of maintaining and further developing the kashrus standards of the OK for the past year.
8 min read. Read More

Rabbi Eli Lando

From the Desk of Rabbi Shlomo Weinfeld – Pesach 5781

When OK Kosher certifies shemurah matzah productions, we are meticulous about the process from the moment of harvesting.
3 min read. Read More

Rabbi Shlomo Weinfeld

Shiloh – The Art of Wine

The relationship between Shiloh Winery and OK Kosher is a natural one. Shiloh’s wines are at the very top of their field, consistently winning international gold medals.
2 min read. Read More

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Letter From the Editor – Pesach 5781

Hand in hand with hundreds of rabbinical coordinators and rabbinical field representatives, and with immense siyata d’shmaya and a shared goal of unwavering kashrus standards, the Executive Kashrus Vaad is leading the OK ahead to a very bright future.
1 min read. Read More

Rabbi Chaim Fogelman

Soul Nutrition – Chanukah 5781

“What tzaddikim accomplish on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, a simple Yid can accomplish on Zos Chanukah.”
1 min read. Read More

Rabbi Chaim Fogelman

Chassidic Insights – What is Chanukah?

On a basic level, the message of Chanukah — that spiritual light can overpower military might — teaches us the supremacy of soul over body. Although we are a composite of body and soul and although the soul needs the medium of the body in order to express itself, the supremacy of the soul is not limited; the soul invigorates the body, and controls its functioning.
3 min read. Read More

Rabbi Moshe Bogomilsky

Canned Vegetables

Canned vegetables are vegetables that are processed, sealed, cooked, and stored in cans. This is a low-cost method to extend the shelf life of the vegetable. It also provides consumers with a convenient and cheap way to enjoy vegetables, no matter the season.
2 min read. Read More

Rabbi Sholom Ber Hendel

OK Around the World – Spotlight on India

OK Kosher makes many visits by qualified, trained mashgichim regularly throughout the year to supplier sites across the country. This is to verify the kosher status of their products for our certified clients to be able to buy approved and supervised ingredients from them. Bulk liquid shipment, often referred to as ISO tank shipment, of vegetable oils is also quite common in this industry. This is a central piece of any kosher certification of oleochemicals, as the status of the tankers ultimately affects the kashrus of the end product.
4 min read. Read More

Dina Fraenkel

Gevinas Yisroel

Kosher cheese requires kosher milk (either Cholov Yisroel or Cholov Stam), kosher rennet (from a shechted kosher animal or microbial), kosher equipment, AND the participation of a Shomer Shabbos Jew. Only with all of these conditions can the cheese be Gevinas Yisroel and kosher.
5 min read. Read More

Rabbi Hershel Krinsky

Small Batch Sufganiya Babka

The key to delicious babka is layering your fillings. Start with a wet base (see below), followed by a crunch/texture layer (chocolate chips, sprinkles, etc.) and sprinkle with a dry filling.
2 min read. Read More

Naomi Elberg

Remembering Rabbi Don Yoel Levy – Is Butter Kosher?

For a long time, kashrus agencies considered butter a Group One ingredient—a category applying to products that are kosher without supervision. However, ongoing developments in food production have introduced many kashrus concerns, invalidating common assumptions. 
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Rabbi Don Yoel Levy OB"M

Rabbi On the Road – Egypt & United Arab Emirate with Rabbi Ouriel Allouche

A few times a year I travel to Egypt to visit the OK certified facilities spread across the country. There is even a direct flight from Tel Aviv to Cairo, which has been operated by Air Sinai since the Israeli-Egyptian peace agreement (signed in 1979). It’s a short flight – only about an hour! My most recent trip took place in February 2020.
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Rabbi Ouriel Allouche

Healthy Spirit – Citrus Fruits

The winter isn’t generally known as the season for fresh fruits and vegetables, but citrus fruits are at their peak during the winter season.
1 min read. Read More

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Your Kosher Kitchen – Fryers

Many Jews have the custom to eat fried foods on Chanukah to commemorate the miracle of the pure oil found in the Beis HaMikdash. There are many different ways to fry food, but this article will focus on the traditional deep fryer and the new fad on the market, the air fryer.
3 min read. Read More

