Difference between chef, pastry chef and baker

Discussion in 'General Culinary School Discussions' started by magpie, Jun 22, 2005.

  1. magpie

    magpie

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    So I was wondering what exactly is the difference in working conditions (pay, co-workers, hours, stress, etc.) between a chef, pastry chef and a baker. I have worked in a kitchen before so I am somewhat familar with what that is like, but have never worked with a pastry chef or a baker (I am in the process of looking for part time bakery work though). I would imagine that a baker would probably have earlier hours, have less co-workers to worry about, and possibly have a more monotonous work day than a regular chef...am I right? Can anyone give me kind of a run-down of each career? Thanks for any help!! :eek:
     
  2. 100folds

    100folds

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    Well, I've done all three. I was an executive chef, a pastry chef and a baker. All for equal amounts of time. As a chef, there was more paper work than on line cooking; meaning that you spent a lot of time telling people to get to work, on the phone with distributers and at the computer doing cost reports, food cost, labor costs, ect. Pretty lonely at the top but it's nice to be the boss.
    As a baker, I worked early mornings, by myself. I was running for 5 hours and walking fast for another 5 hours. You don't have time to stop and talk or relax and you tend to get a little anti social. Maybe it's the hours but I didn't like the change in myself, so I became a pastry chef.
    Now pastry chef rocks. It's a creative work and great training in managing people. Your station is seperate from the rest of the kitchen, you write your own menus and you usually have two or three people working under you. You have to be mentally organized and be able to deligate tasks. So in essence, it's like a happy medium between the two worlds.
    I hope that answers your questions. ;)
    Happy cooking
     
  3. magpie

    magpie

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    Thanks 100folds for the help. Anyone else have anything to add? :eek: