The role of a chef is one of the most exciting and rewarding careers in the world. It requires creativity, commitment, drive, and dedication, but all amount to an incredible skill-set that will serve you for the rest of your career. To many people, the idea of becoming a chef is daunting, and evokes many questions: where do I begin? Am I good enough to become a chef? Where can I learn the skills I need?
While these are important questions, the answers aren’t as complicated as you might think. Read on to find out what you need to know about becoming a chef in 2019.
When considering a job as a chef, ask yourself the following questions:
- What do you want to achieve in your career?
- What skills do you already have in food preparation that could be useful?
- Do you have a passion for certain styles of food? If so, what are they?
- Are you willing to work long hours to bring your ideas to fruition?
- Do you get satisfaction from preparing an incredible meal for someone else, even someone you have never met?
BECOMING A ChEF in 2019 – tHE DIFFERENT KINDS OF CHEF
If you asked most people what they think a chef is, they would probably say ‘someone who cooks food’. However, the role of a chef is far more varied than this, and requires a wide range of skills. Depending on what kind of chef you are, the abilities you’ll need to have developed will vary. Let’s take a look at the different kinds of chef you would typically find in a restaurant kitchen.
This is the starting point for most chefs. This role does not necessarily require that you attending college to become a chef. You might have moved up from a kitchen porter position.
Pros: You get firsthand experience of what goes on in a kitchen – it’s a great place to start.
Cons: The work is hard and often dirty, you’ll usually have to do heavy lifting, and you’ll have to keep on top of deliveries.
Requirements: You need to have a keen interest in food. You’ll also need to be a team player.
As a commis chef, your main job will be preparing ingredients for the senior chefs. You’ll also need to maintain levels of hygiene in the restaurant.
Chef de Partie
This is the ‘next step up’ from the commis chef, as you will be working directly under the head chef and sous chef.
Pros: Being able to work closely with the sous chef and head chef will give you incredible insight into the process of making great food.
Cons: Like the commis chef, you’ll still need to perform a lot of prep tasks such as picking spinach.
Requirements: At the very least, you need an NVQ/SVQ level 2 college course qualification, and must have at least 3 years experience as a commis chef.
As a chef de partie, your job will be to prepare, cook, and present dishes within your speciality or section. You’ll also have to manage commis chefs.
The role of a sous chef is to run the kitchen alongside the head chef.
Pros: The ability to work creatively and flex your talents.
Cons: The role comes with a lot of pressure.
Requirements: At least 10 years experience as a chef.
The sous chef is responsible for running the kitchen when the head chef is absent. They are also responsible for making sure that the kitchen staff maintain high culinary standards.
The role of the head chef is to run the kitchen. You’ll be producing high-quality dishes, and in many cases will have a hand in the menu’s offerings.
Pros: Freedom of expression and the ability to add your own flair to the food and menu.
Cons: Lots of paperwork, responsibility for dealing with issues within the team.
Requirements: At least 15 years as a chef.
The head chef will be responsible overall for the daily operations in the kitchen. They will also be responsible for handling food orders, and raising profit margins on the food.
How to Become a Chef – Contents
The road to becoming a chef might be daunting, but it’s entirely achievable. In this guide, you’ll be given everything you need to know to start your journey on becoming a chef in 2019. In this guide, you’ll receive the following:
- Guidance on the different training routes open to trainee and to-be chefs.
- Useful contact details for those embarking on their journey to becoming a chef.
- Tips for gaining experience as a chef.
- A guide to building and writing a winning CV.
- A list of personal equipment required to become a chef.
How to Become a Chef Guide
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