Rabbi Levi Schapiro

From the Desk of Rabbi Shlomo Weinfeld – Chanukah 5781

As we always approach matters of ruchniyus, the lessons we learn from our history should be taken into our own lives in a practical way. Just as we all strive for spiritual growth as individuals, the OK’s approach to kashrus as an organization aims for the highest standard of supervision. We do this even when the product at hand is permissible according to some, in the spirit of not compromising on the spiritual level of purity.
4 min read. Read More

Rabbi Shlomo Weinfeld

Share Your Spirit – Chanukah 5781

Interacting with Rav Don Yoel, I saw a gentle man; I don’t think I ever heard him raise his voice. But he was also unbending when it came to kashrus. 
2 min read. Read More

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Letter From the Editor – Chanukah 5781

Now, more than ever, it’s comforting to know that some things never change. We are committed to doing the job at hand and ensuring that the kosher consumer can rely on us for products that are kosher without compromise.
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Rabbi Chaim Fogelman

Soul Nutrition – Tishrei 5781

Sukkos is known as Z’man Simchaseinu (the Festival of Joy) because it shows Hashem’s love for the Jewish people. Sitting in the sukkah is akin to getting a hug from Hashem because one is surrounded from all sides by the sukkah.
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Rabbi Chaim Fogelman

Chassidic Insights: At One With the King

There is nothing arbitrary about a name given in the Holy Tongue: the very letters that constitute such a name disclose the intrinsic nature of the entity named. The name of the New Year festival, “Rosh HaShanah,” literally means not “beginning of the year,” but “head of the year.” I.e., the relationship of Rosh HaShanah to the other days of the year parallels the relationship of the head to the other organs of the body.
3 min read. Read More

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Your Kosher Kitchen: Frying Pans

Someone taking a fleishig utensil and using it for milchig, or vice versa – sounds familiar? If you have been quarantined for long enough this is bound to happen. The actual halacha is beyond the scope of this article but this will provide an overview for one to better understand the actual question at hand. Can the frying pan be kashered? Does it make a difference if it’s from treif or from milchig to fleishig? What about from fleishig/milchig to pareve? Can I have my favorite frying pan kashered for Pesach?
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Rabbi Yakov Teichman

Who’s Behind the OK: Interview With Reb Eli Methal

R’ Eli is someone who takes the ma’amarei chazal of עשה תורתך קבע. אמור מעט ועשה הרבה. והוי מקבל את כל האדם בסבר פנים יפות ...as a mission statement to live by. His dedication to getting things done and in the most pleasant manner possible is remarkable and a great example for others.
2 min read. Read More

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What is Bitul?

OK Kosher only certifies products that are kosher without relying on nullification. This means that 100% of the ingredients must be approved as kosher in order for the finished product to be OK certified.
4 min read. Read More

Rabbi Sholom Ber Hendel

Reflections from Her Grandchildren: Mrs. Thelma Levy a”h

Savta was a fountain of emunah. As a young girl she understood the importance of growing in Torah and observance and every time Savta spent Yom Tov at my home, I would tell my children how special it was that a large family can descend from one person who sacrificed everything to marry a yeshiva bochur and lead a life of Torah and avodah.
5 min read. Read More

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First Fruits: An Overview of the Laws of Orlah

It’s Erev Rosh Hashanah and the table is set beautifully, with the tray of apples and honey prominently in the center. Of course, everyone has their personal favorite type of apple – the Gala, the Honey Crisp, the famous Red Delicious... But, there is a new variety of apple on the market that has taken the United States by storm with its instant popularity. The Cosmic Crisp (scientific name WA-38) is an apple with dark red skin, like the color of wine, creamy white flesh, a pleasant flavor and an extended shelf life. It is so dense that the apple feels heavy when held.
6 min read. Read More

Rabbi Sholom Ber Lepkivker

Remembering Rabbi Don Yoel Levy: Kosher Transport

We usually use this forum to discuss important issues concerning various types of kosher foods, their production methods, equipment, etc. But another vital issue that must be addressed is transport. How do kosher products get from one factory to the next and, ultimately, to stores and your kosher kitchen?
5 min read. Read More

