New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

First day?

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
I am not a professional chef and I am just getting my first hotline job now in a new city where I know no one. I though it would be a good stress releiver for me to read some stories from the pros and line studs about their first days on the job... any stories?
post #2 of 16
well, had a first week where i broke a buncha plates one day, burnt a whole roast turkey breast another day, then slipped, fell and hurt myself bad enough i couldn't stand on my leg for a few minutes then proceeded to catch a towel i was using on my knife tip so it spun on the cutting board an stabbed me in the side then gashed my finger as i reached down to pull it out. 15 stitches later I put on a glove and went back to work. was real happy that friday was only a day away.
"In those days spirits were brave, the stakes were high, men were real men, women were real women, and small furry creatures from Alpha Centauri were real small furry creatures from Alpha Centauri. "
Reply
"In those days spirits were brave, the stakes were high, men were real men, women were real women, and small furry creatures from Alpha Centauri were real small furry creatures from Alpha Centauri. "
Reply
post #3 of 16
All I can say for me, is, that it felt for a very long time, I just could not do anything right. All my cuts were to thin, to thick. Felt like I just overcooked / undercooked every protein and veggie imaginable, burned / cut myself everyday. But now... 5 years later, I'm still learning daily, but I am a heck of a lot better now that I got my "legs" in cooking. I can time things so much better, learned so many little "tricks" that have saved me so much time.
I guess really in summary, I'm just glad I stuck thru it when there was no light and the end of the tunnel. The nights where you just wanted to walk out with your twenty tickets hanging. Oh and its neat to be able to guide new people now that I work with.
post #4 of 16
Well, Im certainly no profeesional chef but I'm just starting out on line cook now. I've moved from waitstaff, to dishwasher, to KP to line cook and baker. And gotta say Im asolutely loving it. I've never been so passionate about anything in my life as I have with this newfound cooking lifestyle and trade. I have a veyr supporting team and head chef.
But my first week was ****. I expected alot of myself...first mistake for someone who has no culinary experience other than watching my mother cook as a child.
So they started me on opening shift and breakfast service. On the first day I almost burnt the kitchen down by leaving a tea towel discarded brazingly close to a grill and walking away.
My second day I manage to drop a timer into boiling water not once but twice...destroying them both, whilst the headchef was watching.
The third day I almost completed my previous mission of burning down the kitchen by leaving a wok with oil on a hotplate unattended...setting off the fire alarms (a hard task to achieve), smoking out the restaurant and causing the guests staying the hotel to evacuate.

Ive been in the kitchen for 3 months working the line as hard as I can and baking aswell on the offdays. I've made so many mistakes its embarrassing and I was very hard on myself for making such mistakes....but I'm learning from them I can honestly say. And I think really, that thats whats its all about at first.
Since that first week Ive managed to draw gallons of blood form multiple knife wounds, had many blisters and lost a heap of skin in a series of burns from grills, ovens and hotplates...BUT I LOVE IT EVEN MORE!!!!!

Im still making mistakes, burning things, F***ing up breads, **** the other day I even stuffed up Chantilly cream by overwhipping it. SO don't worry bud...you sound like u got experience and I think you'll be fine as long as you keep level headed and just get the job done to the best of your ability. Remember me and my first week when things go bad...cause Im sure that Ive set a decent benchmark for completely bollocking up in the kitchen.. he he he.

Good luck to you mate.
post #5 of 16
You know I never had really terrible incidences, only because I took it one day at a time, was Very in tune to learning, only did something if I was sure about it.
If you're just learning don't be afraid to ask questions, sh*t I never stop asking questions! The only way to learn from someone else in full (because I'm sure you can watch, but there is ALWAYS a reason for what you do, in the kitchen) is to ask Questions!!

Of course there have been those times. For example on my first day at this one corporate restaurant I was being trained how to cut salad, and believe you me cutting romaine is easy. So I basically told my trainer to leave me be. I filled a deep plastic hotel pan full of cut lettuce, and on my way to the cooler I dropped the whole thing!!
You know what, sh*t happens and everyone knows that. Just gotta take it one day at a time and don't rush! Be sensible.

post #6 of 16
I don't think I had anything disastrous happen on my first day...although on my FOURTH day I did.

I had just thrown in 4 quarts of water on top of all my flour in the Hobart. Didn't realize it at the time but I started up the mixer on 3rd speed. A HUGE chunk of dough spit up at me and literally covered me from head to toe. Took me HOURS to get all the dough out of my hair.

