Owning and benefiting from Kitniyus over Pesach, and eating Kitniyos on Shabbos after Pesach in Israel

This Halacha is an excerpt from our Sefer

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Owning and benefiting from Kitniyos?[1]

Background regarding eating:

The letter of the law:[2] Only the five grains which are 1) wheat, 2) barley; 3) rye, 4) spelt, 5) oats, can become leavened and become Chametz. All other grains/flours, such as flour made from rice or millet and all other legumes [and starches], cannot ever leaven and become Chametz. Although these flours also rise when kneaded with water, this rising is not a leavening but rather a spoiling [i.e. Sirchon]. For example, if one were to take rice flour and the like and knead it with boiling water and then cover it with a cloth until it rises like dough that has leavened, in truth, this act of rising is not leavening but rather a spoiling of the dough. The dough thus remains permitted to be eaten on Pesach.[3] From the letter of the law, it is likewise permitted to cook a dish of these legumes on Pesach.[4]

The custom:[5] The custom in these provinces [i.e. Ashkenazim] is not to eat a cooked dish of Kitniyos/legumes on Pesach, even on the last day of Yom Tov [even in the Diaspora].[6] This accustomed prohibition is a mere stringency.[7] [Nevertheless, as a result of the custom, these foods are forbidden to be eaten by all[8] Jews of Ashkenazi origin, and one may not swerve from this  custom.[9] The Maharil writes that one who goes against this custom transgresses the prohibition of Lo Sasur and is liable for death, as he has gone against a Rabbinical command.[10] The above only applies to Ashkenazi Jewry, however the majority of Sephardim never accepted such a custom upon themselves and it therefore remains permitted for a Sephardic to eat Kitniyos on Pesach and so is their custom.[11] However, there do exist Sephardic communities who likewise avoid Kitniyos, such as rice, and so is the custom of Moroccan Jewry, and the Yishuv Hayashan of Jerusalem Jewry.[12] Every person should follow the custom of his origin.[13] Those who are accustomed to eat legumes on Pesach must be careful to check the legumes for grains prior to cooking, as explained in Halacha 7C!]

 

The law regarding owning and benefiting [i.e. use as lighting oil] from Kitniyos:[14]

Benefit: Even [the Ashkenazim] were only stringent to prohibit the eating of Kitniyos, however, it is permitted to benefit from it on Pesach [i.e. sell].[15] [Thus, an Ashkenazi store owner may sell Kitniyus products on Pesach, if they are Kosher for Pesach.]

Using Kitniyus oil for lighting: Likewise, it is permitted to use Kitniyos oils for lighting candles.[16]  These candles may even be lit on the eating table.[17]

Owning: Likewise, one may even leave Kitniyos in one’s home over Pesach.[18] This applies even if the Kitniyus is mixed/cooked with water.[19] [Thus, one may store non-Chametz grains, such as rice, corn, buckwheat and the like, in his regular closets even if it is not closed off or sold for Pesach. Furthermore, one may also store Techina or Chumus that is Kosher for Pesach for Sephardim, in one’s fridge over Pesach.]

 

 

Summary:

It is permitted to own Kitniyos and benefit from it on Pesach even if it is cooked, and there is no custom to forbid doing so even according to Ashkenazi Jewry. Thus, one may light candles using Kitniyos based oils. [Likewise, one may store Techina or Chumus that is Kosher for Pesach for Sephardim, in one’s fridge over Pesach. One may also store non-Chametz grains, such as corn, buckwheat and the like, in his regular closets even if it is not closed off or sold for Pesach.]

Q&A

May one eat Kitniyos on Shabbos which follows the last day of Yom Tov in Eretz Yisrael?[20]

It is permitted to eat edible Kitniyos on Shabbos which directly follows the last day of Pesach, as occasionally occurs in Eretz Yisrael.[21] Thus, before, or even during, Chol Hamoed one may buy Chumus and Techina which are Kosher for Pesach for Sephardim and eat it that Shabbos. Regarding cooking Kitniyus on behalf of this Shabbos-See Chapter 15 Halacha 6 in Q&A!

 

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[1] Admur 453:5; Rama 453:1; Terumos Hadeshen 113

[2] Admur 453:1; Michaber 453:1; Pesachim 35a

Other opinions: The Talmud [Pesachim 35a] records the opinions of Rav Yochanan Ben Nury who holds that rice and millet are considered a grain and its leavening is actual Chametz for which one is liable for Kareis, just like the five grains. The Mishneh in Pesachim 2:5 rules that only the five grains can become Chametz, and the Gemara ibid establishes that this Mishneh does not follow the opinion of Rebbe Yochanon Ben Nury, and so is the final ruling of the Talmud, and all Rishonim and Achronim.

