Q. Can one use peeled garlic cloves that are imported from China and packaged in vacuum sealed plastic bags, since the obviously stayed overnight peeled, which we avoid?
A. On question 1366 regarding leaving overnight an onion, we wrote; “The source of this Halacha is in Talmud (Nida 17a) that rules one may not eat a peeled egg, onion or garlic clove that was left overnight, because of the ruach ra’ah (spirit of impurity) which rests upon them. This applies even if it was left in a refrigerator or other sealed container. (Hakashrus 18: 11, however Rivavos Efraim 3: 495 permits a left over onion wrapped in aluminum foil)
Shevet Halevy (6: 110: 5) and others maintain that the reason of not eating the above items is not because they present today a physical danger, but rather a spiritual one based on the ruach ra’ah they posses. Tosafos (Yuma 77b) and others opine that this type of prohibitions have changed with the times. The fact that the Rambam, Tur and Shulchan Aruch omitted these prohibitions, is indeed a reflection of the change (See also: Yam Shel Shlomo Chullin 8:12, Mordechai Shabbos p. 161, Magen Avraham O.H. 173:1, Darchei Teshuva 74, Kaf Hachaim Y.D. 116:92, , Minchas Yitzchok 2:68:13, 6:74, Oz Nidberu 11:47, et. al.)
Horav Shlomo Miller’s Shlit”a opinion is that many Poskim maintain that this halacha should be observed and that is still the minhag of many today. (See also; Shulchan Aruch Harav Shemiras Haguf 7, Daas Torah 513: p. 639, Sdei Chemed Lamed klal 141:31 p. 372, Ta’amei Haminhagim (lekutim) page 497:16, Lekutei Halachos Chofetz Chaim Nida ibid. , Igros Moshe Y.D. 3:20, Be’er Moshe 3:115, Yabia Omer Y.D. 2:7, Ha’kashrus K’halacha page 243:footnote 50, Orchos Rabbeinu 1: p. 210: 16). and others.
However, one may be lenient on the amounts of skin, oil or salt needed and if they are noticeable the food is permitted. When in need, after the fact one can also be lenient.”
In this particular case, the Rov’s opinion is that one may be lenient, especially since before it was acquired, it was likely on a Gentile’s possession, and similarly to the ruach raah, applicable when touching food before washing hands with ‘neigl vaser’ after waking up in the morning, it does not apply to them.
Rabbi A. Bartfeld as advised by Horav Shlomo Miller and Horav Aharon Miller Shlit’a