culinary competitions

Discussion in 'Professional Chefs' started by nattychef, Jul 11, 2004.

  1. nattychef

    nattychef

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    :chef: what are your opions of competitions,as an apprentice it was a requirement of my chef. once my current employer found out, they began to push me into shows in hopes of boasting their reputations. Having some luck, my employer now expects more and more medals for their organization.how do you see competitions and or this situation?
     
  2. kuan

    kuan Moderator Staff Member

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    Competitions are good in that it makes you think a lot about fundamentals of food. Many kids are surprised when they're so called creation falls flat at the critique table. You learn a lot of things. Good mise en place, leadership if you're in the team event, how to deal with culinary emergencies, what plating techniques are effective, balance, all that good stuff. Although you may not use these specific techniques in your everyday job, the key principles will help you become a better cook.

    The bad thing is that you're competing in a very narrow segment and in a world largely unknown to the public. People don't even know the categories. You're restricted to a certain method of cooking and a certain type of food. Good luck finding a wok setup in any one of these competition booths.

    Go for it if your boss allows you. It's character building.
     
  3. campchef

    campchef

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    Competitions are becoming more and more valuable in the cooking world. They require you to think on your feet with whatever is available and whatever you brought (including a wok setup if you need it). I see more judges looking at mis, cleanliness, frugalness (using all of the product), and following the planned menu. Things we should all do everyday.
    I say enjoy the competitions, meet and learn from your competitiors and judges, and you will ave some wonderful memories and lasting friends.
     
  4. rickh

    rickh

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    Ok, I watched one woman on food network talk about entering more and more competitions... Is there a site that many of the post at or such? I know I can search google but I dont find much in the line of upcoming events as much as ones that are done.
     
  5. kuan

    kuan Moderator Staff Member

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    Most of the competitions that count are sanctioned by the ACF. These are the ones which count toward certification. Contact them.
     
  6. shroomgirl

    shroomgirl

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    I learn alot by watching ACF competitions.....you can tell who practiced and who didn't. The finese amoung the older multi medal winners is amazing.....they bring duct tape and tape the prep tables together, tape disposable towels and they have the routine coreographed, including when to wipe down the tables.
    Alot of competition food is shtuff I would never order, it is fussy. But I've stood and watched for hours to see different techniques/short cuts.
    I also get the biggest kick out of guys cooking scallops for a beef contest....just amazes me....hello? anyone home? :rolleyes:
     
  7. campchef

    campchef

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    Your best bet is the ACF page: www.acfchefs.org
    You are in a prime competition area. The Texes Chefs Assoc of the ACF are very active in competitions and judging. Get to a comp and just watch, or volunteer to be a second or clean up crew. Just being around these chefs is a blast!
     
  8. crazychef826

    crazychef826

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    The Crazychef is going to Orlando! I won the AFC Pasta LaBella competition, and am heading out tomorrow. I will compete against three others at the 2004 ACF National convention. Contest are both good for your employer and yourself. The thing is, remember the "code" take what you know and teach others. You will find that the more you show your stuff, the more your co-workers will single you out for most of their questions. Teach them, because as the old saying goes, "You can't take it with you." And if your winning a lot of competitions then your employer will support you, if you don't feel that support then find someone who will. I'm sure the job offers are falling from the sky for you, as I have found many of my employee through competitions. Take care and best of luck.

    The Crazychef