Well, first of all, anyone with minimal knowledge of kashrut, Jewish kosher food laws, knows that we are forbidden to eat bugs. That means that if you find bugs, especially in the plural, in your food, or a food you're about to cook, you have to check if there are more, and if the number just keeps growing, throw it out.
On Friday, as I was getting ready for Shabbat, I pulled out the nice, green leafy lettuce my husband had bought. In the package, it looked nice and fresh. It had impressive "Hechsharim," seals of rabbinic approval, and instructions to rinse, just to be safe. I put the leaves in a large bowl, and as soon as the first drops of water hit, I could see fully formed creatures, bugs swimming happily. That was even before I had added my usual salt to chase the more stubborn ones from their hiding places.
A couple of simple rinses later, I realized that there was no way this lettuce was going to be clean enough to eat. I wasn't going to waste anymore precious water or my limited time. We had lots of other salad vegetables in the fridge, and the kuzbara my husband bought was completely clean of bugs. So I trashed the lettuce.
The quantity and variety of bugs of all "ages" made it clear that this lettuce was not for us. It wasn't even about the store's storage conditions, since the leaves were very fresh and pretty.
Contrary to what was printed on the label, the growing process did not prevent bug infestation. It takes longer for the bugs to grow to full adult size than it takes for leaves to wilt and go soggy and disgusting.
Personally, I prefer as much as possible for my fruits and vegetables to be seasonal. Citrus is for winter for example. And also are leafy and flowery vegetables, such as lettuce, cauliflower and broccoli. I can easily live another six months without lettuce. And I think it's actually sinful to waste our precious limited water on cleaning the leaves.
|עלי בודק Alei Bodek|
Green grown specially to prevent bug infestation, sic