Seven weeks ago, we reported on the turmoil at Bon Appétit. Current and former employees went public with stories of marginalization, a toxic work culture, tokenization, and unequal pay. After two high-profile resignations, the magazine and its parent company Condé Nast vowed to change. Condé Nast CEO Roger Lynch committed to fostering "a diverse, inclusive and equitable workplace” at BA. Interim BA editor in chief Amanda Shapiro wrote that she demanded change from corporate leadership, and promised to address cultural bias in the Test Kitchen. BA is also undertaking a recipe audit to address problems of “authorship, appropriation, the white gaze, and erasure.”
That’s what’s been said publicly. Today, we investigate what that change looks like from the inside, with the help of six people from Bon Appétit, all of whom asked not to be named for fear of retaliation. Condé Nast also responds to some of our questions.
Among the things that have happened in the last seven weeks: Matt Hunziker, a video editor who staffers of color saw as an ally, was suspended. Our sources tell us that people of color are being offered much less for video contracts than their white counterparts. Our sources also describe a culture of intimidation at the company.
In addition to the specific responses to our questions, Condé Nast provided us with this statement:
"We’ve taken seriously the issues raised by our BA team and immediately engaged an independent third party to address these matters. Reflecting our diversity and inclusion values, we believe in taking direct actions to confront all forms of racism, in society and within our company. We are always striving to do better but it’s only through a diversity of backgrounds, views and cultures that we can do our work to the highest of standards of which we are holding ourselves and the industry at-large accountable. New leadership at BA, reflecting these values, will be announced soon."
We published this episode Monday morning, August 3rd. On Thursday, three stars of the BA Test Kitchen— Priya Krishna, Rick Martinez, and Sohla El-Waylly—announced that they would no longer be participating in videos for Bon Appétit.
Interstitial music in this episode by Black Label Music:
- "Brute Force" by Lance Conrad
- "Talk to Me Now (Instrumental)" by Agasthi Jayatilaka
- "Iced Coffee" by Josh Leininger
- "Stacks" by Afrokeys
- "Hang Tight" by Hayley Briasco
- "Rooftop Instrumental" by Erick Anderson
Photo courtesy of u/imnofox.
Dan Pashman: I just got an email from [BLEEP]. I had asked for some kind of a statement like, can you speak publicly, can you go on the record, to say something about what’s going on at Bon Appetit. And the response is , "Not right now."
Andres O’Hara: So nothing.
Dan Pashman: Andres, who have you talked to?
Andres O’Hara: So I talked to [BLEEP]. They definitely were not going to talk on the record.
Dan Pashman: Emma, who have you talked to?
Emma Morgenstern: So, so far, I've been talking with [BLEEP], but I've also heard back from [BEEP].
Dan Pashman: This is Sporkful producers Emma Morgenstern and Andres O’Hara, with me, during a production meeting for this episode. They’ll be riding shotgun with me throughout. This is an update on our show about the recent reckoning at Bon Appetit. We know there’s a lot going on behind the scenes there right now. The reason for those bleeps? We can’t share who we’ve been talking to, because no one would talk to us on the record. Weeks ago, when this story broke, people from BA talked to us, they tweeted, they posted on Instagram. So what’s changed? Today on the show, we’re gonna find out.
Dan Pashman: This is The Sporkful, It’s not for foodies it’s for eaters. I’m Dan Pashman.
Andres O’Hara: I’m Sporkful producer Andres O’Hara.
Emma Morgenstern: And I’m Senior producer Emma Morgenstern. Each week on our show we obsess about food to learn more about people.
CLIP (SOHLA EL-WAYLLY): I’ve experienced some of the highest highs of my life this week. When Adam resigned, when Duckor resigned. Just like, I finally felt like I wasn’t screaming in the wind anymore. So I feel like finally things might change.
Dan Pashman: That’s Bon Appetit Test Kitchen star Sohla El-Waylly on this show, 7 weeks ago. In the wake of allegations about systemic racism at Bon Appetit, and the resignations of two top execs, Sohla felt some hope that people of color there could negotiate for pay equity and more diversity in hiring and content. Today on the show, we’re taking you back inside BA to find out what’s happened since. Because this kind of reckoning is happening in a lot of workplaces right now.
