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Being Jewish in today's age isn't always easy. But despite Facebook, Twitter and tons of text messages, many Jews are retaining the practices of their ancestors. The porous nature of many surfaces can absorb the flavors of other, non-kosher foods. The way that these foods were absorbed is also the way that they must be removed. For example, a pot must be kashered with boiling water, and a stove by using external heat sources to make it glow. Keeping kosher is not only a mitzvah, but it will lead to better general health for you, and your family.
1. Oven: This requires absolute cleaning. Don't use the oven for a day before kashering. Use a cleanser to remove dirt, and remove all of the interior parts of the oven. Clean them, and reassemble them. Broil the oven at the highest temperature possible for an hour. Food shouldn't be placed on the broiler tray. Instead use aluminum foil. To remove any excess dirt, you can apply direct heat to the oven's interior. On the gas range: disassemble and clean completely with steel wool, soap, and water. Reassemble. Keep milk dishes and meat dishes separate by waiting at least a day in between preparation, or using a small toaster oven for one or the other.
2. Silverware: Clean your silverware, unless it has wooden handles 'then it cannot be kashered. Wait 24 hours and drop each piece of silverware into boiling water. Larger utensils can also be kashered, but it may have to be done one side at a time.
3. Pots and Pans: Boiling water is good for kashering these items. Handles should be removed, if they are dirty. Some frying pans are too difficult to kasher, because direct heat is required. Usually the best way to do this is with a blowtorch. If this is too difficult, just buy new ones.
4. Sink: Pour boiling water onto every inch of the sink. Porcelain sinks cannot be kashered. You may want to buy separate tubs for the eventual separation of meat and dairy.
5. Counters: The above procedure works well for granite and the like, but if your countertops are porous, then they must be sanded down and then kashered.
6. Dishes: China, porcelain, and pyrex can only be kashered by being placed in a kiln at 900 F for a minute, or by sustaining one whole cycle in a self cleaning oven. Valuable china may be kashered if you speak to your rabbi and ask him about dipping it in boiling water 3 times.
7. Glassware: By soaking in lukewarm water for 72 hours, glasses can be kashered. Change the water every 24 hours.
8. Refrigerator: Clean it thoroughly with soap and water.
9. Mikvah: After kashering, your utensils must be dipped into a Mikvah pool, if it was not done after you first purchased them.
By following these tips, you will be on your way to having a kosher home.
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