[Avodah] NOT Banned as Kitniyot during Pesach - pop-corn, fresh peas, and peanuts

Rabbi Meir G. Rabi meirabi at gmail.com
Thu Apr 18 07:07:24 PDT 2024

It seems that everyone, even Ashkenasim who refrain from Kitniyos, may
enjoy pop-corn, peanuts and peanut butter during Pesach.


The Kitniyos ban was initiated when everyone was baking Matza at home
throughout Pesach. This Matza was 10-12mm thick, soft and chewy, and was a
stringency imposed to not make Matza 50-60mm thick, as they used to in
earlier times. Such Matza was familiar to the ChChaim and other Poskim and
they write about it without any suggestion of protest [MAvraham, ShA HaRav,
ArHaShulchan and MBerruah [486:3] describe Matza as Rachos VeAsuYos KeSeFog
- soft and spongy]

Everyone was familiar with the need to complete the Matza manufacturing
within ‘18 minutes’. The severe consequence of Chamets was universally
known and respected. It would be unthinkable to have even the slightest
concern that even the most uninformed part of the population would go
anywhere near violating this prohibition.

However, it was suspected that some may err when seeing knowledgeable Gd
Fearing people cooking Kitniyot porridge, and draw the false conclusion
that Chamets is only problem when baking with flour but there is no problem
when cooking grains as a porridge and will therefore cook wheat or barley
porridge during Pesach.

This is the essence of the ShA HaRav. He makes no mention of baking, KVCh
of flour, his Kitniyot discussion is limited to Tavshil, porridge.

=   =   =   =   =   =   =

ShA HaRav 453: 3&4

Al HaTorah

my translation.

Take note he speaks exclusively about Tavshil, he makes no mention of
Kitniyot flour, he makes no reference to banning baked, non-Tavshil foods
even though they have been combined with water.

The custom in these locations is to refrain from eating a Tavshil [cooked
recipe] of Kitniyos

Not even on the last day of the Chag [when people eat Gebrochts]

The reason for this is, there many who are not familiar with these
intricate laws

And upon observing that during Pesach a Kitniyos Tavshil is being consumed

Will erroneously permit cooking a similar Chamets Tavshil

Since all year round Tavshillim are cooked from both wheat etc and also

It would seem therefore that porridge of any grain is permitted

[However] the custom only applies to those Kitniyos

Whose [cooked recipe] Tavshil might be mistaken for a similar recipe made
from wheat

As they are very similar as both are known as MaAseh KeDeiRah [porridge]

=   =   =   =   =   =   =

The Levush [453] goes a bit further adding BAKING bread, but does not
mention the word ‘flour’. Upon a close reading of the Levush it is clear he
is not discussing regular bread made from flour, because his concern is not
that the dough becomes Chamets but that the wheat kernel will be swollen
i.e. Chamets. So he too is not discussing the bread we are familiar with
but the same type of porridge which is not cooked but baked into some type
of loaf

In these locations the custom is to not eat cooked Kitniyot dishes,

Similarly mustard [they cooked mustard? See 462]

Even though these cannot become Chamets

They are prohibited by decree to prevent confusion with the 5 grains that
do become Chamets

Since Kitniyot and the 5 grains are both cooked as a porridge

The decree prevents people mistakenly thinking that cooking porridge is not
Chamets [they were baking Matza throughout Pesach and knew that it must be
baked quickly to prevent it becoming Chamets but people may think that
cooking does not make Chamets]

Furthermore, some make Kitniyos ‘bread’ which might be confused with other
breads and will even eat bread that includes a kernel of wheat that became
swollen and is Chamets

And sometimes wheat grains are mixed amongst the Kitniyot and are very
difficult to locate and remove, and these wheat grains that have become
Chamets will be baked amongst the Kitnoyot grains and will not be Battel
since they are baked during Pesach

And that is the reason we strictly prohibit Kitniyot

Nevertheless, we do not prohibit foods that Kitniyot inadvertently fell into

And we may light with Kitniyot oil [it is not banned as an unacceptable
risk because the oil in the lamps often drips into the foods]

And no penalty is applied if oil does drip into the food.

And they may be kept in the home [unlike Chamets which we worry may be
inadvertently consumed and must therefore be removed]

=   =   =   =   =   =   =

MBerrurah 453:6

Al HaTorah

Although the MBerrurah adds flour to the ban, he does not ban eating
Kitniyot that have not been combined with water and baked or cooked i.e.
peanuts, peanut butter, pop-corn, fresh peas and beans, and one may
legitimately speculate about cooking Kitniyot that are not at risk of
containing wheat, like tinned peas.

The reason for this stringency is that Sometimes wheat is found amongst
Kitniyot and they cannot be identified and removed with confidence, and
will become Chamets when baked or cooked

Furthermore, Kitniyot is often ground into flour and often baked as bread
and many will confuse them and will end up being lenient both with bread
and with flour

Accordingly all breads and cooked recipes of Kitniyot are banned

and even cooking whole Kitniyot is banned

Besides there is a concern that there may be wheat amongst the Kitniyot

=   =   =   =   =   =

It seems that everyone, even Ashkenasim who refrain from Kitniyos, may
enjoy pop-corn, peanuts and peanut butter during Pesach.


Meir G. Rabi

0423 207 837
+61 423 207 837
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