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Is it better to eat raisin bran cereal that is Pas Yisroel, than to eat another brand of the same cereal that is not?

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2 Answers 2

Grain products need "tzuras hapas" to qualify for the takanah of pas yisrael

Cereal doesn't have "tzuras hapas" - it doesn't look like a baked food (like bread, pretzels, or bagels.)

Likewise, most poskim write that Bran Flakes do not have tzuras hapas; the same would apply to Cheerios.

The Source of the above quote also quotes Rashi on Menachot 75b


So, it's actually impossible to have a "Pas Yisrael" raisin bran, since bran flakes don't qualify for the takanah in the first place.

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3  
Must be a marketing term like glatt kosher pizza. –  Yitzchak Aug 27 at 19:38
    
1) "Cereal doesn't have 'tzuras hapas'" - most cereal's don't. Some are baked into bread and then ground up (e.g. grape nuts). 2) An assertion that cereal is not 'tzuras hapas' but pretzels are would work a lot better with a reason to distinguish them. –  Yishai Aug 27 at 20:12
    
@Yishai but if the original intention of baking that bread is to grind it up into cereal, it could be that pas yisrael still doesn't apply. e.g. does anyone hold that one must make hamotzi on grape nuts? –  Jake Aug 27 at 20:17
    
@Jake, It could be, but that is an ambiguity missing from the answer, IMO. A vague, hard to justify distinction + ludishe chillukim about intention when baking the bread seem to add up to a reason to justify the Pas Yisroel preference, whether or not is required al pi din. –  Yishai Aug 27 at 20:25

Acc to the Ramma in yo'd siman 112 siff 6 kichel are included in the category of pas as far as pas yisroel goes. The shach in s.k. 18 points out that that is only true if they are made drom a thick dough and have tzuras hapas, the chochmas adam explains that if they are made from a thin dough they fall under the domain of bishul akum which is actually more stringent, i.e. there is no heter of pas palter.

This is an explicit example, but its a general law that if the law of pas doesn't apply, then the law of bishul does. So either it needs to be pas yistoel as a chumra, or bishul yisroel as ikur din. Depending on what the mixure was like raw. Of course whether or not cereal is oleh al shulch milachim would weigh in to possibly exempt this food from all regulations.

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"whether or not cereal is oleh al shulch milachim" - How do you know that kings (and queens) didn't or don't now eat cereal? Wouldn't oatmeal be considered cereal? I can't say if farina qualifies as cereal, though - baby food, maybe... –  DanF Aug 28 at 3:36
    
@DanF How do you know is a good question on this subject. See in Yoreh Deah siman 112 taz siff kattan 3 in the name of the tur that we assume rice bread is not olah al shulchan milachim due the its lack of chashivus and we don't inquire into it, we just assume. But I didn't imply in my answer that cereal is not olah. I left the idea open. –  user6591 Aug 28 at 3:46
    
@DanF The requirement for bishul yisrael isn't that kings and queens eat it. The requirement is that the food is important enough to be served at a king's table. Prince William might enjoy a bowl of cheerios in his kitchen, but if he's hosting foreign dignitaries for a breakfast meeting, he's not going to serve them cheerios. Anyway, it's dubious at best to suggest that the kichel example (anything that doesn't qualify as pas is automatically bishul) applies to all food. –  Jake Aug 28 at 5:35

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