Dan Pashman: So we wanna know, how are Bon Appetit and its parent company Conde Nast dealing with all this turmoil? What’s involved in trying to fix big systemic issues? You know, Sohla and her colleagues speaking out...that was incredibly courageous. But now comes the part after the headline-grabbing scandal, when people have to make real change. Those in power have to act. This part is even harder. And that’s why we’ve chosen to focus on it today.
Emma Morgenstern: We’ll tell you everything we’ve been able to find out about what’s happening at the legendary food magazine and hugely popular YouTube channel. You’ll recall that Bon Appetit came under fire in early June when a photo of the editor-in-chief in brownface surfaced. That led people of color there to speak out about long-standing issues: white people getting the best opportunities. Black and Brown people being used to show how “diverse” the staff is while being paid less for similar work.
Andres O’Hara: Following those revelations, editor in chief Adam Rapoport and video boss Matt Duckor resigned. We go into much more detail about all of that in our episode “A Reckoning at Bon Appetit”. You don’t need to listen before you hear this, but it’ll provide important context.
Dan Pashman: For this episode, we reached out to 17 people who currently work for Bon Appetit as employees or contributors, including all of the Test Kitchen YouTube stars, as well as editorial, production, and support staff. Six people agreed to talk to us, though all of them requested not to be named for fear of retaliation, or because of ongoing negotiations with the company. No one agreed to be interviewed on tape.
Andres O’Hara: We also requested interviews with Conde Nast executives multiple times and went back and forth with them for over a month about doing an interview. In the end, spokespeople for the company provided answers to some of our questions, which you’ll hear throughout this episode. They also shared a statement, which we’ll post on Sporkful.com. But they declined to do a taped interview.
Dan Pashman: We’ll divide what’s happening at BA into three categories: there’s the editorial side -- that’s the magazine, website, social media, and recipes. Then there’s the video side. That’s actually run by a separate part of Conde Nast called Conde Nast Entertainment. And there’s the corporate level -- the actions being taken by the execs who oversee all of it. We’ll get to corporate and video later. First, let’s focus on editorial.
Emma Morgenstern: Right, so on the editorial side, we’re going to talk about some of the progress they’re making. A few weeks ago, Conde Nast CEO Roger Lynch spoke about diversity during the company’s presentation at the NewFronts, a conference where digital media companies pitch their content to potential advertisers.
CLIP (ROGER LYNCH): We’re doubling down on work we’ve already been doing to build a culture that prioritizes diversity and inclusion. Thirty percent of our workforce today in the U.S. includes people of color, and we’re committed to growing that percentage at all levels.
Andres O’Hara: Lynch also said the company started a global diversity and inclusion council last year and that they’re planning to hire a global chief diversity and inclusion officer, who can help with equitable representation in all their content.
CLIP (ROGER LYNCH): First up is change at Bon Appetit. We’ve taken quick action to transform that brand, and as we welcome a new EIC soon, we will be coming back to present to you a new vision for everything.”
Emma Morgenstern: BA is still in the process of hiring a new editor-in-chief. Amanda Shapiro, the interim Editor in Chief, told The New York Times that she’s pressed the company to hire a person of color for the role. According to multiple BA staffers, the current editors put together a list of candidates for the top job and they submitted it to Conde Nast. A Conde Nast spokesperson declined to comment on whether they’ve committed to hiring the editor from that list, but said input from the staff is being heard.
Dan Pashman: BA staffers themselves are also working to make their pool of freelancers more diverse. In the meantime, an internal working group of BA staffers is already starting to make changes to the content. And these changes are what we want to take a minute to focus on right now.
Dan Pashman: In late June, research director Joey Hernandez wrote a letter from the editor, posted to the BA website and sent out as an email newsletter. In it he announced that BA is initiating a recipe audit. Emma’s been looking into what’s happening on that front, so she’ll take it from here.
