Apple Bread

Trumot (10:2) | Yisrael Bankier | 2 months ago

The tenth perek discusses mixtures of terumah and regular food, and whether they are forbidden to a non-kohen. The second Mishnah discusses dough that was leavened with crushed terumah apples. The Mishnah rules that the bread is forbidden to non-kohanim. We shall try to understand this law.

The Yerushalmi cites a beraita where R' Yossi disagrees, arguing the dough is permitted. The Gemara continues trying to understand the debate. The Gemara explains that the debate is only when the apple juice was used. If however the whole apple was used then everyone would agree that it is permitted. R' Chaim explains that in that case, only the reiach (scent) of the apple would be impacting the dough, and we rule reicha lav milta -- scent is insignificant. Why then does R' Yosi still argue in the case where a crushed apple is used? The Gemara explains that R' Yossi is consistent with his opinion in Gemara Shabbat. The Yerushalmi understands that R' Yossi argues with the Chachamim that, that if one can wrap an egg in a cloth that was heated by fire. The reason is that it is not a fully effective means of cooking. Similarly in our case too, since the crushed apple does not cause good leavening, the dough is permitted. There are several issues to address with this Gemara.

The Tosfot Chadashim asks that we learn latter (11:2) that while a non-kohen is not allowed to drink terumah apple wine, if they do, they would not be liable to pay the extra chomesh normally paid by a non-kohen that ate terumah. The reason is that the juice is not considered a mashke but rather ze'ah -- the apple's "moisture". That being the case, the use of apple juice in our case should not prohibited the dough to a non-kohen. Yet, the Yerushalmi teaches that the ruling in our Mishnah is only if the juice is used. The Tosfot Chadashim therefore suggest that perhaps the text in the Yerushalmi should be the opposite and it is only if the apple itself is used that the dough would be prohibited.

The Mishnah Rishona however maintains the text of the Yerushalmi as we have it. He explains that when the Yerushalmi explained that the debate is when the apple is juiced, it means, as explained in our Mishnah, where the apple is crushed -- perhaps in puree form -- but not as a strained juice. The (other) case where they all agree is where the apple is whole as explained above.

The Mishnah Rishona also draws another important conclusion from the Yerushalmi regarding chimutz (leavening). He explains that the issue with chimutz is not because it imparts a flavour; chimutz does not impart a discernible flavour. If it did, then we would not be able to understand why there would be any room for debate between R' Yossi and the Chachamim. The Mishnah Rishona therefore explains since chimutz affects a substancial change in the entire dough, it is considered as if it imparted a flavour.

With the explanation of the Mishnah Rishona, we can now understand the debate between R' Yossi and the Chachamim. For the dough to be forbidden to a non­-kohen in this context, the key factor is whether we defined what occurred as chimutz. According to the Chachamim, since it affected a change, regardless of the quality, the dough is prohibited. For R' Yossi however, just like with Shabbat where the definition of a melacha is dependent on the quality of the act, the quality of the leavening here is important. Since the use of apples does not affect a complete leavening, it is not defined as chimutz and the dough is permitted.


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