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brocha on farro


Rabbi Yoel Lieberman

Sivan 4, 5775
Farro is ancient grain gaining popularity today. Is it considered mezonot or adama? And what about the after brocha? (al hamichya or boreh nefashot)
ב"ה Shalom. Your question was indeed challenging since it has to do with identifying a species of grain and most of the reference material I found was not clear and inconclusive. Furthermore, I contacted people in the food industry and kosher certification who were not familiar with it. Through the assistance of a colleague I was able to see the book of Professor Zohar Amar of Bar Ilan University, who is an expert on ancient species and their contemporary commentary. In his book, (in Hebrew), "The five species of Grain" pg. 46, his identification is the farro is a species of wheat whose scientific name is triticum dicoccum which basically means that it is wheat with two grains in each spikelet. Even in the less professional literature, or if we are to follow each company how they market farro, or what is called "farro" in Italy, it is identified either as a form of wheat or one the five grains recognized by our Rabbis as rendering fit for mezonot or Hamotzi. In short , based on the above indentiifcation ,the bracha for farro if cooked is Mezonot to be followed by "Al hamichya" after eating. If it is made into flour and baked, the bracha is "hamotzi to be followed by birkat hamazon. Thank you for the opportunity for learning something new. All the best. Shabbat Shalom and Chag Same'ach.
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