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when can you call yourself a chef? - Page 3

post #61 of 92

Oh, one can never call them-self a Chef, only others may do that crazy.gif

Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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post #62 of 92

In my opinion you can call yourself a chef when you hold that position. Otherwise you are a line cook, or "cook". I hate those people who call them chefs when they are line cooks and so on. But, this has been the widely debated topic of many. But if you are owning your own business and making things happen with no one telling you what to do, then rock on Chef.

post #63 of 92

A-yup

 

The best way to define this thing is the "acid test" as follows:

 

A "Cook" is judged by what they put on a plate

 

A "Chef" is judged by how they run a kitchen.

 

End of discussion

...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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post #64 of 92

 who can answer my question i have been working as a chef /cook for over 30 years but cant call myself a chef has i have no qulifcations how can i get my life experance  grade 

post #65 of 92

I am a Culinary Student. So when are you considered a Chef and not just a professional cooK? A Culinarian...if you will?

post #66 of 92
IMO a chef is the one responsible for the kitchen as in ordering, bookkeeping, scheduling, budgets and when the shit hits the fan If people come looking for you to straighten it out.. You're the chef. Chef = Chief
post #67 of 92

To Chef Ed,

 

Hate to say it, but as much as you espouse loving the life of being a chef, there does seem a tad bit of bitterness in your words. It's almost as if being a chef stole your life from you and you are just enjoying your time at the top before (because it seems apparent you don't save for retirement) you go all the way back down to the bottom. 

 

 

And then I realized....this post was 12 years old LMAO

post #68 of 92

ok...now I am a little confused...so is that why sometimes the "Executive Chef" doesn't even really cook but is in charge of the administrative duties?

post #69 of 92
Quote:
Originally Posted by softkitty916 View Post

I am a Culinary Student. So when are you considered a Chef and not just a professional cooK? A Culinarian...if you will?

When?

When you are responsible for the food cost and labour cost of the kitchen.

Thats when.

O.K. Lets move along folks, thats all there is to this decidedly N.american age old question.
...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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post #70 of 92

it is not easy to be a real chef !!  i like chef .  

post #71 of 92

I would ask one of your chef instructors this question. I would use their estimation of your skill in determining whether you should call yourself chef. I am mostly curious if you have experience in sales. Catering of course involves a strong sales talent. 

post #72 of 92
Quote:
Originally Posted by znrctrnn View Post

I would ask one of your chef instructors this question. I would use their estimation of your skill in determining whether you should call yourself chef. I am mostly curious if you have experience in sales. Catering of course involves a strong sales talent. 

You aren't making a whole lot of sense.

Sales is sales, and running a kitchen is running a kitchen. If you do both, you'll fail at one, and have p.o.'d customers. True, many Chefs go on to sales-after leaving the kitchen, but they can't do both well at the same time.

But then again, I'm not a beverage expert......
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post #73 of 92

Pretty impressive run of zombie thread resurrections lately!  Since this one has risen from the grave I'll chime in.  "Chef" is simply the French word for "leader" or "head"..."boss" if you will.  If you're the boss, you're the chef.  Pretty simple.  I get that the word gets thrown around a lot and most of the time it's improperly used (or used colloquially to describe anyone that cooks).  Knowing this place someone will probably be along soon to say that the word has now "evolved" doesn't mean boss anymore...;)

"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
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"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
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post #74 of 92
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phaedrus View Post
 

...  "Chef" is simply the French word for "leader" or "head"..."boss" if you will.  If you're the boss, you're the chef.  ...

The head of the artillery in the French army is called the "chef de l'artillerie."

post #75 of 92

I am currently employed in a "yes chef" restaurant, where we are expected to address every other BOH employee as "chef".   Most of the employees (both BOH and FOH) have 5+ years experience in the industry, in varying capacities.  Granted, you say "chef" with a slightly different emphasis when referring to the exec, sous, or CDC, but we're all "chefs" at this place. It lends itself to a more professional atmosphere.  Don't really have a point in saying this. just wanted to chime in with a different perspective.

post #76 of 92

A post from 2005 a lot of water under the bridge. I wonder what the OP would say about it now. My stock answer to all the cooks wanting to be Chefs was, you can call yourself a Chef anytime  you want. But somewhere along the line your going to need to prove it.........

post #77 of 92

Pete :(

 

 

:beer:

post #78 of 92

  I have a neighbor at my apartment complex who always introduces me as a chef, it drives me crazy as I am only two and a half years in as a cook. Granted seven years in F.O.H. quietly observing from the wings and cooking at home has given me an edge I'm still just a cook. Having seen Owner/Chefs, Kitchen Managers, Sous and CDC's and what their responsibilities entail makes me far too humble to call myself a chef. But my neighbor is a sweet, slightly throwed off, older lady. So I always have to get all modest when she introduces me to someone :rolleyes:, especially if they work in the service industry as well lol. Same thing happens when someone mentions to someone that I (At a whopping 122lbs and a towering 5'7"! )  am a former Marine (Yeah 8 years ago when I was 19, for all of 8 months before an honorable discharge at only E-2 with no deployment or M.O.S training) lol.

