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Q: What bracha does one recite on Melba toast? Is it considered part of the issur of pas paltar or can one eat it even if he insists on pas Yisroel?
A: There is a difference of opinion between contemporary Poskim whether the proper bracha for Melba toast is hamotzi (since it is baked as bread before it is toasted) or mezonos (since the bread is baked with the specific intention of converting it to Melba toast). Rav Schwartz’s opinion is that the first approach is correct, and the bracha is hamotzi.
Even those who hold that the bracha is mezonos agree that hamotzi should be recited if one eats sufficient quantities of Melba toast and/or uses them for a meal. The term “pas” as relates to pas Yisroel (and many other halachos) includes items upon which one sometimes or always recites hamotzi, and therefore Melba toast qualifies as pas according to both of the aforementioned opinions. Accordingly, one who is particular to only eat pas Yisroel (year-round or during Aseres yimei teshuvah), should not eat pas paltar Melba toast.
The only exception would be if there is no comparable pas Yisroel Melba toast available, for in that case even those who do not eat pas paltar are permitted to do so (see Shulchan Aruch YD 112:5). [This is a general rule regarding pas paltar and is not specific to Melba toast.]