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  1. #1
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    was this an ethical oops?

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    This weekend I brought a pie to a potluck. Apple this time, yum. Here's the problem-- my pie crust is traditional, made with lard. There was one guy there who is an observant Jew. He's not technically fully kosher, 'cause in this area it's just too difficult, but he does the best he can in this very traif city. It wasn't until I saw him eating a slice of the pie that I thought I should have warned him about the lard. Didn't say anything, as he was already eating it. But I'm wondering, should I have?

    I see pie, I assume there's lard invovled. But next time I take a pie, there will be a warning label, for sure...

  2. #2
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    This has happened to me. Since he isn't totally observant (and there is an endless variety of what people actually do or don't do when they call themselves Kosher), I would let it pass. Really, I know people who are "Kosher inside the home," but go out for Chinese food and eat shrimp. It sounds like he would understand if you told him, but I would judge what to do by what you think his reaction will be.
    It's thoughtful of you to think of this, though.
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  3. #3
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    Apr 2006
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    I agree, thoughtful of you, but I would not worry about it.
    I'm Type 1 diabetic, my mom is Ciliac - we both know darned well what is in things! I wouldn't eat a "sugar free" pie in that circumstance, because, quite often, "sugar free" means honey. My point is, if he's observant, than he knows darned well what *could* be in the pie.
    Next time, might be nice to have a little sign that says what's in it. There is a woman in my building at work who's ciliac (I have no idea who it is, though) and every work potluck we have there are now little signs on several of the dishes "no gluten, contains soy", for example. These little notes are nice and helpful.
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  4. #4
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    Unless it's a Jewish potluck, isn't it his responsibility to inquire as to what's in thing? The only time I would ever notify potluck attendees about ingredients is if something has nuts in it, which are potentially life threatening. I guess I just don't see where it's your business to worry about his religious requirements. If it was that important to him, I would think he would ask.
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  5. #5
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    Sep 2007
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    I'm generally in agreement that someone with dietary restrictions - whether religious, medical or legal (i.e. meat doctored with clenbuterol ) - is responsible for knowing what's in their food. So skhill, I don't think you did anything wrong.

    But I have to say that as someone who doesn't eat pork for purely ethical reasons - I'm perfectly well aware that any vegetable, salad, bean or beef dish is likely to be po'kified - it would never occur to me to ask about pie. I didn't even know you could buy lard in consumer quantities any more. I knew it's a theoretical possibility, but I've never known anyone who's made pie crust with lard - butter, crisco or vegetable oil is all I've seen in the last 35+ years.

    If you're in a farm community and getting your lard right from the farmer like everyone else does ... then all bets are off.
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  6. #6
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    Mar 2011
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    If he, for example, had a severe food allergy, he would have certainly asked what the ingredients were. you are not responsible for what people freely choose to put into their mouths.

  7. #7
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    I had no idea that lard is an ingredient in pie crusts.

    BTW, nuts are not the only potentially life-threatening allergen in food. For some in my family, bananas and avocados are potentially life-threatening. And then there's shellfish, which is potentially life-threatening to many people.

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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by TsPoet View Post
    I'm Type 1 diabetic, my mom is Ciliac - we both know darned well what is in things! I wouldn't eat a "sugar free" pie in that circumstance, because, quite often, "sugar free" means honey. My point is, if he's observant, than he knows darned well what *could* be in the pie.
    Next time, might be nice to have a little sign that says what's in it. There is a woman in my building at work who's ciliac (I have no idea who it is, though) and every work potluck we have there are now little signs on several of the dishes "no gluten, contains soy", for example. These little notes are nice and helpful.
    On the flip side, ever eat something that you thought was sugar-sweetened, and found out that it was really sugar-free? *raises hand sheepishly* I don't care to do that again!

    I agree about the little notes. I'm not afraid to ask, but it's nice when I don't have to.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by ny biker View Post
    I had no idea that lard is an ingredient in pie crusts.

    BTW, nuts are not the only potentially life-threatening allergen in food. For some in my family, bananas and avocados are potentially life-threatening. And then there's shellfish, which is potentially life-threatening to many people.
    It isn't in all. You can make an oil based pie crust, it's just not as flaky.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by ny biker View Post
    I had no idea that lard is an ingredient in pie crusts.

    BTW, nuts are not the only potentially life-threatening allergen in food. For some in my family, bananas and avocados are potentially life-threatening. And then there's shellfish, which is potentially life-threatening to many people.
    OK sure but let's assume that adults know how to take responsibility for what they put into their bodies... ask first then eat?
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  11. #11
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    Sep 2008
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    No, not an oops. It's his responsibility to ask if he wants to be very careful. I don't eat meat, and I always ask (or don't eat the food).

    I make pie a lot, and wouldn't have thought of lard in the crust. I've never used it, and don't know anyone who does.

    Nice of you to think about it, though.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Irulan View Post
    OK sure but let's assume that adults know how to take responsibility for what they put into their bodies... ask first then eat?
    Actually the easiest thing is to eat a full meal at home on the assumption that something on the buffet table will kill you. Otherwise you become the whiny killjoy who has to ask everyone about the ingredients in the dish they brought.

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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by OakLeaf View Post
    I didn't even know you could buy lard in consumer quantities any more. I knew it's a theoretical possibility, but I've never known anyone who's made pie crust with lard - butter, crisco or vegetable oil is all I've seen in the last 35+ years.
    Really? Stores around here all carry lard in buckets, just like this:


    That image is from Wal-Mart's site, so it's not small, rural stores carrying it, but big, urban/suburban megamarts. I know a lot of folks who make amazing pies with real lard. It's about the only type of pie crust that I don't turn my nose up at.
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  14. #14
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    Darn it, will try again. Site crashed when I put my post up. I'll write this faster!

    My boss is Jewish and takes responsibility for what he eats. If he is at a potluck especially, he views it as his job to make correct choices. As a university president, he deals with this stuff on a near-daily basis.

    We do tease him though that we appreciate him having brought beef hotdogs to our university (food service serves them at picnics, etc. instead of pork dogs). Fortunately, our next President doesn't like pork so I think we get to keep our beef hotdogs!
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  15. #15
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    Aug 2005
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    I'm with Oakleaf - I don't eat pork products for ethical reasons.

    I live in the south, but wouldn't have thought to ask about a pie crust. I also would not have been at all upset at the person who brought it. It's ethics not religion for me - but it really wouldn't bother me.

    It sucks for people who have severe food allergies. But - I couldn't want someone who is, for example, peanut allergic to eat anything I've cooked. Why? DH and I eat peanut butter and peanuts. There could be trace particles on anything out of my kitchen potentially. I don't know of any food that is completely safe for all people (and certainly not enough of them to fill a buffet table).
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