I could use some advice from some other chefs currently in the business, please

Joined Jun 1, 2010
I'm sure you've heard the story before.

I was the guy who started in kitchens as a kid.  Prepping, busting suds, pantry ---climbing my way up the ladder.  Once I had some skills, I bounced around like a mercenary from joint to joint as a line cook until I landed a Sous Chef gig.

Under a wing, I built my skills, and some 10 years later, I ended up an Executive Chef.

Well, years ago, I left the trade to persue other things, and had some kids.

Now, the job market's a bitch, and I think it's time to throw the apron back on.  Unfortunately, I'm living in a different state, so I'm out of my old network.

With the kids now, I really can't imagining myself doing the restaurant chef gig---with the late nights and the long hours.

I almost have all of my college credits, so the other day, I stumbled upon the idea of perhaps getting an associates Pastry Chef degree.  I figured it'd round me out as a chef, and perhaps open some new jobs.  (I can do some pastry work, but my strengths are rustic mediterreanian and regional american cuisine.)

So, waste of time?  Perhaps other culinary work?

So, I thought I'd ask you cats, any suggestions?  I just like hearing different suggestions and points of view if you care to leave them.


Joined Jun 2, 2010
I've met a few people who have rounded themselves out with pastry classes, and some found it to be very beneficial, while others thought it was a waste of time. If you think you are really going to use it in your career, then go for it. I'm not sure where you are located, but if there is a high density of restaurants, maybe a breakfast/lunch shift would be more suitable for your schedule needs. Of course that may not pay the pills all the way...
Joined Feb 10, 2010
I don't know what kind of networks you have locally to your home.  I'd be looking for a relatively easy gig, close to my kids schools that may not pay that well, but that allows me to supplement my income.

Perhaps a small cafe, or better yet, a catering business, that allows me to manufacture jams or relishes, and sell them at markets or online.  Something that won't perish or need cold long storage.

A girl I used to work with does that, and works part time so that she can look after the kids who are quite young and not yet at school.  The catering part, also means that she can work a few hours in the evening at a catering party etc..


Joined Oct 12, 2009
/img/vbsmilies/smilies/chef.gif  Go online  to   http://www.craigslist.com   then bring up your closest city and under JOBS click on food/bev/hosp With no current experience be prepared to to work for less pay. I was an Exec. when I came to Florida. After seeing the quality of staff that was available I took 20 years off to raise my family and repaired TV's & VCR's until it became a "buy and throw-away market" in the late 80's. When I returned to BOH the quality of staff had not changed so I became a Banquet Chef at a few country clubs before I started catering until I retired. The professionalism today is not what we are accustomed to. If you can handle "country club politics"  they usually pay more than hotels and restaurants./img/vbsmilies/smilies/cool.gif  GOOD LUCK!
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