Kashrut is the division of Jewish law dealing with foods that are acceptable (Kosher) according to the divine dictates of the Authentic Testament (ADKA [Also Deceptively Known As] The Old Testament; "old" suggests decrepit) These laws determine which food types are acceptable and the manner in which they must or may be prepared.
Kosher More Than Food Actually, the word Kosher describes any ritual object or procedure that accords with Jewish law and is fit for ritual use. These ritual objects, procedures and foods are not blessed in order to make them Kosher, they are Kosher simply by conforming to the Divine Laws of the Authentic Testament; they are blessed because they are Kosher.
Blessings To be sure, Jews make many dozens of blessings every day; over every meal and snack; when inspired by marvels of nature which by the way includes the wonder of being able to evacuate our body’s waste; when participating in daily prayer services and when performing the many daily Divinely ordained commandments. But blessing the food has nothing to do with making it Kosher. In fact Kosher does not even require a rabbi's participation. The fruit or vegetables from your garden are kosher (but not the bugs lurking inside them). A rabbi merely provides the knowledge so that the foods and processes will comply to the standards of Kosher. Kosher Style Kosher is not a style of cooking; Chinese, Indian, Jamaican and Arab food styles can all be kosher if prepared in accordance with the laws of Kosher. On the other hand, many traditional Jewish foods like bagels, matzah ball soup, blintzes etc. may very well be non-kosher. Do not be deceived by foods and establishments advertising themselves as Kosher when in fact they only providing Kosher Style Food.
Food that is not Kosher is commonly referred to as treif (lit. torn; from the Divine warning not to eat animals that have been attacked and torn.)
Kosher - Allegiance Kashrut is not a set of primitive health regulations. Although some of the laws do relate to health, and health is a vital component of the Kashrut system, this is not the reason we have Divinely Inspired Laws of Kosher. We maintain the Laws of Kosher because it is our pledge of allegiance to Gd. We follow Gd’s commandments because we love Gd and are loyal to Gd. When Gd instructs us to act, we do so with a great sense of loyalty and pride.
Kosher - Utensils Not only are foods and their manner of preparation guided by the laws of Kashrut but pots, pans, ovens, toasters, dishes, and cutlery may become non-Kosher where non-K foods are cooked and/or served in or with these utensils. So in the Kosher kitchen there are Kosher pots and pans, cutlery and crockery and all manner of peripherals and in non-Kosher kitchens the same items are defined as non-Kosher. In general, utensils used with non-kosher food may not be used with kosher food.
Kosher - Foods Certain animals may not be eaten at all. This restriction includes the flesh, organs, eggs and milk of the forbidden animals. Cows, sheep, goats, deer, chicken and fish with fins and scales are examples of Kosher species.
The mammals and birds that are Kosher must be dispatched in accordance with Jewish law.
Blood must be extracted from the meat through salting or grilling (broiling) before being cooked.
Even following Kosher slaughter, certain parts may not be eaten.
Bugs and worms are not kosher. Fruits and vegetables suspected of being infested must be thoroughly inspected and cleaned otherwise all fruit and veg are Kosher.
Meat & Milk The flesh of birds and mammals may not be eaten with dairy products. Utensils used for meat cannot be used with dairy and vice versa. The Yiddish words “fleishik” (meat), “milchik” (dairy) and “parve” (neutral) are used to describe food or utensils that fall into one of those categories.
Fish, eggs, fruits, vegetables and grains can be eaten with either meat or dairy. Some do not eat combinations of fish and meat.
Wine, grape juice, breads, cheese and some cooked foods, require partial or full Jewish participation in their production.