The laws of Shehiyah by roasting

Introduction:

The following section will discuss the laws of placing food directly on a fire or directly on coals, without the use of a pot and the like. This form of cooking is referred to as roasting. In chapter 1 the discussion was only with regards to placing food in a pot, and then placing it on a fire, which is referred to as cooking.

 

1. The type of oven:

Regarding roasting directly on a fire it makes no difference what type of oven one is using, or if one is not using an oven at all but a grill and the like, rather all fires have the same restrictions that are to be explained.

 

2. Placing meat on or near the fire/coals:

A. Placing raw meat directly over a fire right before Shabbos:[1]

It was already explained in chapter 1 that raw meat is permitted to be placed [on an oven] right before Shabbos, even on a Tanur oven which was not swept or covered. However this only refers to when one is cooking [the meat] in a pot, being that [in a pot] the food does not cook quickly, and thus one removes his mind from it until tomorrow. [There is thus no worry that he may come to stir the coals] as it is able to [fully] cook by staying there the entire night without needing to stoke the coals. Similarly this is also the law with regards to roasting [the meat] in a pot[2].

However regarding roasting [meat] next to a fire, or on top of coals [such as a barbecue], it is forbidden to place the meat there [right before Shabbos], even if it is raw, and even if it is placed in an oven and one covered the opening of the oven[3].

The reason for this is: because when roasting in a way that there is no pot separating between it and the coals, it roasts quickly and can be ready to eat for the night meal. Thus we are worried he may forget that it is Shabbos and he will remove the covering of the [opening of the] oven and will stoke the coals in order to [hasten the] completion of the roasting.

 

B. The law by soft meat:[4]

All the above is referring to meat of an ox, or goat or ram and the like, of other species which have tough meat, and thus the wind does not damage it. However meat of a kid [young goat] or chicken and the like, of other species which have soft meat, and thus is damaged by wind, it is permitted to roast them on coals or next to the coals within a closed oven. This applies even if there isn’t plaster sealing it, whether it is completely raw, or whether it has begun to roast but has not yet roasted to the point of the food of Ben Drusaiy.

The reason for this is: because certainly one will not open up the oven to stoke the coals being that [by doing so] wind [will enter and] damage the meat.
However the above only refers to when the [meat of the] young goat and the chicken are cut up into pieces. However if they are whole, then the wind does not damage them, and thus they have the same law as the meat of an ox and goat [which are forbidden to be left in an oven which is not plastered shut if they are not yet half cooked].

The definition of a whole lamb and chicken: As long as the main[5] body part is whole, even if it does not have its head or legs on it, it is considered whole in this regard [that the wind does not damage it] as the rib cage protects it from its inside that the wind not damage it.

C. The law if the meat was roasted to the point of Ben Drusaiy:[6]

If [the meat] was roasted on both sides before Shabbos to the point of the food of Ben Drusaiy, it is permitted to leave it [on the fire in the oven] even if it is whole, even if it is meat of an ox or goat. It may be left even outside the oven on top of coals, or next to the coals. [Furthermore] even according to those which prohibit to leave a pot on a Kirah which is not swept or covered, as long as the further cooking will condense it in a beneficial way, nevertheless when roasting on top of the actual coals, they agree it is permitted [to leave it there] if it was roasted before Shabbos to the point of the food of Ben Drusaiy. As since it reached Ben Drusaiy, if he will stoke the coals it will scorch the meat [and thus there is no worry that one will stoke the coals]. However when roasting [meat] not actually on top of the coals [but rather near the coals], it is forbidden to leave it there according to those which prohibit there [in 253/9] to leave a pot on top of a [non-covered] Kirah as long as further condensing is beneficial to it, unless it has roasted so much from before Shabbos to the point that further condensing will damage it. [However practically] it was already explained there [in 253/9], that the custom is like those which permit to leave a pot [over an oven] as long as it has already cooked to the point Ben Drusaiy from before Shabbos, and thus according to this it is permitted to leave the meat which has roasted to the point of the food of Ben Drusaiy from before Shabbos, even if it is outside the oven near the coals, and certainly [it is allowed] if it is on the coals itself.