Rabbi Don Yoel Levy OB"M

Tishrei Recipe: Apple Blueberry Turnovers

These are just delicious. Fresh, defrosted, with pie dough or puff pastry. It’s like the comfort food of desserts.
2 min read. Read More

Danielle Renov

Rabbi on the Road: Columbia & Ecuador with Rabbi Yoni Rappaport

It’s a bit of a luxury to be able to daven with a minyan on annual visit trips, since the factories are often located far away from a Jewish community. It is truly amazing how Jews have an inherent bond with each other, regardless of where we are from in the world, and can connect anywhere!
1 min read. Read More

Rabbi Yoni Rappaport

Healthy Spirit – Its Tea Time

As we sit in our sukkahs, warming up with a hot glass of tea after the seudah, we’re doing more than just relaxing – we’re actually improving our health! Brew yourself a glass of your favorite tea and reap the benefits.
1 min read. Read More

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Share Your Spirit – Tishrei 5781

I always sensed that Rav Don Yoel Levy Z”L was different from, and ‘beyond’ others. This edition taught me. It is very rare that I am moved to tears. And grasp a deep if not fully understandable ‘connection’.
1 min read. Read More

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Letter from Rabbi Shlomo Weinfeld

As the Vaad Administrator, I am blessed to work alongside my colleagues on the Vaad, and to have the tremendous support of our New York headquarters and regional affiliate offices in Europe and Israel. Our staff’s widespread expertise and collective years of experience will be the foundation for the Vaad’s work now and in the future. Additionally, OK Kosher has amassed a tremendous record of teshuvos from our esteemed Poskim, which are the basis for all OK certification policies and guidelines.
2 min read. Read More

Rabbi Shlomo Weinfeld

Dear Reader – Tishrei 5781

Of course, our offices will never be the same without Rabbi Levy, OB”M; his mere presence, even the way he walked down the hall greeting each staff member with a smile, is sorely missed by all of us. We are comforted by keeping his legacy alive and continuing to uphold his high kashrus standards. We are going to be reprinting some of his past articles on kosher in the pages of the Kosher Spirit. It’s reassuring to see that, slowly but surely, the kosher standards that Rabbi Levy wanted to see become mainstream are becoming part of the standards of many reputable agencies.
2 min read. Read More

Rabbi Chaim Fogelman

A Master Teacher

Over the years, I never left a conversation with Rabbi Levy without learning some new concept or principle of Kashruth. His explanations were exact and with a level of detail equal to my understanding at the time. It is my experience this is a gift given from G-d to Master Teachers. I consider it a blessing to have been taught these things by Rabbi Levy.
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Britt Nichols

The Rebbe’s Soldier – Personal Reflections of Rabbi Don Yoel Levy by a Member of the Shechunah, כאן צוה ה׳ את הברכה

All Rabbi Levy’s accomplishments shared one common denominator: first and foremost, he was the Rebbe’s chossid. The Rebbe’s directives were his shlichus, and the Rebbe’s mivtzoim were the platform from which he spread them to the world.
4 min read. Read More

Anonymous

Our Partner and Supporter

We were so blessed to really know Rabbi Levy and saw firsthand the tremendous care he showed to the Shluchim and especially their children. From the very first day of establishment of the Tzeirei Hashluchim Winter Camp, he was our partner and supporter in ensuring the children’s camps’ success.
1 min read. Read More

Gedalia and Bassie Shemtov

Letter From Rabbi Osher Gutnick

One of the first things I noticed when I started working at the OK was how unyielding Rabbi Levy was when it came to kashrus principles. Rabbi Levy made abundantly clear what his life mission was: Kashrus without compromise. This is the path which he prepared for us and entrusted us to follow.
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Rabbi Osher Gutnick

מלמד על אהרן שלא שינה

Rabbi Levy was also of that cloth— שלא שינה. He cared to do things right—completely right; he would patiently work even years on an issue until it was indeed made right.
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Rabbi Avraham Teichman

A Giant in Kashrus

Over the course of my work at the OK, I had the merit to observe a giant in kashrus, who was extremely focused, with a clear sense of mission, and a great role model to people like me, who were trying to learn the delicate balance between real kashrus standards and good customer service.
2 min read. Read More