About three months later I was rolling croissants when I looked down and noticed my left hand was gushing blood out of the top of it. To this day I still have no idea how I did it...but I have a nice little scar to remind me of the incident!
post #7 of 16
well, how'd it go man? you had to have had it by now haha.
post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 

not so hot

I have been through two jobs siceI started here in pittsburgh, and I have to say that my first days both went great, the weeks proceeding them not so much.

The first job was a complete crock I worked my *** off and got treated like **** and sabotaged, someone actually turned the fryer down to 250 when I was in the walk in... resulting in me half cooking a piece chicken and a chef throwing the thermometer across the kitchen... not fun.

second job I worked for two weeks, guy never puts me on the schedule again I keep calling him he brings me in for one night and fires me... I have decided that pittsburgh is not the place for me, the kitchen isn't really either. I was so gung ho about this whole thing and now I have such a bitter taste in my mouth... thanks everyone on here for answering any questions I had and for replying to my posts.

I will keep you in mind if I ever have more culinary questions but I think it is time for me to move on in career choices.
post #9 of 16
My friend, there's a reason I got out of production kitchens nearly a decade ago and never looked back.

I cook because I love to create, and I love to entertain.

Neither of those are an option in a restaurant, unless you are the Big Cheese.
Youtube channel: TheMetalChefOnline

The classics, presented irreverently with a healthy dose of slapstick and loud music.
Reply
Youtube channel: TheMetalChefOnline

The classics, presented irreverently with a healthy dose of slapstick and loud music.
Reply
post #10 of 16
1st job, 1st day at the family cafe. straight from school, working for my father...OMG i thought i knew him!!

Nuff said :eek::eek::eek:
"If we're not supposed to eat animals, why are they made of meat?" Jo Brand
Reply
"If we're not supposed to eat animals, why are they made of meat?" Jo Brand
Reply
post #11 of 16
First day, chef gave me a ton of mushrooms with a ton of filling.

Told me to pull the stem out and stuff them. 4 years later, and I still make them :-).
post #12 of 16
oh man, you live in pittsburgh?! I just moved to johnstown from lancaster to open this new restaurant called the crows nest with my friend. we're neighbors :)
post #13 of 16
In every restaurant on everyones first day we walk in and tell everyone in the kitchen how we did things in other restaurants. After the first hour, the Chef will walk up to you and say, We don't care how you did things someplace else, this is how we do them here....Bill
post #14 of 16
The vast, vast majority move faster than they really have to. Slow down. Like a construction site, your job is to not hurt somebody else (1st) and yourself (2nd).

I've cooked beside some reasonably big names and they actually weren't all that 'fast.' But boy were they efficient.

I always wanted people around me with an intuition for cooking. I never had much use for human food processing machines. I'd take a slow chopper that UNDERSTOOD what we we trying to do any day. I've seen a lot of glorified prep cooks come and go. I'd rather put an 80 year old grandmother on the line that knows something rather than Bruce Lee with a chef's knife.

I've sent more than a few pan shakers packing.

Moral? Again, slow down. Cook the food with care.

You need to make sure you cook something complicated and intricate in your home kitchen at least three times a week. Read good cookbooks. A lot.
post #15 of 16
This didn't happen to me the first day but it did in the first few days because the corporate trainers were still there and they rescued me.

I was sharing my grill with this complete and total a$$hat (sorry for the language but there is no polite way to describe this guy) and I was doing omelettes and he was doing eggs. So.. I have my side full up of omelettes.. six of them and dumba$$ decides I am not moving fast enough for him ( again... back to the raw thing.. can't send out raw eggs now can we??) so he reaches over me and starts pushing the plates down the line so the guy on meats can potato them while my omelettes finish cooking. Sounds ok so far, right? Well.. he DROPPED two plates onto the grill and they broke. I just stood there and looked at my omelettes that were all within a minute or two of being plated! I thought I was going to cry but the trainers came to my rescue and moved him off of the grill and helped me remake everything plus remake all of the eggs he had on his side.
OK ... where am I going?.. and WHY am I in this handbasket??
Reply
OK ... where am I going?.. and WHY am I in this handbasket??
Reply
post #16 of 16
I think the best way to describe what is expected of a line cook is to cook the food well and properly with care at an efficient pace.
OK ... where am I going?.. and WHY am I in this handbasket??
Reply
OK ... where am I going?.. and WHY am I in this handbasket??
Reply
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Professional Chefs