- General Questions on Brachot
Does one have to wash on pickles without a bracha?
Shalom Reuven, Although the Shulchan Aruch (Or. Chaim 158) cites that one should wash netilat yadayim without a bracha on wet food (if the main liquid is water, oil, honey, milk or wine, and if it is usually eaten with the hands while wet), the Magen Avraham and Aruch HaShulchan who are more latter day poskim say that the custom of most is not to do so (a legitimate opinion in the Rishonim), and Rav Zvi Yehuda Kook used to say that the custom in Y'rushalayim, as well, is to be lenient. Nevertheless, if you do want to be machmir on the topic, as the Mishna Brura (26) suggests, he writes explicitly that pickles, which are usually eaten with one's hands, fall into that category. You also, always have the option of drying the pickles, and then, even the stringent hold that you don't need to wash. With Love of Israel, Rav Ari Shvat