NEED SOME ADVICE: What can i do to be more professional?

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by markherm13, Jun 20, 2012.

  1. markherm13


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    Line Cook
    I have been working as a line cook for 7 years at various resturants but for the past 6 I have only been cooking for a paycheck not for the love of the art. I finally got a job that is 1 tier above you typical cooperate resturant. You actually cook the food to order! I am grossly obsessed with cooking now. The history, the culture, the science, the tools of the trade, the creativity and the satisfaction of putting together a dish that was once just a thought in my mind is soothing to the soul.

    I asked a retired chef what i need to change about the way i work and he said " Mark, you gotta be all over  it!"

    What are some things i can practice at work to really improve myself?

    The question sounds a bit dumb but I need to know to become better at what i do.
  2. boar_d_laze


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    Cook At Home
    • Pay attention to detail.
    • Don't get too impressed, it's only food.
    • Taste and touch everything. 
    • Focus on smoothness, and doing things correct, not speed;  pushing too hard not only results in mistakes but makes you go slower.
    • If you make a mistake, let it go.  Don't dwell, it takes you out of the present and good cooking is all about the present.
    • Hot pan and hot grill skills:  Never turn before the "release;" toss turn everything which can be toss turned. 
    • Never, ever, but never overcook.
    • Hit your seasoning levels, especially salt.  Ingredients don't arrive seasoned. 
    • Knife skills -- mostly sharpening, very few people including professionals have a clue; if you can't already make dead-straight cuts, practice;  if you either don't know or aren't proficient at the basic cuts, practice. 
    • If you're doing sauces, keep them clean; get them off the heat before beating in that final piece of butter; and sieve, sieve, and sieve some more.
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2012