Emma Morgenstern: So I want to start off by saying that we had booked an interview with one of the BA folks, who’s working on the recipe audit, so we could hear more about it. But just a couple of hours before we were set to record, our guest was forced to cancel. So while we couldn’t get anyone to talk to us on the record, we saw that Joey Hernandez, who wrote that newsletter about the recipe audit, He was on the podcast Salt + Spine. He explained that the BA staff will go through previously published recipes and articles to make sure they’ve been thoroughly fact-checked and read for cultural sensitivity.
CLIP (JOEY HERNANDEZ): We all really care about changing food media while we have the chance. You know? This has really been a galvanizing situation and there are a lot of us on staff, who want more than anything to improve and also regain the trust of the food community.
Emma Morgenstern: Joey says some of the changes involved in the recipe audit are pretty straightforward.
CLIP (JOEY HERNANDEZ): Are we just addressing something because an ingredient, let’s say the makrut lime, might have had a racist name in the past and we’re just fixing that in the ingredient list? That’s a kind of easy fix for a lot of these recipes.
Emma Morgenstern: Makrut lime leaves are sometimes referred to with a different word starting with a K. That word is a racial slur. So BA is swapping in the term “makrut” lime leaves in all its recipes. But other issues don’t have a quick fix. BA has a history of featuring white chefs talking about bastardized versions of dishes from other cultures. Joey is Filipino-American. He recalls that before he worked for BA, he was shocked to see the magazine’s recipe for the filipino dessert Halo Halo, with gummy bears in it. That definitely is not in the traditional ingredient list. So to explain why that might be an issue, we reached out to Professor Krishnendu Ray, chair of the food studies department at NYU. Cause I know some people hear that and think, "Sure, the recipe’s not traditional but what’s wrong with innovation?"
CLIP (KRISHNENDU RAY): My first response is there’s nothing wrong with it. What’s wrong with it is that the unevenness of our attitude. That we are much more attentive or conservative, say if it's French cuisine, if it's Italian regional cuisine, and we seem to be almost cavalier about foods from other parts of the world. I think the basic criticism is, put in a little more effort, be a little more attentive, and of course learn the basics of a tradition, and then innovate.
Emma Morgenstern: Joey and his colleagues are also trying to address BA’s history of presenting white chefs as experts on cuisines associated with people of color. Like the time they had a white chef show people how to eat phở. No one’s saying a white person can’t cook Vietnamese food. And no one’s saying a white chef can’t cook phở, if they’ve really learned the cuisine. But getting featured by Bon Appetit is a big opportunity. Their YouTube channel has turned their editors into minor celebrities. None of those people were famous before. Professor Ray says that these opportunities should go to the people who know a cuisine best.
CLIP (KRISHNENDU RAY): Why go to people who have just been tourists and travelers in a culture, and not hire people in those communities to talk about those cuisines? The problem becomes, if you’re talking about Nigerian food, and you’re talking about Indian food, and the only people you talk to are white Americans who go there and then come back.
Emma Morgenstern: The recipe audit is also a chance to beef up head notes, or intros for recipes. They’ll try to give more credit to a dish’s sources. For instance: The white chef Alison Roman had a recipe in BA for something the magazine called “flaky bread,” with no reference to the culture or cuisine that inspired it. It was presented as if it was her idea. Recently the recipe was edited to say that it’s based on a Yemeni bread called maluwuh. Joey told Salt + Spine that after they announced the recipe audit, some people had concerns:
CLIP (JOEY HERNANDEZ): I’ve gotten a lot of pushback from some subscribers, who worried that we’re just going to be deleting things. And I want to be clear that that’s not my goal at all. My goal is to recontextualize these recipes. To keep them up but to also show our work and show the changes. I think a lot of that is determining the kind of editor’s note that we want to leave on those pages. Is it a more robust headnote, where if it’s a white writer we go back to them and ask them their inspiration for the recipe and credit those sources? And, you know, credit those sources.
