I understand that one can only bentch if eats a kezayis in 4 minutes does that have to be right away or at any point in the meal? If one does not eat a kezayis in 4 minutes and then eats something else does he make a brocha?

Answer:

Eating a kzayis within the prescribed time at any point in the meal will require Birchat Hamazon. However, eating other foods [other than drink to help wash down the bread or dipping the bread] may not be exempt from their own bracha until a kzayis is eaten. So ideally a kzayis should be eaten before other foods.

Sources:

Magen Avraham O:C 177:1

Igros Moshe O:C Vol. 4:41

 

Tags: brachos bread hamotzi

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3 Responses to “Amount for Birchat Hamazon”

  1. As long as he intends to eat a kezayis of bread at some point during the meal, the hamotzi will exempt the other foods, since he is, after all, sitting down to a bread meal. The kezayis may be eaten at any point during the meal, (so ruled Rav Belsky shlit”a), though it is preferable, according to some opinions, to eat it at the beginning of the meal. Plus, one needs to consider that if he doesn’t eat it at the beginning of the meal, he may become full from the other dishes, and he will be unable to eat a kezayis in the middle of the meal, and then he will be unable to say Birkas Hamazon.

    If he took longer than 4 minutes to eat a kezayis, he may still bench, according to some opinions, as long as it was 5 minutes, or 7.5 minutes (according to Chacham Ovadia zatzal), or 8 minutes (Baal HaTanya), or even 9 minutes (Chasam Sofer). However, it is preferable to add a(nother) kezayis within no more than 5 or at most 6 minutes.

    • correct, as noted this is a questionable issue, and one should certainly try to avoid it by eating a kzayis at the beginning of the meal, and it should certainly be done within 4 minutes [it usually takes about 40 seconds]

      thank you for sharing the typically insightful and novel rulings of Hagaon Rav Belsky shlit”a

  2. If he took longer than 4 minutes to eat a kezayis, he may still bench, according to some opinions, as long as it was 5 minutes (Rav Belsky shlit”a), or 7.5 minutes (according to Chacham Ovadia zatzal), or 8 minutes (Baal HaTanya), or even 9 minutes (Chasam Sofer). However, it is preferable to eat a(nother) kezayis within no more than 5 or at most 6 minutes.

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