Rabbi Yosef Dovid Chanowitz

He Was Like A Father To Me

Writing about Rabbi Levy is probably the biggest challenge I have; much more than writing reports. English is not my mother language, but words spoken from the heart will enter the heart, and will be understood iy”h by all readers. My first feeling upon hearing of ...
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Rabbi Ouriel Serfaty

אבד “איש עקרונות” מן הארץ

Rabbi Binyomin Neufeld is a Rabbinic Coordinator at OK Kosher Certification
1 min read. Read More

Rabbi Binyomin Neufeld

Kosher Without Compromise Was a Way of Life

Kashrus had to be without any form of compromise, only after that was assured could any customer relations issue enter the conversation. Even when things were good enough he constantly pushed and prodded to do better and enhance kashrus standards and systems even more.
2 min read. Read More

Rabbi Elisha Rubin

“הדלת היתה פתוחה עבורנו תמיד”

Rabbi Ouriel Allouche is a Rabbinic Coordinator at OK Israel
1 min read. Read More

Rabbi Ouriel Allouche

A True Leader

Rabbi Levy showed me what it means to be a true leader—he led us with conviction, with principle, with a clear plan, and with true concern for each one of us. This is what propelled the OK to the top of the kashrus world and what will keep us focused on our mission to continue the shlichus that Rabbi Levy established for each one of us.
2 min read. Read More

Dina Fraenkel

A Shliach for Klal Yisroel

Rabbi Levy’s passion for and dedication to kashrus were the driving forces in his life. It was his shlichus and his responsibility to Klal Yisroel— both to bring as many types of kosher food as possible to the community, and to ensure that the standards of kashrus were the highest possible. Nothing ever diverted him for those goals.
2 min read. Read More

Chasha Brownstein

The Loss of My Dear Friend

There are no words and feelings to describe the shock and pain of the great loss of [Rabbi Levy], so young, so active, and so important, the driving force and centerpiece of his family, and the head of the OK Kosher Family. He was a great man full of love and respect to all mankind, and when we needed some good advice he was always there for us.
2 min read. Read More

Rabbi Shimon Lasker

A Man of the Highest Standards

When I discussed the details with Rabbi Levy, it was clear that despite the fact that there were certain leniencies that could be applied, the OK certifies products “lechatchila” and we will not be certifying this product. When another hechsher reached out to them, willing to certify based on the leniencies, the company said no. The company recognized and appreciated the high standards of the OK.
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Rabbi Sholom Ber Hendel

Tatty

I had the privilege of working alongside my dear father at OK Kosher and I enjoyed an extremely close working relationship. I admired my father’s scrupulous honesty, determination to do the right thing and adherence to the highest standards of kashrus without compromise.
2 min read. Read More

Chaya Camissar

Woman With A Mission

“There would have been no OK if not for Mrs. Levy,” says Rabbi Menachem Hacohen, former member of the Knesset, Chief Rabbi of Romania, and family friend, “She kept everything together. She made sure that bills could be paid, rabbis would receive their salaries, and they could continue to grow.”
6 min read. Read More

Dovid Zaklikowski

My Savta, Mrs. Thelma Levy ob”m

My Savta (great-grandmother) has been a fixture in my life from a very young age.
1 min read. Read More

Racheli Camissar

My Savta, Mrs. Thelma Levy ob”m: My Savta & My Zeidy

My Savta (great-grandmother) is someone I looked up to. She was a strong woman who always encouraged me and cared about me.
1 min read. Read More

Sara Fogelman

My Savta, Mrs. Thelma Levy ob”m: A Few Moments with My Savta, my Great-Grandmother

I know my job as a preschool teacher had a special place in her heart. She would often recount the story of how she became a preschool teacher, appointed by the Frierdiker Rebbe [Rabbi Yosef Y. Schneersohn of Lubavitch], after she married Rabbi Berel Levy o.b.m.
1 min read. Read More

Chana Fogelman

דברים לזכרו של דודי הרה”ח הרב דן יואל ליווי ע”ה נשיא ארגון הכשרות העולמי או קיי

Rabbi Shlomo Weinfeld is a member of the Kashrus Committee and the Director of OK Israel
1 min read. Read More