 

Summary:

If the meat began to cook before Shabbos: If both sides of the meat will be half roasted before Shabbos begins then it is permitted to be left on the actual fire/coals according to all opinions.[7] However to be allowed to leave it near the coals is disputed regarding if it is required to be fully roasted before Shabbos. The custom is like the lenient opinion to allow it to be left near the coals if it will be half cooked before Shabbos.

If the meat will not be half cooked before Shabbos on both sides it is forbidden to leave it on or even near the coals/fire unless the meat is cut and is soft, such as cut pieces of chicken or kid meat, in which case it is then permitted to be placed inside an oven if the oven is closed, whether on or near the fire.

Placing raw meat on or near a fire/coals right before Shabbos without enough time for it to begin to cook before Shabbos: Although by cooking this was permitted in all cases, nevertheless by roasting it is only permitted in the following case: Tender meat which is cut, such as cut pieces of chicken or kid meat, is permitted to be left inside an oven if the oven is closed. However if the meat is hard, such as cow meat, or is soft but is whole [which is defined as that its body is intact even if its head and legs have been cut], or is cut but is being barbecued over an open fire as opposed to in an oven, then it is forbidden to leave the meat there before Shabbos without enough time for it to become half cooked on both sides.

The reason for why the law here by roasting raw meat right before Shabbos is more strict then by cooking is:[8] because when roasting in a way that there is no pot separating between it and the coals, the food roasts quickly and can be ready to eat for the meal at night, and thus we are worried that one may forget that it is Shabbos and will stoke the coals in order to hasten the completion of the roasting.  However if the meat is soft and cut and is in a closed oven then it is allowed as certainly one will not open up the oven to stoke the coals being that by doing so the wind will damage the meat.

3. The law by an oven which is plastered shut:[9]

If one plastered clay around the covering of the opening of one’s oven [there are no Shehiyah restrictions at all in all cases and], it is permitted to leave the meat inside. This applies whether it is roasting on coals, or whether it is cooking in a pot, whether it is completely raw, or whether it had already begun to roast or cook before Shabbos and did not yet roast or cook to the point of the food of Ben Drusaiy.

The reason for this is: because in such a case we are not worried that one may trouble himself so much to break through the plaster in order to stoke the coals and will not remember that it is Shabbos.[10]  Therefore it is permitted to leave the food inside.


4. How to remove on Shabbos meat that was left roasting on top of coals or a fire:[11] 

[When leaving meat actually on top of coals] one needs to be careful to delay removing the meat on Shabbos, from on top of the coals, until after the coals have dimmed, in order so that one will not extinguish anything when removing the meat that is on them. This is not similar to a pot [that is on top of coals] in which case one is allowed to remove it from on top the coals on Shabbos, as explained in chapter 253/11, as the pot does not extinguish the coals at all [when it is removed], however meat slightly extinguishes the coals (with the gravy that drips from it) when it is removed.

 

Summary:

In all cases that it is allowed for one to leave meat on top of a fire/coals one needs to be careful to delay removing the meat on Shabbos from on top of the fire/coals, until after the coals have dimmed and fire has extinguished. This is necessary in order to prevent extinguishing any of the coals/fire upon removing the meat, being that the gravy drips from it when it is removed.

 

Removing food from a barbeque:

Based on the above, one may not remove meat from a barbecue until the coals and fire have extinguished.  Alternatively, one can slip a pan in between the grate and the coals, thus having any dripped gravy fall onto the pan rather than the coals.