[3] Admur ibid; Chok Yaakov 453:4; Rambam 5:1

[4] Admur 453:3

[5] Admur 453:3; Rama 453:1 “Some Poskim prohibit it and so is the custom”; Darkei Moshe 453:2; Beis Yosef 453; Tur 453:1 in name of Yeish Osrin although concludes the custom is not like this; Terumos Hadeshen 113; Hagahos Maimanis 5:1 in name of Semak 222 and Rav Shmuel of Uroyah; Mordechai Remez 588; Peri Chadash 453:1 brings a proof for this custom from Pesachim 40b; See Kaf Hachaim 453:9-10

Other opinions: Some Poskim negate the custom of Ashkenazi Jewry, and rule it is to be nullified. [Rabbeinu Yerucham 5:3 p. 41 [brought in Beis Yosef 453] “It is a Minhag Shtus not to eat cooked Kitniyos unless they do it as a mere stringency, and I don’t know why”; Hagahos Maimanis 5:1 that Rav Yechiel and other Gedolim permitted Kitniyos; See Chasam Sofer 122 regarding a certain Ashkenazi community whose leaders permitted eating Kitniyos on Yom Tov of Pesach; Mor Uketzia 453, brought in Machazik Bracha 453:1 and Kaf Hachaim 453:10, writes his father the Chacham Tzevi protested against this custom, as it leaves people without food to eat and they end up baking a lot of Matzah of which if they are not careful, they can transgress an Issur Kareis. “Therefore, if I had the power I would abolish this custom”; See however Sheilas Yaavetz 2:146, brought in Shaareiy Teshuvah 453:1; Bashamayim Rosh 348 “It is a mistaken custom”; See Shaareiy Teshuvah ibid that some Sages desired to nullify this custom and the leaders of the generation stopped them.]

[6] The reason: The reason behind this custom is because in the later generations the population of uneducated Jews who are not expert in the laws of Issur Viheter [i.e. Kashrus] increased. Now, if they were to see people eating a cooked dish of Kitniyos on Pesach, they will mistakenly come to permit cooking [and eating] even grains [such as heat/spelt/rye/oats/barley]. The reason for this is because the entire year it is common to make legume dishes just as it is common to make grain dishes, and they will thus assume that they have an equal law regarding Pesach. For this reason, it became accustomed to forbid everything. [Admur ibid; 1st reason in Hagahos Maimanis ibid, Semak 222, Mordechai Remez 588, Beis Yosef 453; 1st reason in Chok Yaakov 453:5; Peri Chadash 453:1 based on Pesachim 40b; 1st reason in Perisha 453:3; M”B 453:6 omits this reason and states cooked legumes is forbidden due to Lo Pelug]

Other reasons mentioned in Poskim: Some Poskim write the reason behind this custom is because wheat grains tend to get mixed into Kitniyos, and hence people may come to stumble and eat Chametz grains during Pesach, when eating their Kitniyos dish. [Tur 453:1; 1st reason in Taz 453:1; 2nd reason in Chok Yaakov 453:5; 3rd reason in Hagahos Maimanis ibid and Beis Yosef 453; 1st reason in M”B 453:6] Alternatively, the reason is because it is possible to make flour/dough out of legumes and thus one may come to confuse it with Chametz flour/dough and come to allow even Chametz flour/dough. [2nd reason brought in Taz 453:1; 2nd reason in Hagahos Maimanis ibid, Semak 222, Mordechai Remez 588, Beis Yosef 453; Bach 453; 2nd reason in Perisha 453:3; 2nd reason in M”B 453:6; See also Biur Halacha 453:1 “Veyeish Osrin”]

The practical ramifications between the reasons: 1) May an Ashkenazi eat dry Kitniyos [Permitted according to reason of Admur, forbidden according to 2nd reason] 2) May an Ashkenazi eat cooked Kitniyos if it was checked for grains. [Permitted according to 1st reason, forbidden according to Admur, 3rd reason] [See Piskeiy Teshuvos 453:3 that the custom is to be stringent like all the reasons]

[7] Admur 253:5; Taz 453:1; Chok Yaakov 453:5; Tur 453:1; See Rabbeinu Yerucham ibid

[8] Beis Yosef ibid writes “Ashkenazim”; Chayeh Adam 127:1 writes it applies to all Ashkenaz and Poland; See Chasam Sofer 122 regarding a certain Ashkenazi community whose leaders permitted eating Kitniyos on Yom Tov of Pesach;

[9] Rama 453:1; Darkei Moshe ibid; Taz 453:1; Chok Yaakov 453:5; Levush 453; Bach 453; Maharil in next footnote; Chida in Shiyurei Bracha 453 and Tov Ayin ibid, brought in Shaareiy Teshuvah 453:1 and Kaf Hachaim 453:11; Chayeh Adam 127:1; See Admur 453:3-5 who uses the term “forbidden” regarding the custom, although does not write the wording of the Rama ibid.

