I read somewhere online (I forgot where) that one should eat multiple different types of food and make a bracha on each before hamotzi. Then, hamotzi is said and the meal is served. Is this just a minhag? Or is there actual halacha behind this?


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I was told that some Sefardi communities (Morrocans, I think) have this minhag. The reason behind it is to make sure to get to one hundred brachos, which is brought in Orach Chayim 46:3:

חייב אדם לברך בכל יום מאה ברכות לפחות:

One is obligated to bless at least one hundred blessings daily

The Mishna Berura there goes through the daily brachos and comes up with over 100. However, in regards to shabbos he says:

וביום השבת חסר לו י"ג ברכות מהמאה וכדאיתא במ"א עי"ש ע"כ יראה להשלימם במיני פירות ומגדים

And on shabbos he is missing thirteen brachos of the hundred, like the Magen Avraham says, therefore he should make them up by eating different fruits and treats

(This is also brought in the shulchan aruch itself, 290:1, however he doesn't do the math and show how many brachos are missing).

So in order to reach one hundred brachos, some people eat different foods before Hamotzi to make as many brachos as possible. (The reason why may don't do this, I've heard, is because it may constitute a "bracha sh'eina tzricha" - an unnecessary bracha, because one could make Hamotzi and then would not need to make these brachos. The Magen Avraham on Orach Chayim 46 discusses this).

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