 

5. If one transgressed and left raw meat on the fire/coals from before Shabbos in a prohibited way:[12]

By an open oven, or outside an oven: If one transgressed and left meat which was not roasted to the point of the food of Ben Drusaiy, in an area that it is forbidden to leave it [such as on the actual coals without being in a pot], then whether this was done inadvertently [without prior knowledge of the prohibition] or advertently [with prior knowledge of the prohibition], it is forbidden [to be eaten both] for him and for others until enough time has passed after Shabbos for one to be able to have roasted it.
By a closed oven: However if one left it in a closed oven, even if it was not plastered shut with clay, it is permitted after the fact, even if it is meat of an ox and goat. As there are opinions which permit [this to be done] even initially, as they are not worried that one will open the oven in order to stoke it, and one may thus rely on their opinion after the fact [that one already left it in a closed oven].
By cut soft meat: Similarly if one left cut kid [young goat] meat and the like [chicken] near the coals and not on the actual coals, whether [it was left] inside an oven even if it is open, or whether it was left outside an oven, then it is to be permitted [to be eaten] after the fact. The reason for this is being that there are opinions which permit this even initially to be done, as they do not suspect that one may come to stoke the coals, as since the meat is soft, if one were to stoke the coals it would damage the meat, as [when placing meat near the coals as opposed to on it he shows that] he only desires the heat of the fire [as opposed to the quickness of the cooking, and thus he has no reason to stoke it].

However when placed on top of the actual coals, even kids meat is forbidden according to all opinions, even after the fact, if it was not roasted to the point of the food of Ben Drusaiy from before Shabbos.

The reason for this is: because since one placed it on top of the actual coals [we see that] his main intention is that it roast quickly even though this will cause it to get scorched, and [thus we suspect] that he may come to stoke it. However once it has been roasted to the point of the food of Ben Drusaiy, then since it is somewhat already fit to eat, [we do not suspect that he will stoke the coals as] why would he stoke it and damage the meat [if it can already be eaten], and therefore [when already half roasted] it is permitted even according to those which initially prohibit this even by a pot.

 

Summary: If one transgressed and left raw meat on the fire/coals from before Shabbos in a prohibited way

Then the meat is forbidden until enough time has passed after Shabbos to roast the meat, unless:

1) The oven was closed even if it was not plastered shut.

2) The oven was left open but the meat is cut and soft, like pieces of chicken and was left near the coals as opposed to on top of them. If this meat was placed on top of the coals then it is forbidden.

 

6. Placing other raw foods on or near coals right before Shabbos:[13]

Foods that are normally eaten raw: Fruits that are eaten raw, such as apples and the like, are permitted to be roasted very close to Shabbos, even if there is no time for them to become [even half] roasted from before Shabbos.

It is permitted to leave them even not on top of the actual coals, in accordance to our custom which was explained that anything which was roasted to the point of the food of Ben Drusaiy [from before Shabbos] is permitted for one to leave [on the fire], and [thus also] fruits which are eaten raw [may by be left on the fire as they] are no less different then a roast which has been roasted to the point of the food of Ben Drusaiy[14].
Foods which are not eaten raw: Fruits which are not eaten when they are raw, including even an onion which is at times eaten raw, nevertheless [since] it is not good to eat them raw as [opposed to what is done with] apples and the like, [therefore it is forbidden to roast them too close to Shabbos]. This law applies to any food which is not good to eat raw, in which case it is forbidden to roast it close to Shabbos, unless there is enough time left before Shabbos to have it roast to the point of the food of Ben Drusaiy. However if it was not roasted to the point of the food of Ben Drusaiy from before Shabbos, then it is forbidden to leave it in all areas where its forbidden to leave meat of an ox and goat that were not roasted to the point of the food of Ben Drusaiy.

 

Summary:

Foods that are normally eaten raw: Fruits that are eaten raw, such as apples and the like, are permitted to be roasted very close to Shabbos, even if there is no time for them to become [even half] roasted from before Shabbos.

It is permitted to leave them even not on top of the actual coals.

Foods that can be eaten raw but are better when cooked: If the food is not good when eaten raw, even if at times one does eat it raw, such as onions, then it has the same laws as hard meat, that it is forbidden to roast it close to Shabbos, unless there is enough time left before Shabbos to have it roast to the point of the food of Ben Drusaiy.

