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Whipping Up Kosher

Chany Rosengarten

Many women perceive a need and sigh, wishing someone would meet it. And then there are those who go out and create solutions. Gittelle Steinfeld, inventor of a world of products designed to support a kosher kitchen, is one of them.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

buttonsIt all began when Eli and Eitan Steinfeld wanted to help in the kitchen. “Would one of you please get me a fleishig pan?” their mother, Gittelle asked. They looked at her, clueless, and Gittelle realized that if her children had no way of identifying whether the kitchenware was milchig or fleishig, she couldn’t allow them free reign in the kitchen. In her kitchen, she decided, everything from wooden spoons to pots and pans would be labeled.

Ending Kashrus Confusion

While many of us would be content with a piece of red or yellow electric tape, Gittelle was looking for something ergonomic, durable, and instantly recognizable. And so she designed Kosher CoinsTM, red, green, and blue buttons that attach to kitchenware and help prevent clueless husbands from cutting pastrami with the cheese knife. With the bright red Kosher Coin proclaiming meat, buttery hands know to keep away.

The coins were received with enthusiasm. Mashgichim took notice and requested them for nursing homes and hospitals, and even requested commercial baking sheets, edged in red, blue, or green, to help them see instantly if directives are being followed.

There were, of courses, the naysayers. “Don’t you think my kitchen is kosher? I know my pots and knives, and on which counter they belong,” some women said, offended at the idea of kashrus confusion. Gittelle explained that while the balabusta knows her kitchen inside out, a visiting guest, married kids, and even the innocent husband might not. “Is it fair to hold a husband accountable for not knowing that the pareve knife has a slightly wider handle than its dairy partner?” Gittelle asks. Even the “don’t come into my kitchen unless you want to complement or thank me, and even then do it at the doorway” balabustas could be helped by owning a set of Kosher Coin®s.

Gittelle went on to launch a line of products known as the Kosher Confusion Enders, which includes color-coded pans, spoons, spatulas, sponges, tongs, trivets, and even aprons.

“It’s always in answer to a need, a void,” Gittelle says of her innovations. “My products are an answer to a question I perceived at a celebration, event, or at home.” Take the Mazal Tov ice-cube tray, for example. While ice-cube trays have been around for a while, nobody gave the Jewish consumer much though. Gittelle did. She designed ice-cube trays that convert into chocolate molds as well, with Jewish themes. She even has a frog mold for the Pesach Plague, giving Seder night an added spice. 

 

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