Waiting Six Hours

An interesting Halacha is learned from the case of the שלו, quails. The Torah describes how the people were punished for asking for meat.

The Pasuk then says, והבשר עודנו בין השיניים, and the meat was still between their teeth. This was followed by their ultimate punishment.

There is an argument among the Rishonim as to why we wait six hours between meat and milk. One opinion is that we wait six hours because it takes that amount of time for the food to be removed from our teeth, as learned from the above Pasuk.

The other reason is that it takes six hours for food to be digested. The practical difference is in a case where a mother chews meat for her baby to soften food. According to the opinion regarding digesting food, the mother would not be “Fleishig or בשרי”, but according to the opinion about food between the teeth, she would need to wait six hours.