Recipe’s Frozen In Place

, , , , , , , | Working | November 14, 2017

(I work with my sister at a vegan bakery. It’s her first job. It is January, so typically cold. I show up the first day before sunrise and it is freezing inside — literally. The building is separate from the main restaurant.)

Me: “Why is it so cold?”

Sister: “Oh, the owner doesn’t have heat installed in here. Don’t worry; it kind of warms up after a few hours when we turn the oven on.”

(Later, I start to mix a recipe with a spoon.)

Sister: “Oh, no, if the owner comes back here and sees that, we get in trouble. We have to use our bare hands.”

Me: “Seriously? Bare hands? And it’s all freezing?”

Sister: “Yeah, otherwise we get yelled at and she starts coming back here a lot more to check.”

(Another day the owner came back and hurriedly LOCKED US IN. There were bars on the window; we literally couldn’t get out if there was a fire. She did this for several days because, as we found out later, the health inspector was around and she didn’t want him to know that building was in use. It’s really hard to find a baking job, so my little sister begged me not to say anything. I got my revenge quite unintentionally. On one of my last few days, it was so cold I wore my longest coat. I got so many glares from the owner and the staff in the actual kitchen, all family members, and I couldn’t figure out why. Then I realized: they are all Hindu. My coat? A calf-length white LEATHER trench coat. Oops. Shortly after I moved on, my sister gave up as well. She made new recipes for things like their tea cookies, following all vegan guidelines, but they were rejected because, “They didn’t taste vegan,” “They weren’t hard enough,” and, “No one would believe they were vegan.” After she left, someone sued because the cookies were so hard they broke a tooth.)

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