[10] Drashos Maharil 5 Hilchos Machalos Assuros Bepesach, brought in Shaareiy Teshuvah 453:1 and Kaf Hachaim 453:11

[11] Michaber 453:1 “It is permitted to cook and eat it” Beis Yosef 453 “Only the Ashkenazim suspect for this matter”; Peri Chadash ibid; Chida in Tov Ayin 9:6; Tur 453:1 that the custom is not to prohibit Kitniyos; Rabbeinu Yerucham 5:3 p. 41 “It is a Minhag Shtus not to eat cooked Kitniyos unless they do it as a mere stringency, and I don’t know why”; Shaareiy Teshuvah 453:1 that it is similar to Takanas Rabbeinu Gershom not to marry two wives, which depends on country

[12] See Peri Chadash ibid “It is not our custom to avoid Kitniyos, with exception to rice, being that we once checked it three times and we still found a wheat kernel in it afterwards, and from that day and onwards we stopped eating rice on Pesach.” This refers to Jerusalem Jewry, of which the Peri Chadash was its Rabbinical leader. So writes also Chida in Tov Ayin ibid and Pekudas Eliezer 51, brought in Kaf Hachaim 453:10, that Jerusalem Jewry forbids rice/Kitniyos on Pesach. Kaf Hachaim ibid concludes that today Yerushalayim is made up of many communities and each group is to follow their custom.

[13] Shaareiy Teshuvah ibid; Kaf Hachaim 453:9-10

[14] Admur 453:5; Rama 453:1; Terumos Hadeshen 113

[15] Admur ibid; M”A 453:3; Terumos Hadeshen 113; Elya Raba 453:5; Chok Yosef 453:7; Chayeh Adam 127:11; Kaf Hachaim 453:34

[16] Admur ibid; Rama ibid; Terumos Hadeshen ibid

[17] Admur ibid; See M”A 453:2; Darkei Moshe 453:2

The reason: We do not suspect that perhaps some of the Kitniyus oil will fall into one’s food, as even a little bit of oil does fall into one’s food, it becomes nullified in majority. [Admur ibid; Peri Chadash 453:1; Chok Yaakov 453:6; Implication of Rama]

[18] Admur ibid; Rama ibid; Terumos Hadeshen ibid

[19] Admur ibid; See Chok Yaakov 453:8 and Kaf Hachaim 453:35 [Seemingly this ruling of Admur ibid is coming to answer their question of what the novelty is in this ruling that Kitniyos may be owned if even the five grains of Chametz may be owned if they have not contacted water]

The reason: Seemingly, regarding the laws of Baal Yiraeh and baal Yimatzeh we do not suspect that there may be a Chametz kernel which became mixed into the Kitniyos, as it is in any event less than a  Kezayis. Vetzaruch Iyun. See Chok Yaakov and Kaf Hachaim ibid

[20] So is evident from all the early and late Achronim who deal with the question of cooking foods on Shevi’i Shel Pesach for Achron Shel Pesach and do not mention it as being Muktzah. [See Chukas Hapesach 453:1; Erech Hashulchan 453:4; Machazik Bracha 467:6; Chasam Sofer 79; Rav Akiva Eiger Beitza Mareches Zayin and Shut 1:5; Halef Lecha Shlomo 343] Tzitz Hakodesh 1:35; Birchas Mayim O.C. 446; Benei Binyamon in end of Sefer; Tzitz Eliezer 14:54; See Admur 310:4; Yechaveh Daas 2:64

Other Opinions: The Minchas Yitzchak 7:33 brings that according to some opinions Kitniyos is Muktzah on the Shabbos directly following Pesach being that it was set aside by Bein Hashmashos from being eaten. See Chazon Ish 49:16; Dovev Meisharim 1:49

[21] The reason it is not Muktzah: 1) Edible Kitniyos is not Muktzah on this Shabbos, despite it being inedible during Bein Hashmashos, as it is similar to a cow which was slaughtered, that as soon as its prohibition leaves it is permitted, and only by those things which were pushed away with one’s hands and thus became Muktzah [such as candles/esrog/dried grapes] do they remain Muktzah even after their reason of Muktzah has left. [See Admur 310:4; M”B 318:8; Tzitz Hakodesh 1:35;] On other hand, however, perhaps one can say that cooked Kitniyos is Dachuiy Beyadayim. 2) An item which was Muktzah on Bein Hashmashos because of the previous day does not remain Muktzah for the rest of Shabbos. [Michaber 665:1; Tosafus Beitza 4a; Sukkah 10b; Rosh Sukkah 4:5; However, see Maharash Engel 4:92 in name of Rav Akiva Eiger; P”M O.C. 498 M”Z 2; However, see Tzitz Hakodesh ibid that all would agree here because Lo Dachinan Beyadayim.] 3) Even on Yom Tov itself Kitniyos is not Muktzah as it is edible for Sephardim, and is hence similar to wine of a Nazir. [Tzitz Hakodesh 1:35; See Admur 308:89; So is apparent from all the early and late Achronim mentioned in Minchas Yitzchak 7:33 who do not mention it as being Muktzah; See however Rav Poalim 3:30; brought in Kaf Hachaim 453:17; Minchas Yitzchak 7:33; Chazon Ish 49:16; Dovev Meisharim 1:49 who rule it is Muktzah on Yom Tov for Ashkenazim]

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