- Question: [Sunday, 11th Nissan 5783]
I read your recent article that frozen fish needs to be kosher for Pesach being that some manufacturers add starch to the fish for reasons of preservation. I was not aware of this until now and in the past have freely used frozen fish for Pesach cooking even though it does not say on it that it is kosher for Pesach. I am really freaked out, do I need to Kasher my Pesach kitchen?
No, you do not need to Kasher your Pesach kitchen, and may continue using it as usual. This is due to several reasons as will be explained below. Nonetheless, in the future, you should try to only purchase frozen fish that is certified kosher for Pesach.
Explanation: There are several reasons to argue that Bedieved, one does not need to be stringent to require Kashering of his vessels if a non-kosher for Pesach product was cooked in them, if it only contains a mere suspicion of Chametz, and does not contain a definite Chametz ingredient. The reasons are as follows:
- perhaps there is no starch in them at all.
- even if there is starch in them, perhaps it is corn based and not Chametz. [Cornstarch accounts for 70% of all starch in the world, and only 8% of starch is wheat based. In China, the main source of starch is indeed corn and not wheat, even though wheat is also sometimes used.]
- Even if the fish was glazed with wheat-based starch, perhaps it is nullified in 60 times in the food.
- Even if there isn’t 60 times in the food versus the wheat starch, perhaps the wheat starch was made from a kernel of wheat that were not washed.
- Even if the wheat kernels were washed perhaps, they did not split and become Chametz.
- In the event that this happened last year, then 12 months have already passed, and according to some opinions the vessels no longer need Kashering.
Sources: See Admur 467:20 regarding sugar that Bedieved in a time of great loss or a loss of the joy of Yom Tov, one may be lenient to eat a food that had non-kosher for Pesach sugar cooked in it even though the sugar has a suspicion of flour, and the same would even more so apply here as the worry is much more distant; See Chok Yaakov 447:34; 467:21 and 23; Elya Zuta 447:12