Emma Morgenstern: Joey says the staff is trying to have a consistent policy for handling each type of issue. And when you take a step back, all this ties into the other issues that folks at BA are trying to address. A lot of it boils down to both white chefs and the white audience being given priority. Being treated as if they’re more important. That reinforces a perception that people of color are not part of Bon Appetit’s desired audience, and by extension not part of the American mainstream. Joey says staffers at BA are determined to work through these issues.
CLIP (JOEY HERNANDEZ): Food is still literally our lifeblood. And people have such a deep love for it. But I think that not everybody has the vocabulary, right? And I'm especially am not always going to be correct, but I want to meet people where they are and then push us forward. I’m not interested in litigating past mistakes and assigning blame. I just want to get the record right. The readers certainly, the brand and the company wants us to be rah rah positive again, and that’s going to take some time. But like, we do have to lay down this foundation of work. So hopefully, followers and fans and readers will trust us to do right by them. And we hope that we can show that we care and that there are a core team of us who are really trying to dismantle the toxic structures that have been put in place.
Dan Pashman: So that’s the editorial side. Now let’s take a look at what’s happening at the corporate level, across editorial and video. In a statement, Conde Nast CEO Roger Lynch said the company is, “investigating all claims of pay inequities and inappropriate workplace behavior.” A Conde Nast spokesperson confirms that the company has hired the law firm Proskauer Rose to do an investigation. Andres has been looking into that process, since he worked at New York Public Radio when they also hired Proskauer, to do an investigation about harassment there. So Andres, what can we expect from that process?
Andres O’Hara: Well, bringing in outside firms to assess what’s happened in a troubled workplace and make recommendations, that’s become a pretty standard move for companies facing public scrutiny. And Proskauer has been the go-to firm in many recent cases. They’ve done investigations at other media companies like NBC, CBS, and as you said Dan, New York Public Radio.
Dan Pashman: Yeah, I also worked there, but I had left by the time the investigation happened. So why don’t you tell folks about it.
Andres O’Hara: A lot of NYPR staffers thought the Proskauer investigation was not as thorough as it could have been. The final report said that there was no evidence of systemic harassment. It recommended some new policies, but it did not fault senior management. And look, there’s a lot I could say about that time there, but I think it’s better to hear from some of the reporters who covered this issue. Here’s WNYC reporters Ilya Maritz and Jessica Gould, talking about the Proskauer investigation on WNYC’s All Things Considered back in 2017:
CLIP (ILYA MARITZ): While the lawyers say that they interviewed 36 people at NYPR, quite a few of the key people who witnessed or experienced harassment were not interviewed or even approached.
CLIP (JESSICA GOULD): It’s worth noting that firms tend to represent one side or the other, managers or employees, because of the ethics around conflicts of interest. And Proskauer tends to represent employers. I talked to a lawyer who represents employees, and she says that it’s important to recognize that these investigations aren't the same as, for example, journalistic investigations. The firms are hired to serve the client. So recently, the board of the Metropolitan Ppera hired Proskauer to investigate claims of abuse by the conductor James Levine. According to The New York Times, it found evidence of abuse but, similar to this case, it backed up how the leadership at the Met had handled the situation.
Andres O’Hara: A Conde Nast spokesperson told us that their Proskauer investigation is confidential because it’s meant to protect everybody involved. And they described Proskauer as a neutral third party. But Conde Nast is the client here, so they set the parameters for the investigation. And they’ll decide what part of the findings, if any, will be made public. Proskauer Rose did not respond to our request for comment.
Dan Pashman: One Bon Appetit staffer, who was interviewed by Proskauer, tells us that it felt like the interviews were more about mounting a defense for Conde Nast, rather than helping the company make changes. I’m told some of these interviews have been scheduled at the last minute, sometimes in the evening, which left little time to prepare.
Dan Pashman: Multiple people at BA also tell us they see this as part of a larger effort to intimidate them. They say the company has made it clear, they’re watching what people are saying. Rachel Premack, the reporter from Business Insider who has broken much of the news about Bon Appetit, she's heard similar stories from people she’s spoken with.
