Being a woman has been seen as a weakness for years. It is a badge of honor that comes with many exclusions. Personally, I have faced a lot of adversities in my life and unfortunately being a woman was one of them. In this society, women are viewed as weaker than their male counterparts and are usually placed in “easier” job profession. My whole childhood was surrounded by a fellowship of women. I grew up in a household in which my family entirely consisted of women; my mother, my grandmother, and my two sisters. I was always raised to be independent and to not feel the need to accept the opinions of others. This enabled me to create my own goals outside of what was often presented to me by worldly views. So many women have paved a way for the world in which we live in today, one that is not perfect or completely accepting of the roles that women can have in the job force but one that has greatly improved on this subject over the years. In the culinary field alone, we have so many amazing women who have made it possible to normalize the idea of a woman being in the kitchen cooking or baking on a restaurant quality scale, not simply in the confines of her family’s kitchen. Some names range from Julia Childs, Martha Stewart, Pati Jinich, and Lidia Bastianich.
Being in a profession as a pastry chef, it is a career path that is generally chosen by women. There is this unspoken assumption in the culinary and confectionery world that readily explains that culinary because it is more grueling or is often thought to require more effort is a male-dominated occupation while confectionary is for women since it requires precision, intricacy, and elegance. I do not believe in the power of gender roles as it can be too overwhelming in trying to deeply read into what society views as what is acceptable based on gender. Everyone should be able to do as they please and follow their dreams according to their own goals and dreams not directly stemming from the society’s point of gender norms.
There is a bar and bakery hybrid restaurant located in Crown Heights, Brooklyn that is centered around women empowerment. Butter & Scotch is an establishment that is own and operated by women. Though the staff isn’t all women, it does evoke a sense of female leadership as the owners of this bar/bakery are women in a profession of bartending and baking that combines the occupation of pastry arts that is more female-dominated by gender norms and the career of bartending that is more androcentric. It has all the fun of ordering a slice of cake or pie while also offering the opportunity to enjoy an alcoholic beverage to accompany the amazing selection of desserts. This one of a kind restaurant also donates one dollar from each cocktail to Planned Parenthood to benefit women’s health. It is truly a haven for the empowerment of women and to change the view of the restaurant world in terms of a woman’s place in it. So I say a toast to all the women out there, and a Happy Women’s History Month!
Welcome back to all the students of City Tech…it is truly an honor to have the opportunity to return as a blogger for Openlab’s The Buzz despite being a graduate of the college. I hope that everyone is excited to become so busy with classes, tests, and homework that you barely have time for a social life. But honestly, I hope that everyone has a successful semester and is proud of themselves for getting another semester started, getting closer to their goal of graduation. I thought a lot about what I wanted my first post to be about…what I wanted to discuss. As always, food is what motivates me, it is the one thing that I never cease to have a passion for. I cannot remember a time when I didn’t have an appreciation for food and its innovation in our world. When I write my posts, I tend to battle with myself: a debate on what is appropriate to write or discuss especially when it is personally affecting my life. I wonder if being honest about my personal struggles is helpful to others or too humiliating to put on such a public forum. The truth is, no matter who you are, we all face our own specific struggles on the day-to-day basis.
From my experience and having graduated college, it has honestly been the most difficult time for me. It is the first time in my life where academics don’t play a central role in my life. I don’t have to worry about homework assignments, midterms, finals, or attending six classes. And yet, I have no clear idea of what I want to do with my life now. A ton has occurred in my life that has forever changed me into a different person. I have dealt with loss and faced both depression as well as anxiety. I quit baking because it didn’t bring me as much joy as it once did. I wanted happiness but I felt guilty for it.
The month of January was a big turning point for me as I was able to hang out with my sister Sabrina more often without her stressful and tedious college schedule. She is my confidant, my best friend. I honestly don’t know where I would be without her. She has seen me in both my best and worst moments. I love her. She has helped to guide me through my depression as she motivated me to maintain a social life and by getting me out of the house. We were able to embark on many adventures during her break from school. One of my favorite places to go with her is Mia’s Bakery which is located not too far from the college. It has a café within a bakery where you can sit down peacefully while enjoying the amazing drinks and pastries that they offer. It has been the host place for many deep conversations that we have divulged.
The last time that we went there, we enjoyed ourselves as always: laughing, exchanging secrets, and carrying on about the current situations in our lives. I had the banana cream pie and a matcha latte…both were utterly delicious. I cannot merely put into words the richness and creaminess of the pie while the matcha perfectly offset the sweetness of the dessert. Sabrina thoroughly enjoyed her strawberry marble cheesecake and a vanilla macchiato. It is times like these that I live for…the simple togetherness of people and enjoying each other’s company.