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The following article is reprinted with permission from Kashrus Kurrents, Pesach, 1998 .© Copyright 1998 Orthodox Jewish Council, Vaad Hakashrus


When Kashering an oven through the means of libbun kal Why do we first thoroughly clean the oven with Easy_Off oven cleaner before Kashering? Wouldn't libbun kal be enough without cleaning?

Kashering an oven with libbun kal by setting the oven to broil for forty minutes only removes the "bliyeh" - absorbed Chometz in the walls and grates. To effectively burn off actual Chometz residue, the oven would have to be left on high heat for many hours to make sure all residue would incinerate. At the low temperature of 550oF, this would be an impractical met hod of Kashering. Instead, we clean first and then burn out the cleaned oven chamber to expedite the Kashering.

Is there a difference between Kashering the grates and the oven walls?

No, there isn't any difference in the Kashering procedures. However, if Chometz were normally placed directly on the grates, the grates would need to be Kashered with libbun gamur. 

When Kashering a Chometz pot for Pesach using hagola... Why does one throw a hot rock into the boiling water instead of a cold rock?

In order for the water to Kasher the rim of the pot, the water that the hot rock displaces must be boiling as it cascades over the top of the pot. A cold rock will cool the water rendering the Kashering process ineffective.

Can anything be thrown into the water other than a hot rock?

Yes, any object can be used if the following criteria are met:

  1. The object must be Kosher for Passover
  2. It must be able to be heated
  3. The object must be large and heavy enough so that when thrown into the water the water will boil and rise over the top of the pot.
Is there any other way to Kasher the pot other than throwing a rock or a metal object into the boiling water?

For consumer Kashering, the method of choice should be the hot rock into the boiling water method. Another option is to fill a large Kosher for Pesach pot with water, let the water reach a rolling boil and immerse the smaller pot into the larger one. A third option is to use a blow torch; however, a Kashering expert should be consulted before using a blow torch. 

Is there any practical method to Kasher sheet pans?

There is no practical way for consumer Kashering of sheet pans. They must be heated to a glow and will probably buckle. 

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