Rachel Premack: They have also received sort of like threatening emails like, "Oh you better delete that," or "We saw that you tweeted that." Like it’s a company that speaking out is very harshly censored. People who work there are pretty scared.
Dan Pashman: A lot of this fear comes from the suspension of video editor Matt Hunziker. On June 25th, Conde Nast suspended Hunziker, citing, “concerns raised about Matt that the company is obligated to investigate.” No further details were provided, and the company declined to comment about it to us. Hunziker, who’s white, has not spoken publicly about the suspension and did not respond to our requests for comment. So we want to be clear, we don’t know why he was suspended. But we can tell you how his suspension is being perceived by the people at Bon Appetit we talked to. And several of them tell us they view this suspension as retribution for Hunziker’s social media posts about Conde Nast.
Rachel Premack: So Matt had tweeted, or Hunzi as he’s called, he had tweeted in support of his coworkers, who were not white. He was tweeting vague jokes about how racism in media is very strong.
Dan Pashman: Rachel, can you read a couple of the tweets that Matt Hunziker posted before he was suspended?
Rachel Premack: Right, so these were all posted in June. He wrote, “Finally completing the transformation to fully becoming my mother by yelling, 'I brought you into this world, I can take you out!' at the BA YouTube channel.” And then the next tweet: “Why would we hire someone who's not racist, when we can simply (check industry handbook), hire a racist and provide them with anti-racism training...” And according to his co-workers, that led to his suspension. Conde Nast said there were internal concerns about him as an employee. They have not specified what those internal concerns are.
Andres O’Hara: One person from the BA Test Kitchen, who spoke with us calls the suspension, “nefarious.” On the day Hunziker was suspended, several BA staffers and contributors, including people of color, posted messages of support for him on social media. They even started a hashtag, #standwithhunzi. Then that evening, there was a mandatory all staff meeting at 7pm. It was announced just 30 minutes in advance. Anna Wintour, the editor-in-chief of Vogue and “Global Content Advisor” for Conde Nast was in attendance.
Dan Pashman: Multiple sources confirm that in this meeting, people were called out by name for supporting Matt Hunziker on social media and told to take down their posts.
Emma Morgenstern: But some posts are still there. Contributor Priya Krishna still has a tweet up from that day that says, “BA video editor Matt Hunziker was suspended by Condé for calling out systemic racism, while the company says it supports people speaking openly. Got it.”
Andres O’Hara: Editor Carla Lalli Music also still has a tweet up from that day, that says, “I know it’s hard for certain big companies to multitask, but you can’t promise transparency and muzzle people like Matt Hunziker at the same time.” Seconds later she added a second tweet to the thread that says, “Posted fearfully, unfortunately.”
Dan Pashman: Hunziker’s suspension was one of the reasons many people cited for not talking with us on the record. They feel intimidated. And this culture of fear at Conde Nast is the backdrop for ongoing negotiations between the company and people of color seeking pay equity. Coming up, we’ll update you on those negotiations. Stick around.
Dan Pashman: Welcome back to The Sporkful, I’m Dan Pashman. Cara Nicoletti is a fourth generation butcher, but the first woman in the family to do the job.
CLIP (CARA NICOLETTI): I have a lot of very early meat memories. I sometimes think like is someone were to crack my brain open and look at them they'd be like, "What the hell is going on here."
Dan Pashman: As Cara tells me in last week’s episode, her grandfather didn’t want her to go into the business. But she did it anyway, and spent 10 years developing a type of sausages that none of her ancestors could have imagined. When it came time to start selling them on her own, it took a woman entrepreneur to tell her, “You’re not thinking big enough.” Now, when she and her female business partners roll into meetings…
CLIP (CARA NICOLETTI): The guys will sort of laugh at us at first and sort of me like, "Okay, whatever little girls." But then we start talking and they kind of like test you and start throwing questions your way. And once you can answer them all, they respect you maybe even more.
Dan Pashman: Hear Cara’s story in our recent episode, "This Butcher Wants You To Eat Less Meat". It’s up now where you got this one. Please take a minute to follow our show. If you listen in Apple Podcasts, click subscribe. Go ahead, you can do it right now while you’re listening. Thanks.
