Hidur Mitzva/Mehadrin

Almost all mitzvot may be enhanced by:
  • Making them beautiful (hidur mitzva), or
  • Observing non-required stringencies (mehadrin).
Hidur Mitzva
Examples
  • Women baking challa for Shabbat and Jewish festivals (and separating challa as a remembrance of the challa that was given to the priests/cohanim in the Temple).
  • Wearing especially nice clothes and eating special foods on Shabbat and Jewish festivals.
  • Using beautiful fragrances, tastes, textures, colors, and artistry in serving God.
Beautiful
Examples
  • Shabbat/Jewish festival table (set with beautiful challa cover, silver, kiddush cups).
  • Havdala set and pleasant-smelling spices for havdala.
  • Sukka and putting your finest things in it.
  • Etrog/etrog case.
  • Shofar.
  • Seder plate, matza holder, and matza cover.
  • Illuminated hagadas (hagadot) and megilas (megilot).
  • Chanuka candle-holder (menora, chanukiya).
  • Torah scroll written with a fine pen and beautiful script and wrapped in beautiful silks.
  • Mezuza covers.
  • Ketuba.
  • Wimple (to wrap baby in prior to brit mila; then donated to hold the two parts of the Torah together).
  • Elijah's Chair/Kisei Eliyahu.
  • Synagogues.
  • Chuppa.
Mehadrin
Examples
  • Chalav Yisrael--When consuming milk and milk products, eating or drinking only those items whose production was supervised by religious Jews;
  • Pat Yisrael—When eating bread, only eating bread baked by Jews (not necessarily by religious Jews);
  • Glatt meat—When eating meat, eating only meat that had no lesions on the animal's lungs;
  • Lighting more than one Chanuka candle each night (beginning on the 2nd night) and having more than one person in each house light their own candles.
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