9.19.2012

What makes a Kosher pickle Kosher?

I think a lot of people do not even think about this but it has really been on my mind ever since I started to pickle, ferment and preserve. Hey I figured if I added a piece of garlic wala Kosher. I knew it was not, but what the heck Oui Vey the thought never went away and today I took the thought and got the right information.

After all I have two little Jews for children. Why my son even had a Bar mitvah. I think it is my duty to keep you informed. Now as usual I did do a lot of research. Here is one thing that make my panties roll up. When I go to a site to find out about a certain subject please please please do not try to sell me a book for you financial gain. I know that people need to make money but when I was younger I did not have to pay anyone or get referred to a website to buy something when I was looking something up in the dictionary.

Ok enough but really on one site named My J****H Learning most of the information was promoting the book The Joy of Pickling. Great book but I want an answer not a book, so then I went to Answers dot com and they did not even know how to spell the word cleaned and between the advertisements and links I had to search for my search!

Alas I came to WiseGeek "Clear answers for common questions ! Wala ,,,,, here is what the site quotes "

"A pickle is kosher if it meets Jewish dietary laws — kashrut. In addition, many pickles are labeled as kosher pickles because they are made in the style of pickles served at Jewish delicatessens. People who are concerned about complying with kosher restrictions should always check the label to make sure that the pickles are, in fact, kosher. Although it may be confusing to conceive of a non-kosher kosher pickle, it does happen on occasion.
The primary issue with pickles and their status as a kosher food is the use of animal products at some pickling and canning facilities. A pickle is made by brining a cucumber in a solution of water and salt. Sometimes, the brine is emulsified with polysorbates, which are made from animal fat. If the polysorbates are from kosher animals such as cattle slaughtered in accordance with kosher law, the pickles would be considered kosher. However, the concern is that the pickles could be contaminated with products of so-called “unclean animals,” such as pigs, or that the animals used to make the polysorbates were not slaughtered properly. As a general rule, it is easier to make pickles without polysorbates if a facility is pursuing kosher certification."

and
  • Different brands use different types of cucumbers, vinegar, and spice blends to achieve the signature flavor of their kosher pickles. Some varieties of cucumber have bitter skins, while some are not bitter.

  • As a general rule, it is easier to make pickles without polysorbates if a facility is pursuing kosher certification. In order to be certified, the kosher pickle facility must permit inspection by a rabbinical kashrut inspector, or mashgiach.
And here is a quote from one site that say's it is as easy as using Kosher salt. Hey it works for them. The reason I did not include links in some of these sites is to not un-promote a site.

“Kosher,” in this case, doesn’t refer to Jewish dietary laws – “kashrut” – or to a specific group of people, but instead, indicates the use of kosher salt used to make the fermentation brine for “pickling”. “Kosher pickles” also means the inclusion of raw garlic cloves in the pickling brine. No garlic cloves? No kosher" 

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