Real Chef?

Joined Sep 23, 2007
Does anyone know is there an accessible registry of all CEC title holders? We have a new big talking guy in our kitchen who reminds us hourly that he holds this position, but a lot of his talk just doesn't add up, the most obvious point being why would a CEC take a spot as a sautee cook, which he is obviously overqualified for?The GM doesn't want to talk about it, and the rest of the kitchen would like to call bullpoop, but we can't find any way to either confirm or deny?
Joined Jul 16, 2005
I have seen on the acf website that they have some, which basicly has the chefs listed with the restaurants they work for, I dont think they have all of them though.
Joined Oct 10, 2005
Call his bluff, ask to see his credentials. In the meantime catch as many mistakes that he makes as you can, cell-phone cameras come to mind... and if and when he does produce the credentials ask him to explain his mistakes.

I am all for credentials, but they are no guarantee that the holder actually can do what he says he can do, just like a driver's license is no guarantee that the driver doesn't drive like an eejit.
Joined Apr 20, 2007
I'm in total agreement with foodpump, ask to see his credentials. I have found over the years that there is a long line of BS that can be attributed to no one asking for proof.
Just my opinion though...


Staff member
Joined Jun 11, 2001
Ask him when he got his CEC. Prior to 1998, no exam required. Participation only. 1998-2004(?) exam+supervisory experience points+nutrition/sanitation/management class, no ACF membership required, but renewing required plus refresher courses in sanitation. After 2004 or so, practical exam was added.

Best way to do it is to look at his job history and make sure it matches with the supervisory experience points requirement for CEC. 2 points per year, 1 point per half year, but you must have worked a full year, and you need something like 14 points to qualify to even take the test. So if you worked some place for six months, you don't get points. One year and six months gets you three points.

Actually in the old format many numbskulls managed to pass the written portion. That's why you see at the CMC practical so many chefs have no basic cooking skills. That's changing though.
Joined Aug 21, 2004
Maybe he is, maybe he isn't. None of that matters the minute guests walk into the restaurant. My guests don't care what I have done in the past, they care about what I am doing today. They can't eat titles, awards, etc. The best measure of a professional is today.
Joined Feb 1, 2007
I have one credential on my right hand at all's a two inch long, half inch thick callous on my finger that took 12 years to get. People sometimes look down at my hand when they shake it to see if i'm holding something...oh, excuse me that's just my mangled hand. sorry.

I have no cec or culinary degree.

Just my $.02
Joined Apr 17, 2006
What's wafflegrid? If there's a way to get burnt from a fryer, I know I've done it, but I don't think I ever had wafflegrid. My favorite is when I'm brain-dead enough to pull something out with the tongs and hold it up to drain and the hot oil runs up the handle of the tongs and into the palm of my hand. I hate when I do stupid stuff like that. I recently had two parallel burns on my wrist and someone commented "Nice burns, how'd you do that?" I didn't even know. Don't remember it even happening.
Joined Jun 14, 2002
Wafflegrid is where you place the hot fryer basket on your hand or arm and you get a nice red grid burnt into you.

I always get burnt when moving around hot oven racks. My arms got so messed up once, I looked like the guy from Kung Fu.

I hate that oil and tongs thing. Always got to be aware of everything in the kitchen...

Here's a bit of culinary math for the new culinary students on the board:

veal bones + sheet pan + oven = suck!

Veal bones release a surprising amount of fat. Use a deep roasting pan like you're supposed to.
Joined Oct 22, 2005
Oh man, I've done that way too many times as well. First time I did it I was like "What the ****? Why is my hand on fire?".
Joined Jun 27, 2006
This question reminds me of another question associated with a different field. "What do you call a person that graduated from Medical school with all D's? ............................ Doctor."

I guess the same would apply to someone with less than stellar talent or grades from an Acredited Culinary school.

And for what it's worth... As far as taking a position below ones abilities? There are many circumstances that facilitate such a move and some of those are just unavoidable. Burn-out for one. First hand experience with that one. But it's not like I saw it coming.:rolleyes: Who'da figgered it after I performed support or lead position repsonsibilities for the opening of 12 concepts in 2 years and 6 of them in as many months. (No BS.) Believe me the step back was....... Heaven!

BTW. Well said Gladyce France!!!!
Joined Jun 23, 2006
In my younger days, when I was about 17-18 working in a local steakhouse, I started as an assembly man. We were in charge of the baked potatoes. You have no clue how many scars I still have on my forearms, to this day, because of the oven racks. And the oven was so **** high, if I remember it was head level. I am 6'4'' now... hmm... must've been before I hit my growth spurt.
Joined Oct 18, 2007
oldschool1982;193546 said:
And for what it's worth... As far as taking a position below ones abilities? There are many circumstances that facilitate such a move and some of those are just unavoidable.

If I find myself out of work for too long I'll take any job to get a paycheck coming in.
I'll work 2 dishwashing jobs if I have to (fortunately this hasn't happened in a very long time).
I'll still keep pursuing a better job, but keeping a roof and food for the family takes precedence over pride.
Joined Aug 11, 2000
personal scarring....who needs tattoo artists we scar ourselves.
It's been suggested by several that an investment in elbow length oven mits would be a good purchase.....HUH? gotta wear shtuff?that takes more time.....
Joined Aug 23, 2007
I was busy talking to customers in the cafe and completely forgot that I was frying - not washing! so dipped my whole hand in the hot oil!! - deep fried fingers! and had to fire up another fryer to serve more customers!! Man it hurt for days!


Joined Mar 2, 2006
Is any of the accreditation worth it? I would like to join the ACF just for the recognition and certification. My dream would be one day to hold a master chef certification. As the only chef in the family I feel kind of lame considering all my other brothers and sisters all have some sort of doctorate or masters degrees and I always feel kind of like I let my family down being in their eyes just a "cook". Is it worth it? Do these credentials open any doors that ordinarily would stay shut? I have 25 years in the business and have competed internationally and won a few awards and medals but, I have nothing like a master chef title. It in my opinion is way harder to obtain than a masters degree. It would be cool bragging rights, but if bragging rights are all they are, like I said, is it worth it??


Joined Mar 2, 2006
On a side note I think the master chef stuff is like the Navy Seals, for every real one you meet there are 1000 people out there who claim to be a Navy Seal. LOL
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