Inspectors found filthy equipment at a Hialeah bakery and a Cao Bakery near Kendall

Dirty equipment, equipment not sanitized even after being cleaned and poor handwashing were among the violations seen as West Miami-Dade and Hialeah retail bakeries failed inspection.

Both a Cao Bakery and Hialeah’s Los Tres Conejitos Bakery came up short (and filthy) during Wednesday drop-ins by Florida Department of Agriculture inspectors. The Ag Department doesn’t inspect restaurants — that’s the Department of Business and Professional Regulation — but it checks all types of grocery stores, bakeries, packaged food sellers, food processing, storage and distribution facilities.

‘Black, mold-like grime’ and other Cao issues

Here are some of the problems Inspector Catalina Ordonez found at the Cao Bakery near Kendall, 9753 SW 72nd St.

In the kitchen and food service areas, “Food employees did not wash their hands between entering and exiting the food preparation area and handling food items and utensils.”

Had they washed their hands at the handwash sinks in those areas, they’d have been left with damp hands. Neither sink had paper towels.

The food service area employees “did not change their single-use gloves between changing tasks, entering and exiting the area.”

The food service area’s ice machine’s scoop was “in direct contact with ice cubes inside the ice machine.” Considering the dirty hands that might’ve touched the scoop, that’s a violation.

But, worse, that ice machine had “black, mold-like grime encrusted on the ice-making portion and interior housing.” A Stop-Use Order took the ice machine out of action.

A violation common to cafe servers from Weston to Florida City: “The wooden knock board used to knock out spent coffee from the coffee porta filter was stored inside the trash can with coffee grounds and visible trash.”

Almost as common as the prior violation: “Heavy, dried-on milk accumulated on steam wand that was in use more than four hours without being cleaned.”

Also going beyond four hours without being washed, rinsed and sanitized was the tongs used for meat pastelitos and empanadas.

The coffee spoons rested in standing water that measured 68 degrees. If you’re going to store spoons in water, it needs to be at least 135 degrees.

A slicer on a kitchen prep table displayed “old food residue on the plate, blade guard and meat grip.”

In the food service area, no time mark was on spinach empanadas, meat empanadas, ham croquetas, meat pastelitos, guava and cheese tequenos and pastelitos, ham and cheese pastelitos and beef empanadas.

Stop Sales dropped on all of that.

Stop Sale Orders: Meat pastelitos, cheese pastelitos, meat empanadas not time marked, possibly too old.

Stop-Use Orders: The ice machine for its “unsanitary equipment.” The inspection says the ice machine “must remain turned off and empty until released by an inspector.”

Proper cleanup needed at Los Tres Conejitos

Inspector Simeon Carrero handled the once-over at Los Tres Conejitos Bakery, 1912 W. 60th St. in Hialeah.

Carrero saw, in the food service area, “several employees handling money, touching their shirts and proceeding to work with open food without washing their hands.”

Also, they were “using the same gloves to perform different tasks.”

In the backroom processing area (not much was as it should be there) and food service areas, “no wearing proper hair restraint all hair hanging out of cap on side and back.”

In the same areas, “several employee handwash sinks were without paper towels.”

The only thing that can be in front of a handwash sink is air. To wash your hands at the backroom processing area handwash sink, you needed to lean over a trash can. Violation.

In also the same area, “old dry residue is on all the bakery bread processing equipment.”

Still in the backroom processing area, employees were either in a hurry or unclear on the whole concept behind the three-compartment sink — wash, rinse, sanitize — because Inspector Carrero saw an employee “washing, rinsing and skipping the sanitation process with pots and pans.”

Several establishments get dinged for toxic material on a shelf or near food products, but rare is the place that has “toxic material (WD-40 ) on top of a processing table” as Los Conejitos did in the backroom processing area.

“Several containers of food were stored directly” on the backroom processing area’s floors.

Backroom processing area had “several cutting boards soiled” and “can no longer be effectively clean and sanitized.”

Also, the “cooking and baking equipment has encrusted grease deposits or soil accumulation.”

There were “dusty ceiling tiles and A/C vents over processing areas, including the three-compartment sink” as well as “old, dry residue on door handles, underneath processing tables and shelves.”

A “soiled door, walls, ceiling tiles, floors, walk-in cooler shelf, A/C units and metal racks where foods are stored throughout the establishment.”

Stop Sale Orders: None.

Stop Use Orders: None.