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why a chef you ask?

Describe 'why a chef you ask?' here

Being a chef is hard. Its a lot of work and its takes up a lot of time. But its the best choice I have ever made. Not only do I get to eat all I want all day but I also get to learn and increase my knowledge as a Pastry chef.
When it comes to being a chef the main thing is not about if you can cook. But also can u teach someone, without you teaching them in a direct attempt for them to learn. There are a lot of chefs that I've known and I learned a lot because of them. Just by how their work ethic is. And they probably have no idea that I learned anything from them.....thats a CHEF.
Before you make that guranteed decision to become a chef. Ask yourself "what don't I like about it" because its pretty apparent why u want to become a chef. But if you can answer that question honest and really know if you can live with that because it can make you better person or a more structured individual. Or you can find absolutely NOTHING you don't like about it. That's when you will know. And that's when your life will change, or better yet begin.

Comments (12)

Wow, so dramatic. I don`t agree with everything said. Being in the business ,busting your ass in the heat , the physical and mental toll on you. I don`t think they teach that in school. Wrong, the main thing is learning to cook and do it well or else you`ll find yourself right out of a job. Do employer`s really care if I can teach someone, not really. Don`t get me wrong if there is an opportunity to show someone a technique I will because they same was done for me. The reality is we are underpaid, long hours, no social life, forget ever being off for holiday`s or your mom`s birthday. I do it because I am crazy and it`s the one good thing that i`m good at. My advise is get a job in a kitchen for at least a year then you`ll know if this is what you want to do for your career.
I agree with both of you. You can tell you have both had different experiences. Explorer 13 has had experiences more like mine. I think I spent a lot of money on culinary school. Had I worked in this industry and realized the ego involved, which allows bullying and belittling others, I would have chosen the computer field and at least been paid for my efforts. I can cook and have a great work ethic, but know we all hold the responsibility for our circumstances.
i burn my hands i reach into 400 degree ovens i cut my fingers, stand for weeks at a time, drink too much smoke, i an crazy as well cause i love being a chef. i can teach you, but you better already be able to withstand the heat!
i must agree with explorer13. We ar crazy, but i'll be damned if I don't love every second of it. And I'm really not an ass hole all the time, only when my staff makes me be one. I fully agree with spending some time in a real kitchen cause it is definetely not food network!!
Anything worth doing has to be done right and if your not willing to put you heart and soul into this business you will not survive. It is hard...yes, the hours are long...yes, and there is no such thing as vacation time just slow season. However, as a Chef I love it when I have the perfect dish.. that perfect night, or even when you have a perfect year. Its those moments of instant gratification that I still do this night and day. When you have guests come into town just be at you r place for one night I love that. They come for my food. I love that. Everything else that is hard about this biz, the stupid plate carriers or that snooty somllier,....dosent matter. Because I know the guests are here for me and the experience of having a truley great meal.
I want to know what all of you professional and retired chefs really think about the culinary schools. my son supposed to start in october at LeNotre Houston Tx.. The tuition is $46K and I think that is highway robbery. does a passionate cook need go to school? why not just get foot in door somewhere and start at the bottom? It is how I became an accountant. I want your truthful opinions.thanks, robin
Tuition is very expensive for culinary schools. CIA and Cordon probably being the most expensive. The good thing about culinary schools is that they give you all the tools one may need to BECOME a Chef. Making the climb to the top a little tiny bit easier. NOw if he were to start in a restuarant and get his foot in the door that is fine too you have to hussle more and know who the big guys are in town and work with them starting as a Pantry cook or even Commis. I worked with two James Beard winners and one of which I was a part of. I lucked out. Keep in mind that in our business you have to want to succeed. Nothing is handed to you especially in this economic climate. That means after culinary school working with a well known Chef..ie. Thomas Keller, or Gordan Ramesy all have a mentoring structure for those who what to be learn from the best or moving to Europe doing alot of stages. Being a cook takes alot of patience and sacrafice nothing is going to happen over night. Alot of watching and doing what the Chef wants you to do and not what you think how it should be done.....( BIG NO NO ). Soo in short he needs to do what he thinks is best for him, but be very aware that when he is outof school that the work and the road only gets harder if and only if he wants to be in the top restuarants and resorts. Vaya con el Bueno. Z
I'm a student now, I love every second of it. I haven't gotten to take a whole lot of culinary classes yet, I'm doing my pre-reqs too at the community college, but the ones I have taken (saucier, a costing class, purchasing class, beverage lass) have shown me so much into the cooking world. I work in a fancier Italian restaurant now, just doing the salads(which believe me, there's work involved) and the desserts, but the servers know I mean business. I like to have fun in the kitchen, we dance to the music they play, but I know when to flip the switch too. It's SO hard working in the kitchen, it's hot, people yell at you, I'm a woman so I'm not taken seriously, but it's so rewarding.
@robintx, I thought the same thing"Why don't I just just get my foot in the door", but honestly, I can tell you I want to go far. I don't want to just be a line cook, I want to be the one doling out the instructions. Having a degree or a certificate under your belt can really do a person some good. My Saucier instructor told me "with cooking, it'd either you love it or hate it, there's no in between" so be sure your son is serious about it. $46K seems like alot(I'm going to a community college to get my ass. degree of applied science to be a chef). The executive chef for where I work didn't go to school, he's a good chef and knows his stuff. I think it can go both ways: a degree is good to have, but getting your foot in the door can be vital too. Hope all goes well with him!
I started out NYC, Front of the House waitering and Critiqued the desserts at the place I was working. The Apple Pie was horrible. Soon the owner asked me if I could do better. I thought I could and went home to my 5 flight walk up in Brooklyn carrying a huge bag of apples that I had bought at the korean Deli's. Overnite I produced a couple of pies. I brought them in on subway during rush hour. ( Crazy, not recommended). The owner loved them and the next day I was in the kitchen turning out Dozens of Pies. Now understand, the only training I had was from my mom back in Minnesota. Anyway, after supplying this one busy restaurant, I quit my job, rented Kitchen space in Brooklyn and set up my own delivery business. I expanded into Cheesecakes, 7 types of pies, Quiche, Muffins, Scones, and lastly cakes. I learned everything in Books, ( there was no time for school) and ended up delivering to some of the best places in town. Dean and Delucca, Grace's Marketplace, etc. etc. after a couple of years, I moved back to Minneapolis, I worked in a couple of bakeries and kept on learning, occasionaly I took an extension class. For the last couple of years I have been an executive Pastry Chef in a College. I do high end pastries as well as everyday comfort desserts for my clients. My point to you is that Yes school is good, Learning the technical aspects of what you are doing is great, but experience is reallty the key, reading up and keeping up with the current trends is a great way to keep yourself in the game. Sometimes throwing yourself into the fire is a good thing it prioritizes what needs to be done. It teaches you how quick and fast you need to be to succeed in this business. That is something that I have not seen with people just coming out of Cullinary School.
you said it Kikilarue59,...experience, ........that and it helps to know people
All i want in the world is to become a chef i live for cooking its all i ever do or think about, food and cooking is like a religion to me ive never bin so obsessed with anything.. is this what it was like for u chefs??
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