 

Summary of differences between Shehiyah of roasting and Shehiyah of cooking:

  1. By roasting one may leave cut and soft meat inside a closed oven even though it will not cook to the point of Ben Drusaiy before Shabbos.
  2. By roasting on coals, if the food is half cooked, the food is permitted to be left according to all opinions.
  3. By cooking, if the meat is completely raw right before Shabbos it is allowed under all circumstances, while by roasting it is only allowed by cut and soft meat left in a closed oven.
  4. By roasting, if one transgressed and left the meat in a closed oven it is permitted to be eaten on Shabbos.
  5. By roasting there is no difference between on or near the fire, as in both scenarios the Shehiyah restrictions apply. However by cooking in a Kirah there is a difference if it is on or near the Kirah, as when doing so near the oven the Shehiyah restrictions do not apply.

 

Practical Q&A

May one set up a coal barbecue before Shabbos to eat the food for the Friday night meal?

It is permitted to leave meat and other foods in the barbecue so long as the foods are half cooked on both sides before Shabbos. However one may not remove the meat from the barbecue until the coals and fire have extinguished.  Hence on a practical level Barbecues may not be the ideal method of having a Friday night meal due to these restrictions. Alternatively, one can slip a pan in between the grate and the coals, thus having any dripped gravy fall onto the pan rather than the coals.

If one transgressed and left than less than half roasted meat on a Barbecue into Shabbos? Seemingly if the barbecue was left closed from the entrance of Shabbos then all the food is permitted to be eaten even if it was not half cooked by the time Shabbos arrived, as stated above in Halacha 5.  However this matter requires further analysis, as today people are no longer particular against opening up the ovens due to the wind, and hence perhaps this leniency should no longer apply!

 

May one set up a gas Barbecue before Shabbos?

Has the same law as does a coal barbecue.

 

May one leave meat roasting in a George Forman before Shabbos to be eaten for the Friday night meal?

  1. Leaving the meat in the grill from before Shabbos:

    If it does not have adjustable temperatures:  Then it may have even less than half cooked meat or poultry placed in it before Shabbos.

    It has adjustable temperatures: Then the meat must be half roasted on both sides before Shabbos.

     

  2. Removing the meat from the grill on Shabbos:

Works based on Temperature: If the grill is temperature based[15] then the food may only be removed when the grill’s heat is on.[16]  VeTzaruch Iyuin due to Meigis if it may be removed even when it is on, as when it is on it is like removing food from a pot that is on the fire which is forbidden.

Not temperature based:  Tzaruch Iyun due to Meigis, as if it is constantly on it is like removing food from a pot that is on the fire which is forbidden.

  • One may never remove the meat until it is fully done due to the cooking prohibition.

[1] 254/1

[2] The difference between roasting in a pot and cooking in a pot is that by cooking, water is added to the meat while by roasting no extra liquid is added, and rather it savers in its own gravy. Nevertheless regarding the slowness of the cooking, they are both similar and therefore have the same law in regards to being allowed to place it on the stove right before Shabbos.

[3] This latter part of when the meat is in a closed oven is subject to exceptions as will be explained in the next Halacha.

[4] 254/2

[5] Lit. Vacant part of the body. This refers to the chest and stomach enclave of the animal, which makes up the main part of the body in terms of mass.

[6] 254/2

[7] 254/ 2

[8] 254/ 1-2

[9] 254/1

[10] However Rambam [Hilchos Shabbos 3/13] mentions a different reason; that opening up the door of the oven will allow air to enter and harden the meat by cooling off the oven.

[11] 254/2

[12] 254/3

[13] 254/4-5

[14] Meaning since they are eaten raw, they have the same logistics as do foods that have been ½ cooked, in which we rule that they may be left on the fire Erev Shabbos without restriction.

[15] Meaning that it turns on when the temperature of the grill reaches a certain low point in temperature.

[16] As otherwise the cold wind will cause a drop in the grills temperature and cause it to turn on quicker due to one opening it.

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