Not the Only One (Baking Class #1)
Last week I had my first baking class at school. Of the eight professors I emailed two weeks ahead of time, the baking professor was one of two professors not to email me back.
Within the first few minutes of class she had us each introduce ourselves to the whole class. I said my name, where I work, my major, that I have food allergies and what my food allergies are. She looked surprised and I had a feeling she didn't get my email, so I mentioned that I did email her a few weeks ago. The professor said she never got my email. Then she said that this would be good for others to learn about food allergies. She then asked if anyone else had any allergies and another girl sitting at my table raised her hand. We do not have the same food allergies, we are each allergic to different foods.
There are almost twenty of us in the class, and if one in every thirteen people have food allergies, that would be about two people per classroom. Most of my classes have about twenty to maybe thirty students, so the fact that I am not the only one with a food allergy in at least this one class is reasonable.
In the lab kitchen we will be working in partners. I am hoping to be partnered with someone different each week, so I will get to work with all my classmates and gain as much experience as possible. I think working with all the people in my class will not only teach me how others handle food allergies, but teach them how I handle my food allergies.
At the end of the first class I let my professor know that I am okay with working with my allergens. I told her I work in bakery with nuts and I have been fine. I also told my professor that I may wear more gloves and wash my hands a lot more than everyone else. I then said that I may not eat everything and that I will bring my epi-pens with me into the kitchen. The professor said this was okay and if the recipe calls for my allergens I may not have to put them in.
I am very thankful that the professor was so nice about it, but I really wish she had gotten my email from two weeks earlier. I think it would have prevented her being so surprised about my food allergies, but at least this way now the whole class is aware. It was also nice to know that I am not the only one in the class with food allergies.
We did not do any baking in the kitchen during the first class. The next class we will be baking in the kitchen making pancakes and waffles. Look for a new post coming next week to read about my first experience baking in the school kitchen.