Rabbi Shlomo Weinfeld

דברים לזכרו של דודי היקר, הגאון החסיד הרב דן יואל בן הגאון החסיד הרב דובער ע”ה ליווי

Rabbi Kalman Weinfeld is a member of the Kashrus Committee and the Foodservice Rabbinic Coordinator at OK Kosher Certification
1 min read. Read More

Rabbi Kalman Weinfeld

A Friendship More Valuable Than Gold

He didn’t only give tzedakah; he was interested in every aspect of our lives and our community development. To him the money part was insignificant in comparison to the activity being done.
3 min read. Read More

Rabbi Shimon Freundlich

Letter from the Editor

As the president of OK Kosher, Rabbi Levy set policies, empowered the staff, and personally approved every initial report and setup, yet he never micromanaged. He led by example, never cutting corners, giving it all he had, and being as transparent as possible. He encouraged and expected the same from all the rabbis and staff he hired.
3 min read. Read More

Rabbi Chaim Fogelman

A Hands On Approach to Kashrus

He always had one thing in mind: the overall betterment of kashrus; not just his own agency, but for the standards of the entire world. In light of the fact that he truly viewed his whole life as a shlichus in spreading Torah values, this is really no surprise.
5 min read. Read More

Rabbi Eli Lando

The Lion of the Pack

In the kashrus world, the Ari Shebichabura, the lion of the pack, was Rav Don Yoel Levy. He followed in his father’s footsteps guided by his mission statement, “Kosher without compromise”.
2 min read. Read More

Rabbi Ari Senter

Letter from Rabbi Saul Emanuel

Under Reb Don Yoel’s leadership, and with a sterling reputation, the OK grew to become one of the world’s most formidable Kashrus organizations. The OK was not about signing up one more company—but rather about signing up one more company, that upheld the highest standards of kashrus. As a matter of principle, if a company was not able to comply with the OK standards, they would not receive the OK Kosher certification.
3 min read. Read More

Rabbi Saul Emanuel

Letter from Rav Usher Anshel Eckstein שליט”א – Vaad HaKashrus of Belz

When thinking about the life and achievements of Rabbi Levy, the stronghold and Kashrus empire that thrived under his constant guidance, it is difficult to fathom who will replace the captain of this great liner.
2 min read. Read More

Rav Usher A. Eckstein

A Chossid, Yiras Shomayim and a Lamdan

I saw firsthand that he would think nothing of dropping a lucrative contract for the OK if it involved lowering his standards, a value he observed from his father and made his own.
3 min read. Read More

Rabbi Sholem Y. Fishbane

Kashrus Was His Mission

Rabbi Levy z”l had a great desire to see achdus among the various Kashrus agencies. To that end, he attended numerous meetings where issues that affected the world of Kashrus were discussed.
2 min read. Read More

Rabbi Moshe Elefant & Rabbi Menachem Genack

Letter from Rabbi Sholom Tendler – Star K Kosher Certification

Rabbi Levy was a very special person and his untimely petirah is a huge void in so many places.
1 min read. Read More

Rabbi Sholom Tendler

A Humble Expert

Rabbi Levy was a very deep thinker who was able to analyze all angles and take things apart quite effectively, while simultaneously having a clear vision of the bigger picture.
2 min read. Read More

Rabbi Yitzchak Hanoka

Oh Rabbi! Pesach 5780

“I cut a hot steak with a milchig knife. What’s the status of my steak and of my knife?”
1 min read. Read More

Rabbi Levi Schapiro

Soul Nutrition – Pesach 5780

When we say the Haggadah out loud, we add the vov of Hashem’s name to the matzah.
1 min read. Read More

Rabbi Chaim Fogelman

Chassidic Insights – The Pesach Seder

The Passover Seder is not meant to be merely a recollection of past events. Instead, it is a time for each of us to relive the experience to the point that we are glowing with the light of the redemption.
3 min read. Read More

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Who’s Behind the OK – Interview with Rabbi S.B. Lepkivker

“Rabbi Lepkivker is a great asset to the OK Kosher team. His youthful energy, eagerness to learn, and his knowledge of halacha, coupled with his fluency in several languages, have positioned him as one of our up and coming Rabbinic Coordinators.” -Rabbi Don Yoel Levy, Kashrus Administrator
3 min read. Read More

