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Discussion in 'Professional Chefs' started by ashwen, Sep 30, 2013.
Hi i would like to know from the professional chef where do you start
I started out washing pots and making cold salads---
Are you thinking of becoming a chef?
Yup, washing dishes.
The oldtime classic way was to start as a pot washer in the pastry shop or department
I was 13, washing dishes. Moved to washing dishes and cutting vegetables, at 14 a cook didnt show( go figure, payday) and all of a sudden I was cooking.
Most people work their way up the ladder in the kitchen especially if you know from an early age that you want to start cooking. I got a lucky break and was working as a cater waiter when the kitchen asked if any of us would want to work in the kitchen. I immediately said yes and was able to work there for 2 years. Best job til this date. I got to learn all the basics before attending culinary school and had a fantastic executive and sous chef to answer any questions I have. A lot of the times when a chef knows that you're interested in growing in the field, they're willing to help you out and give you advice.
I've never been a "dish-washer" ... but I've also never been in a kitchen where I didn't wash dishes. My first paying job in an eating establishment was as a bar-back. It paid great and I got to schmooze w/ lots of intoxicated women. I got put in the kitchen after they all got tired of me complaining about the food. That was in 1971-ish; whenever I was in the 4th-grade.
I came into the culinary world behind a woman! =D I was 15and her Dad owned a knock off hooters kind of place. I started washing dishes! (Can't cook in the pot like a pro without gaining a little appreciation for the pot the old fashioned way!!!!) I knew cooking was my passion and I worked my way through the line while I put myself through culinary school. Left there as a kitchen manager and graduated school. I madethe stupid mistake of thinking because I graduated culinary school that made me a chef...LOL I went down town to a place and for the first time I was in a Kitchen with areal chef so I thought to myself if he's the chef than what am I??? That's when Chef Pierre handed me a potato and I got some good old fashioned appreciation for my vegetables again. It's all been a great blur since then (17 years later)
I was burned out after 12 straight quarters in architecture school and decided to change my major but I wasn't sure what to change it to so I took a break from school and took a job washing dishes for the interim. 40 years later, i am still in the industry and still washing dishes but my title has changed a bit.