Sunday, April 3, 2011

Greek Breads and Screaming Dogs

Being a CEO for a bakery has its ups and downs. Pay day is a good day, fixing problems, mentoring the next wave, all of this if fine.

But Klecko misses baking. He loves baking but realizes those days are gone until he goes into partial retitrment.

How cool will it be to hand my resume to a small cafe owner and ask "May I please have your part time bread baking position?" LOL..

Once a month I do get to bake though, for our first Saturday of the month retail. we open our shop for 2 hours and line up 50ish different exotic breads, and the same ammount of pastry.

The place gets swinging because it's turned into an event which takes place in the middle of our production plant where we pull out portable cafe tables and folding chairs.

The vibe is totally......INDUSTRIAL CAFE

We have artists who sell their wares, a massage Nun and a keyboard player that serenades our guests.

Each month has a different theme. This month we had intended to do Japan, but after the earthquake....we felt it just might seem weird, so last minute we switched to Greek recipes.

On Friday I was Mixing doughs. I made a Kalamatta Wheat, Spinach Feta,and a million others, but my fave was a Red Wine/Golden Raisin/ Grape Leaf Sourdough. The flavors were Christlike.

When I was placing some ingredients into the Hobart 100 quart bowl I heard OSO (our morning Production Supervisor) screaming from the other side of the plant....."ROMEO....ROMEOOOOOOOO!"

This really made me smile. Each shop has its own unwritten weird customs. At my shop, people welcome you by screaming out your dogs name, in the type of a voice you'd use to guide that mutt back from a field late at night.

So when I heard OSO screaming out Sue McGleno's -Jack Russell's name, I laughed..hard, I smiled. It felt good to be back home, but better yet, it always feels better to be welcomed back right?

A couple hours later, me and CHANGA were tieing Tomato / Goat Chesse Braids and I heard Oso's brother Miseal screaming "GEOSEPPI" over and over.

Geoseppi is a Coon Hound that belongs to an Italian guy named Lorenzo. He was my right hand for several years, but he ended up kinda b**** slapping me when he left our shop.

When I heard that pooches name screamed, over and over and over. My smile reached its maximum.

I don't know if its a Polish thing, or maybe an Irish thing, but I love giving grief to my friends. The only thing I like more is when people give it back, as long as its dispenced in a voice of love.

Every production facility in the world has it's own unwritten rules, codes and form of communication, but if you are going to work at a bread plant in Saint Paul, you better have a dog, or nobody will give you a mention, and that just wouldn't be right....would it.

If you've ever worked somewhere that has its unique - dysfunctional forms of communication, shout back at us and let us know.


  1. Nice piece. Is the retail event for profit, for community relations, or for fun?

  2. Mike, all 3,plus it helps me to keep my staff grownig in experience of different techniques.Many items are sold at break even....or in case of items like dog biscuits, even a loss.
    But it brings joy into my city, I feel good about that.

  3. People eat my bread and tell me "You should go into business, I'd buy some!" But I know that a few peoples' praise won't make rent payments, and I'd miss doting on my breads, watching them rise and later brown in the oven, and dreaming my amateur baker fantasies. I call it "Baker Heaven."

  4. A great post! I can imagine that you miss baking... A wonderful enterprise.



  5. Good post and Smart Blog
    Thanks for your good information and i hope to subscribe and visit my blog Ancient Egypt and more Metallurgy, Cult and Warfare Early Iron Age in Ancient Greece thanks again admin