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Pesach Recipe: Beet, Avocado and Arugula Salad

Beet, Avocado & Arugula Salad (serves 4) This salad is a light way to start off a Yom Tov daytime meal! I find that when I am cooking with beets, plastic gloves are a must, so my hands don’t get stained pink. Ingredients 1 ...
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Sustainable Farming Meets Kosher Eating: How Your Local Greens is Paving the Way for More Accessible Healthy Eating

by Miriam Herst What do you get when you cross kosher eating with sustainable farming? The answer is twofold: you can reallocate the hours you usually spend checking your greens for insects while supporting a company that’s earth conscious, intent on ...
6 min read. Read More

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Is Quinoa Kitniyos?

The Rishonim give two reasons for the prohibition of kitniyos. First, because of the similarities to the five chometz grains (wheat, barley, rye, spelt and oat) confusion can occur. Cooked dishes made from kitniyos appear similar to those from the five chometz grains. Furthermore, kitniyos are often ground into a flour that can easily be confused with chometz flour. Finally, kitniyos are often grown in fields adjacent to those in which chometz is grown (and processed on the same equipment or stored together) and the kitniyos and chometz can easily mix together.
3 min read. Read More

Rabbi Shlomo Klein

Your Kosher Kitchen – The BBQ

Spring is in the air and everyone is looking forward to spending more time outside. This, of course, means its BBQ season! Let’s explore the common kashrus issues facing the kosher consumer. 
3 min read. Read More

Rabbi Yakov Teichman

Rabbi on the Road – Germany & Switzerland with Rabbi Sholom Ber Hendel

One of the memorable plants that I visited during this trip was the iconic Toblerone facility. The Toblerone products have been produced in Bern, Switzerland since the early 1900s and certified by the OK for many years.
2 min read. Read More

Rabbi Sholom Ber Hendel

A Closer Look – Instant Coffee

OK Kosher recommends purchasing kosher certified instant coffee for year-round use, and kosher for Passover instant coffee for Passover use.
2 min read. Read More

Rabbi Sholom Ber Hendel

Healthy Spirit – Chicken Soup

Science backs what your mother has always told you—chicken soup is the Jewish penicillin!
1 min read. Read More

Dina Fraenkel

Editor’s Letter – Pesach 5780

At the OK we take our responsibilities very seriously and as long as factories are producing products with the OK symbol on the label you can rest assured that our rabbis will be visiting and monitoring the productions. 
2 min read. Read More

Rabbi Chaim Fogelman

Soul Nutrition – Chanukah 5780

Our Chachomim tell us that the Chanukah menorah is placed by the door or by the window in a way that it lights up the darkness outside. In the Bais Hamikdosh, the menorah gave light as well, and the light of the Bais Hamikdosh spread out to the world.
1 min read. Read More

Rabbi Chaim Fogelman

Chassidic Insights – Hints for Chanukah in the Torah

What is the connection between the word “nechoshet” — “copper” — the final word of Parshat Terumah, with the command in the beginning of Parshat Tetzaveh to prepare pure olive oil for illumination?
2 min read. Read More

Rabbi Moshe Bogomilsky

Who’s Behind the OK – Rabbi Shlomo Weinfeld

The best thing about working at the OK is the knowledge that I am part of fulfilling a sacred mission at all times, as a member of a team that is expanding the choice of kosher products under strict supervision with no compromise, as well as aiding facilities on behalf of the public demand, trust and recognition of OK -certified products.
3 min read. Read More

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Beyond Meat Packaging OK Kosher Certified

Going Above and Beyond with Beyond Meat

Enter Beyond Meat, a mission driven company that’s keen to change that equation with its plant-based burgers, ground “meat” and sausages. Unlike other meat substitutes, Beyond’s products are designed to look, cook, and taste like the real thing.
3 min read. Read More

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Chanukah Recipe – Wontons in Garlic Sauce

This recipe began with my obsession with wontons and garlic sauce from a particular Chinese restaurant that’s nowhere near my home. Naturally, I had to recreate it myself. Since then, these wontons have become the stuff of Pascal family legend. It’s my family’s all-time favorite Yom Tov appetizer. The only downside? It’s pretty much guaranteed to upstage basically any other dish you serve at the same meal!
2 min read. Read More

