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A person who for health reasons avoids eating fried foods. Can he make the minhag (custom) to eat a donut baked in the oven without oil on Chanuka? ​

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  • The main minhag is to eat foods made in oil, like latkes. A doughnut without oil would not have a point.
    – N.T.
    Nov 29, 2023 at 6:51
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    @N.T. if eating a baked donut helps you remember the miracle of the oil and join yourself to the broader community isn't that equally effective? (There's not that much that's being effected here.)
    – Double AA
    Nov 29, 2023 at 12:55

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R. Shlomo Zalman Auerbach has a novel interpretation of the custom to eat doughnuts (mentioned here). According to him, the point is to eat something which will entail reciting the beracha me'ein shalosh after-blessing, which references the altar in the temple, an important part of the Chanukah story.

So, if these baked doughnuts are made in a way that they would be considered pat haba'ah bekisanin, and you eat them in a non-meal context so that afterwards you recite al hamichya, one can argue that you are keeping (at least part of) the custom.

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  • Wouldn't these baked doughnuts have a bracha of ha-motzi ?
    – mbloch
    Nov 29, 2023 at 8:59
  • @mbloch They may be pat haba beikasin. Depends how much sugar and liquids other than water are in the dough. Alternatively, if they are filled with a significant amount of jelly before baking.
    – Joel K
    Nov 29, 2023 at 9:07
  • It is complicated. Some say regular sufganiot deserve hamotzi (see eg., SA OC 168:13) and that a good reason for them to be mezonot is that they are fried (see e.g., here) so remove the frying and you have even more reasons for a regular sufgania to be hamotzi. Now I understand recipes differ so we might come from different angles
    – mbloch
    Nov 29, 2023 at 11:25
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    @mbloch True. I've edited to make that point clearer
    – Joel K
    Nov 29, 2023 at 12:44
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    Are jelly donuts filled BEFORE baking?
    – rosends
    Nov 29, 2023 at 13:36

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