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Question to Chefs in this forum...

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Hi,
Currently I am working with a chef privately one day a week trying to apprentice to become a chef as there is no culinary school for me locally. I am wondering if this is a viable option as I am spending the whole day preparing food that I am providing for the instruction. The problem that arises is the cost of food and trying to prepare it 3 times during the week before my next lesson. Obviously this is far too much of the same type of food for a family to consume. The cost is somewhat prohibitive, not to mention the waste of food. I'm wondering if there are other options available that anyone may know of short of me relocating to attend culinary school. I am working and planning in between all of this to attend the Pacific Culinary Institute of America in Vancouver, B.C. Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts: Culinary Arts, Culinary Schools, Culinary Arts Schools does anyone have any experience or input with this school? Or in the alternative is the best way to become an experienced chef just to work your way up in a restaurant kitchen and if yes which type of restaurant would yield the best experience. Thank you for any information you may be able to provide to help me in my quest to become a chef.
post #2 of 13
Cooky2,

If you want to do this as your profession, get into a restaurant situation. Not knowing what is being taught to you, I'd say that you're probably wasting your time...even if you have to work for nothing and stand in the corner, peeling potatoes, you will get a feel for what it's really like. Not to mention, that first reference and contacts are invaluable. Also, DVD's from CIA and free podcasts are a great resource. Good luck!
post #3 of 13
We have some (old timers) chefs from Salt Lake on this site, contacting them would make sense.
cooking with all your senses.....
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cooking with all your senses.....
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post #4 of 13
Thread Starter 
Edited 5/5/07
post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 
One more question Leopoldk, where can I purchase CIA dvds and where can I obtain free podcasts?
Thank you in advance!
Cooky2
post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 
Shroomgirl, how can I contact the chefs from Salt lake in this forum?

Thank you!
Cooky
post #7 of 13
Hi!

Check out CIA's website first. Find the subject matter you like, then look around for it on the net. You may find it cheaper than direct from CIA. I'm assuming you have an IPOD video. You can go to itunes...store...podcasts...and search for CIA or even cooking, for that matter. If you don't have an ipod that plays vids, you can just watch them on your computer. I don't know if they've been updating them recently or not...but any free stuff from them is gold...they charge for everything!!! You can also check other schools like CCA (S.F.) or NECI (New England) for similar website freebies. Good luck and keep in touch!!!
post #8 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thanks so much Leopoldk! I do have an ipod that plays video, thank you for letting me know. What do you think about cooks illustrated and American Test Kitchen TV on demand websites membership? People pay a monthly or yearly fee to watch their videos in the computer at anytime, and to have access to a lot of their recipes. Any input in this?
About magazines, I'm also thinking of subscribing to Cooks illustrated, Gourmet and Bon Appetit, some better suggestion that you may have?

Thank you!!!

Cooky2
post #9 of 13
Cooky,
sorry it didn't work out for you. good luck with future projects.
cooking with all your senses.....
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cooking with all your senses.....
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post #10 of 13
Purchase this book and start going through it. You will know more than most after going through it.

Amazon.com: The Professional Chef, Seventh Edition: Books: Culinary Institute of America

Really if you want to be a chef, spend the $ on the book and start through it. Very well written, very easy to understand and if you get stuck you can always come ask the pros on the website for help in understanding a tough spot.
I am a reduction of my youthful mistakes mixed with the roux of a few adult successes
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I am a reduction of my youthful mistakes mixed with the roux of a few adult successes
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post #11 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thanks so much bbally for your great advise! I do have already this book which is the 7th edition, and also the new 8th edition. I will follow your advise and study this book, thank you for the great idea that as I study with any question, I can count with people like you in this forum!:)
Thank you!!
Cooky2
post #12 of 13
leopoldk is giving you sound advice. Take it before you even consider going to a culinary school. Culinary school is very expensive and the small percentage of graduates who succeed as chefs continues to be a dirty little secret. To be a great chef, make that acceptable working chef, is to be a combination of artist, scientist, psychologist, and businessperson. It simply isn't enough to want to be a chef because you enjoy cooking. You must have the skill and stamina as well as the understanding that your work days will often begin when others are beginning to relax. It's hard work, often for pay not commensurate with either your skill or effort. Chefs stay in the kitchen because they're addicted to the action.
post #13 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thank you RSteve, I truly appreciate your advice too as much as I do Leopolk's. I might be confusing my passion for wanting to be an excellent cook, for my family, for entertaining with friends, etc. with wanting to be a chef, it is posible. I have many books, which are textbooks, as The New professional Chef, Pastry And baking with the CIA, On Cooking, On Baking, etc. And I want to also get me the ones by the ACF as well. I think that following Leopoldk's advise as well as studying my books I can have a better understanding of the profession. And also I will continue to assist a chef in classes for Sur la Table, which I currently do, and I really, really enjoy!:)
Thank you!

Cooky2
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