Advice? First day in the kitchen

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by pacific one, Jan 19, 2005.

  1. pacific one

    pacific one

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    Any advice for a first timer?
    I feel confident and would just like to get a heads up.
    What should I bring? (knives, apron, etc)
    Any advice is greatly appreciated.
     
  2. thetincook

    thetincook

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    Line Cook
    Yup, knives are a must. Also look at the head gear everyone else was wearing when you interviewed. One the first day of a job, I once wore the big white poofy type of hat got horribly laughed at. Nowdays, I were a black commis style skull cap. It's modest and and looks really good.

    Also you must remember the too most importent words in the english language...


    YES CHEF!!! :D


    Other things you should add to your knife roll:
    An extra peeler or three!
    A good easy to use wine key.
    Extra Pens
    Extra Sharpee markers for labeling. (Costco has the best deal on these!)
    A small note book that you can keep with for notes and preplists.


    Always carry yourself and perform your tasks with a purpose and confidence even if you dont feel confident. Perform with energy and entusism (I always make this mistake)

    TYPE a prep list for your par stock and EVERYTHING you need on your station. You will need to run three checks onyour shift. Once at the start to find out what you have and what you need, check off the stuff as soon as it is completed and stored properly, and once right before service.

    You live and die by your mis en place.

    Lay out your station so you can access everything with the least number of moves.

    Make friends with the prep cooks!

    Be loud if you need to be.

    Good Luck and Good Cooking :chef:
     
  3. chrose

    chrose

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    A good pair of kitchen shoes! Steel toes will always be appreciated when hot liquids and or knives drop. Also cushioned as standing for long periods can really take their toll! Good luck and have fun!
     
  4. zolushka

    zolushka

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    Dear Pacific One,

    you recieved some excellent advice already. However, I would add one thing - make sure you ask questions (hopefully intelligent ones :) ), especially if you don't understand or don't know how to do something. It's better to have someone explain a second time, than fumble and make mistakes.

    If you feel comfortable, ask the chef or whoever you are working with what this particular job will end up as, i.e. in which dish this 5 lbs. of vegetable brunoise will show up. This way you will feel good about dishes coming off the line, because you contributed to them. Also, you will have shown your interest to learn.

    Make sure you are always willing to do any task that is asked of you. And remember - cleaning up is part of cooking, so don't shun it.

    Hope this helps and good luck!
     
  5. coolj

    coolj

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    If someone asks you to go find the bacon stretcher or a left handed paring knife, don't. But seriously you've already received a lot of great advice. pay attention to your surroundings and you'll be fine.
     
  6. anneke

    anneke

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    There are the newbies that ask the impertinent questions to prove something. Don't be one of them. Then there are the newbies that lack initiative and would rather leave their dirty rags on my desk because they they're to uninterested to ask me where they're supposed to go. Don't be that guy either. The guys that I like in my kitchen pay close attention to the dynamics of the crew; they step in where they can, and if they can't, they make the effort to find out later how they could have helped. Be proactive, take lots of notes, so that your chef doesn't have to repeat the same information to you twenty times. Organise your activities and your time. Make sure you always know what your next task is going to be, so that you don't dwell on what you are currently doing. Don't make any assumptions. If your boss is vague about a procedure, just explain to him what you plan to do and how, and make sure s/he okays it.

    If you follow the basic rules of common sense, you'll do just fine. Coming to ChefTalk was a great first step! Welcome Pacific One!
     
  7. pacific one

    pacific one

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    Thanks everyone for the advice, I really appreciate all of it.
    I got through the first day, enjoyed myself and i'd just like to say the chef was impressed, he asked "Are you sure you've never worked in a kitchen before?" and i said "no, I just got some really good advice from people in the industry."
    Thanks everyone. The Pacificone :cool:
     
  8. suzanne

    suzanne

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    Pacific One -- there's nothing I can add to the great advice you already got. I just wanted to say Welcome! and keep asking all the questions you want. We're happy to help.