post #79 of 92
It's nice to have another New Orleans/South LA native here, there are a few of us about. From NOLA and Thibodaux. A friend of mine was a grill cook at Comanders and gave me one of his embroidered coats, love it! The people here in NC don't even know what Commanders is
post #80 of 92

Yeah I haven't seen too many south Louisiana users on this forum, so likewise from N.O. :thumb:. I would love to tour Commander's Palace's kitchen at least once. I don't think I could work there anytime soon, seems to me you better have everything set right in your life to attempt a run with them. Maybe I'll give them a shot after around 5 more years, hopefully I'll have grown up abit by then, *sigh* I'ma miss my 20s :smoking:

post #81 of 92

Hmmm, I thought a chef was anyone who wrote a food blog  :roll:

If you make a pizza you can eat for a day.  If you make two pizzas you can eat for a day.
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If you make a pizza you can eat for a day.  If you make two pizzas you can eat for a day.
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post #82 of 92
When you can cook for 100 people, put a smile on their face and not poison any of them.
post #83 of 92

Thank you for that classic definition, "home chef". 

 

Thing is, a kitchen is part of a business, and a business by it's very definition needs to make money. 

 

If the one in charge of the kitchen can't make a buck for the business, or at least keep it from loosing money, then that person won't be around for very long. 

 

That's just life. And practical business procedure

 

Thus, you're a Chef when you're responsible for food and labour costs of your kitchen.  If you are not responsible for this, then you are a cook.

 

What can I say? 20 million food/hospitality related businesses can't be wrong.

...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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post #84 of 92
I got dat, But Chef means chief. A commercial Chef that goes in every day and runs the business end of a big food operation fits well, but not exclusively, when I am running two to three hundred pounds of brisket, or thirty gallons of etouffe, I am the go to chief.
post #85 of 92

No..... If you are purchasing that brisket, getting the best prices from suppliers, aware and controlling trim loss, cooking loss, and are selling it without any waste, and making money, then you are the Chef.  If someone does most of those duties for you, and you are only cooking it--albeit with minimal trim and cooking loss, then you are a cook. 

 

Contrary to N. American media beliefs, there is no shame in the word "Cook".  Just as there is no shame in being a head coach of a NFL team, and no shame in being a star quarterback for that same NFL team.  Both are very important positions.   

 

True, there are Chefs who sit in an office all day.  However there are many more chefs who work the line, train and instruct, do the purchasing, hiring, and are responsible for food and labour costs.

...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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post #86 of 92

I'm with foodpump on this 

 

A Chef is in charge of the kitchen whereas a cook is in charge of his or her station.

 

Of course, once you move into the bigger hotels then even the Chef or Exec. Chef will have little to do with purchasing (as this will be done via the purchasing department in order to get the best deals - as they don't only buy food but everything the hotel needs).

Still - the Chef or Exec. Chef still needs to work closely with said purchasing department to make sure they don't just buy 2000lbs of quinoa with nothing to go with it :)

 

Simply put, in all my years working in the industry, you are a cook as long as it is not your responsibility to manage the food cost :)

 

As for the OP's question - it is your business. Technically you are responsible for every aspect of it.

I would rather go with the title Owner (as that is really what you are) but if it gives you an edge, sure, go with Chef.

Don't think anyone will challenge you based on that.

post #87 of 92
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChefWalt View Post

When you can cook for 100 people, put a smile on their face and not poison any of them.


Done that, but I don't consider myself a chef, by any means.   Head Kitchener, maybe  ;)

 

I've 'technically' filled the position, having researched, planned, shopped for, and run a kitchen for several community events quite a few years ago.

But I'm not in the same ballpark - or even league - with those who do that every day on a professional basis.


Edited by ChrysFox - 1/25/16 at 7:53pm
post #88 of 92
Thanks for putting me in my place. I would have signed up as Walt, but it was taken. Glad you are all proud of your title.... Sign me Chef Walt.
post #89 of 92
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChefWalt View Post

Thanks for putting me in my place. I would have signed up as Walt, but it was taken. Glad you are all proud of your title.... Sign me Chef Walt.

 

Per management......At the top of the page.........

 

This forum is reserved for current and past professional chefs only. Only professionals in the food industry may post here though all are free to read.

post #90 of 92

@chefbuba

Not quite sure what you mean by that - care to elaborate?

Thanks :) 

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