Is it muter to move pots on the blech closer to the flames?
In the Iggros Moshe1 it
says that if the food is fully cooked, and is situated on the blech on a spot that is yad
soledes bo2, one may move the food closer to the flames. See also Sefer
Shmiras Shabbos Kehilchaso 1-footnote 111.
If after closing a pot I
realized that the food was not yet fully cooked, may the food be eaten?
Last week we learned that it is ossur
to put a lid on a pot of food not fully cooked. If however, the food was already cooked to
the degree of maachal Ben Derosai3, and the lid was put back, the
food may be eaten. 4
By mistake I took the
cholent pot off the blech thinking that it was the soup pot, may I put the cholent pot
This is a difficult one, and
there are various opinions on this matter. HaRav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach Ztzl5
holds that one may return the food, see the reference in the footnote.
Are there any halachos
as to how one is allowed to wrap towels around pots on the blech?
Yes there are, and the source
for these halachos is in simon 257. In a nutshell:
It is ossur to enwrap (hatmana)
with towels, pillows etc. a pot of food that is on the fire (or blech or hot plate). If,
however, a noticeable amount of the pot remains uncovered, it is permitted.6
For example: if one leaves the top uncovered and only enwraps the sides7, or if
only covers the top. Therefore, when placing a challa to warm on top of the urn, one must
take care not to totally enwrap the challa with a towel.
One of the conditions of chazora is
that the pot must be held in ones hands. I also recall that one should not take food
out of the pot while it is still on the blech or hot plate8, yet I am not a
magician. How is it done?
A If there are two people, one can
hold the pot and the other can take out the food. If you are by yourself, you may place
the pot on the counter all the while holding the pot with one hand, take out the food, and
return the pot to the blech or hot plate.9
A Vort on the Parsha
It says in the possuk (37:24), that the pit
was empty, it had no water.
Rashi explains that although it did not
contain water, it contained snakes and scorpions instead.
The Vilna Gaon explains that since the
Torah is compared to water, when a person is void of Torah, he becomes filled with evil
ideas and inclinations.
This is analogous to the explanation of the
Gaon to the Possuk in Mishlei that says that a person must strive in his daily actions to
raise himself to higher levels in order to prevent one from going down. The Gaon explains
that if a person does not continually rise, he will automatically plunge downwards.
Picture yourself climbing the going-down
escalator, if you ascend slower than the descending speed of the escalator or if you
stand still for even a split second, you immediately descend. This world pulls us
downwards, and to remain spiritually high, one has to continually ascend to higher levels.
Food For Thought
If the flames or electricity has gone
out from under my pots, may I take the pots to a neighbors blech or hot plate?
If the cholent is
burning, what may be done to save it?
If the fire
extinguished under the blech, may I ask a non-Jew to relight the fire?
Food was cooked for an
ill person, is it muter for someone healthy to eat the leftovers?
Answers coming next week.
Iggeres HaGra - (part 1)
It is well-known that this world is all emptiness, that
every amusement is worthless, and woe is anyone who pursues vanity, which is worthless.
And don't envy the rich, for "riches are hoarded by their owner to his
misfortune" (Koheles 5:12); "As he had come from his mother's womb, naked will
he return...exactly as he came he must depart, and what did he gain by toiling for the
wind?" (ib. 14, 15); "Even if he should live a thousand years twice over, but
find no contentment - do not all go to the same place?" (Ib. 6:6); "Even if man
lives many years, let him rejoice in all of them, but let him remember that the days of
darkness will be many. All that comes is futility" (ib. 11:8); "And of joy, what
does it accomplish?" (ib. 2:2). Tomorrow you will cry for having laughed today.