Dan Pashman: Okay, back to Bon Appetit, and I’m joined once again by Sporkful producers Andres O’Hara and Emma Morgenstern…
Emma Morgenstern: Hey.
Andres O'Hara: Hey Dan.
Dan Pashman: We’ve covered what’s going on with the editorial side, and with various investigations. Now let’s turn to the video side, and the BA Test Kitchen YouTube channel. With six million subscribers, it’s Conde Nast’s biggest channel, and a key source of revenue for Bon Appetit, especially in an era of declining magazine sales. They used to post a couple videos to the channel every week. But they haven’t posted at all since June 5th, right before Rapoport and Duckor’s resignations.
Andres O'Hara: That’s because some of the people of color are in active negotiations with the company. As we reported in our last episode, the white stars of the BA Test Kitchen videos have lucrative contracts from Conde Nast Entertainment, or CNE. The people of color who appear in these videos mostly do not. In spite of that, their presence is used to make the Test Kitchen look diverse and that diversity is a big part of why people like these videos.
Dan Pashman: So correcting that pay inequity is the first demand in these negotiations. But people at BA are also demanding that the company commit to more diversity in hiring and content. Until both demands are met, those who host and produce the videos are refusing to make more videos.
Emma Morgenstern: All these issues were top of mind at that recent NewFronts conference:
CLIP (REGGIE WILLIAMS): When we talk about transformation, I would be remiss if I didn’t take a moment to talk about the elephant in the…kitchen, Bon Appetit.
Emma Morgenstern: This is Reggie Williams, who joined Conde Nast Entertainment as SVP of programming last fall. He talked about increasing diversity in BA’s videos:
CLIP (REGGIE WILLIAMS): Systemic racism is ubiquitous and there’s a need for sweeping change. Conde Nast was ahead of that curve when they hired me, a black man with decades of experience creating diverse and inclusive programming, to help lead that charge from within. I came in with eyes wide open about what our brands have represented over the years, both the good and the bad.
Emma Morgenstern: So the company says it's committed to increasing diversity in hiring and content. But as Business Insider’s Rachel Premack said in our last episode on this subject, BA staffers have heard these promises before, and it hasn't happened. Now, according to multiple sources, Conde Nast has told the people of color from the Test Kitchen that the company is actively interviewing new people of color. Conde Nast tells us these people are being considered for new roles in the Test Kitchen. But given the fear that many at BA are feeling right now, several people told us it felt like a threat, that the company could replace them.
Dan Pashman: As for the issue of pay inequity, multiple sources tell us that many of the white hosts have shared their contract details with the people of color. White host Molly Baz said so publicly. So the people of color know what the white folks are making, and Conde Nast knows that they know. Still, our sources say that Condé Nast continues to offer people of color from the test kitchen much less than their white counterparts make. It’s difficult to say exactly how much less, because contracts vary even among white hosts. But we’re told at least one person of color from the test kitchen was offered less than half of the average for the white hosts.
Dan Pashman: While Conde Nast would not confirm details of the negotiations, they acknowledged to us that in general, yeah, some people from the test kitchen are paid more than others. And they say with good reason. Some hosts do better with the YouTube algorithm, they get more clicks, so they generate more revenue. Conde says it’s not about race. Those people are just more popular, so they get paid more. On the other hand, the white hosts became popular because BA featured them in the first place. That's what Sohla told us in our last episode on this topic.
CLIP (SOHLA EL_WAYLLY): They have this like circular logic that the people they choose to put in a show and give a lucrative contract to are the people who have a lot of followers. But the people who ended up with a lot of followers are the people who got the show. You know what I mean? They never gave us a chance.
Dan Pashman: It’s worth adding that the choice to feature mostly white people in videos is not haphazard. According to Rachel Premack, CNE has long had a system in place called a scale check. Before any video gets greenlit, a small group of people look at past data to determine whether it’ll be a hit, whether it’ll scale. Conde CEO Roger Lynch addressed this system in a meeting. Business Insider got a tape of it. He said, “If they're using historical data to project future outcomes and the historical data has racist or prejudicial influences in it, then you only get that outcome going forward.”
