Snakes and cakes

My oldest daughter's latest favourite TV show is Cake Boss, a TLC show about life in a bakery (don't ask why... I guess it's better than John and Kate Plus 8). On a recent episode, they were making a cake for a circus sideshow and one of the performers appeared in the bakery's kitchen with a large albino snake. It makes for good entertainment but it's a break with common sense and presumably health codes.

Reptiles should never be allowed in a kitchen, let alone a commercial kitchen (especially one that presumably prepares items often eaten by children). Contact with reptiles is a significant risk factor for salmonellosis, and cross contamination is a concern in kitchens. All pets should be kept out of food preparation areas, but particular care should be taken around high risk species like reptiles, and every reptile should be assumed to be carrying Salmonella.

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Joe - December 7, 2009 1:47 PM

Janet Clarkson, a lecturer at the School of Medicine at the Univ. of Queensland, Australia writes in her new book "Pie: A Global History" that during the 17th-century live birds and even snakes were inserted into the shell of cooled but baked pie shell to serve as entertainment at a wedding feast. These pies were called by Robert May in The Accomplish't Cook "an extraordinary pie, or a Bride Pie."

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