SO confused.

Discussion in 'General Culinary School Discussions' started by taytealdred, Aug 14, 2011.

  1. taytealdred

    taytealdred

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    Okay, so i am a grade 10 student from canada. I love cooking. But i am confused about careers. Do i want to be a chef? I think so, but im not one hundred percent sure. Does anyone have any advice or any input or things that i will expect when youre a chef?
     
  2. petemccracken

    petemccracken

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    Do you
    • Want to get it done, or
    • Want to see to it that it gets done?
    Do you
    • Like repetitive, precise, replication, or
    • Never doing the same thing twice
    Do you
    • Like knowing exactly what is expected, or
    • Look forward to whatever challenge appears
    Do you
    • Feel more comfortable taking direction, or
    • Feel more comfortable giving direction.
    If mostly the second choices, then you probably woulld enjoy being a chef, otherwise, you will probably be happier as a cook.
     
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  3. taytealdred

    taytealdred

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    Thanks for that Pete. But i know being a chef or working in the culinary industry isnt like food network. I know its not even close. So i want to know what i should except starting off in the industry ( hours , pay , etc)
     
  4. petemccracken

    petemccracken

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    Well, in my area, talking entry level, hours will vary with the establishment, pay starts around $9-$11/hour, no fringe benefits. That's for a cafe/restaurant, fast food is a game I know little to nothing about! Oh, if you have a culinary diploma/certificate, maybe $8.50/hour /img/vbsmilies/smilies/laser.gifJUST KIDDING! /img/vbsmilies/smilies/crazy.gif

    For many independents, split shifts are not uncommon.

    Overtime? Highly unlikely, too many looking for work.

    You'll probably start as a relief dishwasher/gopher or, if you're lucky, prep helper. If you're skilled and adept, you'll have a good chance of advancing.

    As you work through the stations, i.e. prep cook, garde manger, line cook, head line cook, Chef de Partie, Sous Chef, Chef de Cuisine, you'll eventually get to Executive Chef, kind of like being in the military, there are enlisted and then there are officers (read chefs). If you're REAL good, you'll make "officer" in 10-15 years (and watch the 40 hour week disappear and morph into 50,60, 70 or more hours) and you'll probably be making $30,000-$60,000/year and begin to have opportunities to go out on your own instead of working for someone.

    Does that help? /img/vbsmilies/smilies/crazy.gif
     
     
  5. taytealdred

    taytealdred

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    Yes, thanks Pete. One more question ; what kind of food do you have to be able to make to be a prep cook? What kind of expierence? Because i've never had a job and im only in grade 10
     
  6. petemccracken

    petemccracken

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    IMHO, none!

    You will be:
    • Washing and peeling potatoes, turnips, and other root vegetables
    • Washing vegetables and fruit
    • Dicing potatoes, onions, carrots, celery, sweet peppers, chili peppers, tomatoes, leeks, etc. (once you've demonstrated adequate knife skills)
    • Preparing mise en place for the line cooks, garde manger
    • Opening cans of whatever and transferring to mise en place containers
    • Fetching pots, pans, kettles, bowls, etc.
    • Wiping down counters and equipment (learning about sanitation)
    • Sweeping and mopping floors (and more sanitation)
    • and probably helping the Dish Washer as needed.
     
  7. taytealdred

    taytealdred

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    Thanks pete ! And my knife skills are above par so im excited to try to get a job !