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    Heretics without cholent – Ask the Rabbi

    Q. Why did Jews develop such an indigestible food as cholent?

    cholentA. Cholent (pronounced tsholent) is a stew that simmers overnight on Friday in order to have hot food on Shabbat.

    The word may be from the French chaud, “warm”, or Hebrew sheyalin, “that which stays overnight”.

    Though many people insist that cholent needs meat, it is quite feasible to have a tasty vegetarian cholent.

    Not everyone, however, would go as far as Rabbi Yehudah ben Barzillai of Barcelona who says in his Sefer HaIttim, “He who does not eat chamin (cholent) on Shabbat should be excommunicated. He should be removed from the community of Israel.”

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