Dan Pashman: So where do things stand as of now? Well, the Conde Nast spokespeople told us that the company expects to come to an agreement in the negotiations, and that they’re trying to provide as much transparency as possible. But one of the people of color involved tells me they feel like the company is behaving, “like a cartoon villain.” Several people at Bon Appetit tell us that, because of the way negotiations are going, there’s a real possibility that a core group of Test Kitchen stars will leave the company.
Dan Pashman: Whatever happens with the negotiations, one thing’s for sure: We all know much more about Bon Appetit’s inner workings than we did before. Which leads us to one final question, where does the BA Test Kitchen go from here?
Rachel Premack: The Test Kitchen...my feeling is sort of that it’s like the sum is greater than the parts.
Dan Pashman: Here again is reporter Rachel Premack.
Rachel Premack: You very rarely see a video where it's just one of them. Like it’s always them interacting with each other. So if they all left and all went to one place, or if they all left and all formed their own publication, or their own YouTube channel, or…
Dan Pashman: I also just wonder, knowing what we know of what was going on behind the scenes there for so long, even if they all come back, can it ever be the same?
Rachel Premack: Yeah, I agree with you there.
Dan Pashman: The happy loving family. The racially diverse cool upscale hipsters, that turns out to have been kind of a mirage, and now we all know it. So if they go back to that routine it’s going to be hard for it to ring true.
Rachel Premack: Right, I agree with you. I think for a lot of BA fans the curtain’s kind of been pulled. I think they want to see the Test Kitchen come back but there’s definitely a feeling of lost innocence.
Dan Pashman: As for Sohla, 7 weeks ago I asked her, if you could make a video about anything, what video would you make?
CLIP (SOHLA EL-WAYLLY): I feel like I need to a full proper chocolate tempering video.
Dan Pashman: And, it turns out, she did it. This past Thursday, a video of Sohla tempering chocolate was posted on YouTube:
CLIP (PERSON): Now, I'm terrified of tempering chocolate. I think most people are but you are very very good at it.
CLIP (SOHLA EL-WAYLLY): Nothing to be scared of. Totally, easy.
CLIP (PERSON): Alright.
CLIP (SOHLA EL-WAYLLY): We're gonna crush it.
Dan Pashman: But it was on the YouTube channel of a competitor, Binging with Babish. And it seems to have found an audience. It has over a million views, and counting...
CLIP (PERSON): Sohla, you've done amazing work here. Shall we show the world?
CLIP (SOHLA EL-WAYLLY): I think we... yeah.
CLIP (PERSON): Let's do it together.
CLIP (SOHLA EL-WAYLLY): It's time. Alright.
CLIP (PERSON): Dun dun dun.
CLIP (SOHLA EL-WAYLLY): Wow, wow, wow...
Dan Pashman: One late breaking update: Friday afternoon as we were finalizing this episode, Conde Nast Entertainment announced they have a new president, Agnes Chu, who comes over from Disney. She replaces Oren Katzeff, another Conde Nast exec who’s come under fire for offensive jokes about people of color and women, including more than one rape joke. He’s also been one of the key people pushing the metrics-based approach to video production that has prioritized white people in videos. Rachel Premack reports that Katzeff will remain at Conde Nast, but the company has not commented on what his new role will be.
Dan Pashman: If you liked this episode please check out our others, including last week’s show with Cara Nicoletti. She’s a fourth generation butcher, but as the first woman in the lineage, she’s doing things a little differently. And while you’re scrolling through our feed, if you listen in Spotify, click follow. If you listen in Apple podcasts, hit subscribe. That helps other people discover our show, and makes sure you don't miss future episodes. You can do it now, thanks. Finally, please connect with me on instagram, you can see what I’m cooking and eating, my kids make occasional appearances. And we just got a dog! Her name is Sasha. I suspect she will be featured soon. You can follow me on instagram, @TheSporkful.