NOTE: I apologize in advance to any Devout Jewish people I may inadvertently offend with this post. I know next to nothing about being Kosher except from preparing the food for 2 weeks. I'm 87.4% sure that none of you will find this blog, but you never can be too careful. So sorry! And shalom...or something. : )
Hi, peeps!! Sorry for that disclaimer above. I just wanted to cover my bases cause I'm about to complain. Ready?
*clears throat* KOSHERIZING AN ENTIRE KITCHEN AND BAKERY FOR 200 PEOPLE AND KEEPING IT THAT WAY FOR 2 WEEKS IS A PAIN IN THE BUTT!!!! ESPECIALLY WHEN YOU KNOW NEXT TO NOTHING ABOUT WHAT YOU'RE DOING!!!
Whew. Glad I got that out of my system.
So, basically, there was a group of 200 who we know was coming months ago. We were prepared. Or so we thought. Preparations involved scrubbing every single surface and sanitizing, buying new equipment and labeling it correctly, keeping red and blue items separate ( I'll explain that in a sec), designating areas in the fridge and freezer for kosher, and finding somewhere else to prepare food for the OTHER groups who are at the resort at the same time.
So, red and blue. Basically, those who keep Kosher don't eat meat with dairy. At all. Which means every meal was either a "meat plate" or a "dairy plate". Red for meat, blue for dairy. So when preparing a meal for a meat plate, no dairy products can be used and all red-designated equipment must be used. Here's a few pics to illustrate:
Red-taped tongs, spatulas, and whisks
for meat plate
Blue on the left, red on the right.
The fridge. It's Kosher.
Oh, and we had to line the shelves
with foil. Mm. Good fun. : )
So there were some visuals for ya. Awesome, right? Uh huh. So, once something has been kosherized, it is designated meat or dairy and stays that way for the duration. No switching around. BAD. Yellow was used for things that are neutral, like flour, sugar, oats, nuts, etc. You can use a yellow item for meat or dairy, but once it's used for one or the other, it stays that way. However, you can "kosherize" something and re-designate it by steaming the piece of equipment for 15 minutes, boiling it for 3 minutes, and then letting it air-dry. Dunno why, but them's the breaks. Oh, and NO equipment with wooden handles. Not allowed.
Oh, and after the cleaning and taping things and stuff? Yeah. It had to be okay'd by the Rabbi. We got a certificate and everything. Whoop. And he hung around for a while every day just to check up on us. He also helped himself to whatever food he could find, mostly without permission. Definitely has a sweet tooth. Lucky us.
So, this went on for 2 whole weeks. And then we were DONE!! YAY!!! But then we had to put things back to normal and some of the new equipment for kosher got packed away for next time. NEXT TIME!! I really really REALLY hope I'm not here for that. Gah.
Well, that was my little spiel. Lovely, I know. Now lets NEVER speak of it again. Mmkay?