Chabad rabbi competes on Food Network’s ‘Chopped’


A Chabad rabbi is one of four clergy members competing in an upcoming episode of the Food Network’s “Chopped.”

In an already taped episode that airs June 21, Rabbi Hanon Hecht, a Chabad emissary in upstate Rhinebeck, New York, appears with a monk, nun and priest, according to Lubavitch.com, the website of the Chabad Lubavitch headquarters in Brooklyn.

“I thought my participation would be a fabulous platform for raising awareness about keeping kosher in this evolving food market,” Hecht, 34, told Lubavitch.com. “Kosher presents a unique challenge that many other religions don’t face in that there are not only prohibitions on what we eat, but also on how we prepare our food. The show was very accommodating. I was very grateful and touched that they were sensitive to my needs.”

Hecht teaches about kashrut at the Culinary Institute of America and, calling himself the “Six-Minute Rabbi,” offers one-on-one short Torah classes for businesspeople in Manhattan.

“The fact that I know how to take a tremendous amount of knowledge and condense it into six minutes certainly helped” in the timed cooking competition, in which contestants have a limited amount of time to cook full meals using pre-selected ingredients, he said. “I was able to pack an hour’s worth of cooking into 30 minutes.”

It is not clear how well Hecht performed in the competition or what he cooked, as all details of the show are under wraps until it airs.