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A Closer Look – Olives

Olives are small, green fruit that grown on trees in Eretz Yisroel and around the world. They are one of the Shivas Haminim mentioned in the Torah.
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Rabbi Sholom Ber Hendel

Keeping Kosher In…Antarctica

The only way for Shabbat observant Jews to see Antarctica is by cruise line, and passengers are not allowed to bring their own food and are certainly not able to use kitchen space and equipment to cook, reheat or refrigerate food. Realizing that the only way it could be done was with a large enough group that a cruise line would facilitate kosher catering, Moishie sent Dan a message asking what he thought about leading a kosher cruise to Antarctica. Within seconds, Dan was emphatically on board.
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Leibel Baumgarten

Your Kosher Kitchen – Convection Ovens

The idea behind the convection oven is that it provides an even circulation of hot air, so the product is baked and browned evenly (and not burnt on one side) and in less time than a traditional oven. There are some additional varieties of convection ovens, but they all use the same basic mechanism of a fan blowing hot air.
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Rabbi Sholom Ber Lepkivker

Cholov Yisroel in California

Walk into any kosher grocery or supermarket in Los Angeles or surrounding communities and you have not just one, but a choice of two, brands of fresh, local, OK certified Cholov Yisroel milk. While it may seem strange to get excited about a simple cup of milk, for many people in these communities this has been a long-awaited dream come true.
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Rabbi Shlomo Klein

Online Smicha – Bringing Practical Halacha to All

One of the areas of the Jewish home which can be the most complicated is the kitchen. The laws of kosher are numerous and complex, and can seem like a maze to those who are unfamiliar. In addition to the requirements for the actual food products to be kosher, there are Torah mandated laws regarding the actual cooking process, as well as the strict separation of milk and meat. 
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Healthy Spirit – Yogurt

The miracle of Chanukah and the defeat of the Greek general came about because of Yehudis, the heroine who plied the general with dairy and wine in order to make him fall asleep so she could kill him. Here’s 8 facts about one of the world’s most popular dairy products.
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Dina Fraenkel

Letter from the Editor – Chanukah 5780

At the OK we do our introspection and review all of our checks and balances in the month of Elul. This time of year we reserve to look to the future, and as we enter the month of Kislev, we join together with OK rabbis from across the globe for our Annual Mashgiach Conference.
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Rabbi Chaim Fogelman

Soul Nutrition – Chanukah 5780

מחק ברחמיך הרבים שטרי חובותינו… On the Yomim Noraim we ask Hashem, in His mercy, to erase all of our spiritual debts. The Roshei Teivos of the tefillah spell out the word בשמחה , because it is only through joy that the decrees ...
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Rabbi Chaim Fogelman

Chassidic Insights: One Long Day

Commenting on that fact, the Talmud explains that the repetition of the expression “Gd saw that it was good” refers to two types of good: Tov lashamayim and Tov labrios — good to heavens (i.e., in matters between man and Gd) and good to the creations (good in matters between man and man).
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Who’s Behind the OK – Rabbi Sholom Kesselman

“Rabbi Kesselman is a talented individual who is well versed in Halacha and its practical implications. Managing the foodservice department in Los Angeles is no easy task and Reb Sholom is magnificently upholding (and improving) the highest level of kashrus. A Talmid Chochom and a mentch, we are lucky to have a man of his stature on the OK team.” - Rabbi Don Yoel Levy, Kashrus Administrator
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Wine Processing

The Gemara asks, “How do we know that wine is prohibited?” The rabbis then explain that the source for this prohibition is the posuk in Devarim 32:38 that compares wine offerings to idol sacrifices. 
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Rabbi Benzion Chanowitz

Stories From the Road With Rabbi Yitzchak Hanoka, Tri-State Rabbinic Coordinator

From this true story you learn the lesson of--and power of—never giving up. You keep trying. Our job is to go out and do, the rest is up to Hashem!
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Gingered Apple Pinwheel Tarts

Irresistible combination of flaky puff pastry and apples poached in a slightly caramelized buttery ginger honey syrup SERVES 4 1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed Preheat oven to 425 degrees 3 Gala apples ½ cup Hawai’i Harvest Bubba Baba Blue Ginger blended with Hawaiian ...
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Sweeten Your Harvest Celebration with Hawai’i Harvest Honey

This year add the taste of Hawaii to your harvest celebration with Hawai’i Harvest Honey’s raw artisanal honeys. All are Kosher and USDA certified organic and never heated, so the honey’s beneficial enzymes, pollens and propolis come to you exactly as the bees intended.
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Your Kosher Kitchen – Hot Plates

According to some Poskim, if the above requirements are met, one may place completely cooked dry foods on a hot plate on Shabbos. However, any food that is moist and will drip – even if the food is only moist inside, but the moisture will drip to the outside when heated – may not be placed on a hot plate on Shabbos.
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Rabbi Levi Schapiro

A Closer Look – Gelatin

In order for the gelatin to be kosher certified, it must be made from kosher animals that underwent kosher slaughter and processing, or from kosher fish.
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Rabbi Sholom Ber Hendel

Keeping Kosher In…The Outback

One of the core missions of Chabad of RARA is to assist Jews in rural areas in keeping kosher themselves, which can be a daunting challenge.
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Leibel Baumgarten

Healthy Spirit: The Power of Fish

Many Jews have the custom to put the head of a fish on their Rosh Hashanah table. It’s a symbol to be like the head, and not the tail, to think before acting, and to be the best version of ourselves. Not only is fish a symbolic food on the table, but it can be a very healthy component of our seudos during a month of heavy eating.
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Question for the OK – Tishrei 5780

Why do I occasionally see a specific product where some packages have the OK symbol and some do not?
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Share Your Spirit – Tishrei 5780

Have you tried 88 Acres products? 88 Acres products are ~ certified and totally delicious. We asked the owner what sets them apart. 
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Dear Reader – Tishrei 5780

Dear Reader, As I sit at my desk and reflect on the past year, I cannot help but feel like it has gone by so quickly, while at the same time, it was one of the slowest moving years of my life.
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Rabbi Chaim Fogelman

Soul Nutrition – Tishrei 5780

Within nature, there are positive potentials that can be used for holiness, and undesirable qualities which must be discarded. Differentiating between these two categories is not easy.
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Rabbi Chaim Fogelman

Chassidic Insights: All One Family

When these four sons get together, they can bring a fifth son to the Seder table - a son or a daughter who is Jewish but for some reason was not planning to come to a Seder table.
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Who’s Behind The OK: Interview With Rabbi Levi Feigelstock

KS: Where did you grow up? Where did you go to yeshiva? RLF: I was born and raised in Vancouver, Canada. I attended Vancouver Hebrew Academy for elementary school, and after my bar mitzvah I left home to attend Mesivta of Postville, the Lubavitcher ...
4 min read. Read More

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OK Kosher Revolutionizes Infestation Monitoring & Control

One of our more recent departmental additions is the Tolaim Committee, tasked with staying on top of the latest developments in produce infestation and checking techniques.
4 min read. Read More

Rabbi Yakov Teichman

Kosher Trailblazer: OK Kosher Salutes Those Who Go The Extra Mile

Blue Diamond Growers™ continually strives to offer new, innovative and exciting almond products to our consumers.
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What Happens to the Rest of the Grapes?

Rav Zevid said, “The sediment of Aramean wine called (דורדיא) durdaya is permitted after twelve months have elapsed.”
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Rabbi Benzion Chanowitz

A Closer Look – Red Color

There are exciting developments in the red color industry from OK-certified color manufacturer Chr. Hansen.
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Rabbi Sholom Ber Hendel

Pesach Recipe: California Gourmet Fudgy Brownies

Makes 20-28 squares Ingredients 3 eggs 1 1/2 cups sugar 3/4 cup oil 3/4 cup potato starch 1 cup cocoa powder (Dutch works, too) 1/2 tsp sea salt 1 1/2 cups California Gourmet 48%-Cocoa Kosher for Passover Chocolate Chips Directions 1. ...
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Keeping Kosher (for Pesach) in…RUSSIA

There are close to 170 communities under the Federation umbrella, 45 of which have a Rabbi, and close to 125 which do not.
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Leibel Baumgarten