or Connect
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

What is a Chef? - Page 2

post #31 of 42

While admittedly I am not addressing the original question, I am however offering my observation about a sub current that has cropped up; it appears to me that chef is delineated more by the personal vignette than anything else. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
Reply
Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
Reply
post #32 of 42

Chef D Cuisine, Executive Chef, Sous Chef, Chef Saucier, Chef Garde Manger, Chef Potage, Chef Bolanger and down the line. These are the discriptive words  used for decades. They are all proffessionals and no one  need to be refered to as proffessional chef, that is understood., or should be. To insist on being called proffessional chef to me is ego serving to ones self. You can't spend the title in the store.....

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

Reply

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

Reply
post #33 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChefDave11 View Post

I don't know what you're trying to say with that statement.  All it does is reinforce the feeling that, through your postings on this thread, you've made it your objective to try and diminish what the title of chef should or shouldn't mean.  And I, for one, take offense to that.  I'm not offended, but I do take offense.  

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by Koukouvagia View Post

 

By the way, the title "professional chef" is a bit misleading.  If you're a chef and you have the credentials to prove it why does the word "professional" need to be in there?  Does it need to be in the title?  Next time I need my taxes done I'll skip going to my CPA and seek out a professional CPA instead :)

Again, you're attempting to diminish a title I EARNED.  Not ONLY through hard work - it's not about hard work, otherwise my dishwasher/prep cook would be called a chef - but through the extent of my experience(s), past and continuing education, and quality of my work.

Why does it bother you so much for "professional" to be in the title?  Why is this even an issue for you?

There is simply a delineation between professional chef and amateur chef, and I don't know any chef who refers to themselves as a "professional chef" - it's understood.  but for the purposes of Cheftalk.com, the delineation makes sense.

Our profession, what we do for work, is being a chef.  Let me reemphasize something that's been noted a number of times throughout this thread - No chef on here is in any way minimizing the quality of food a home cook may make, or diminishing what any home cook's abilities may be.

 

Next time you get your taxes done, why don't you go to the guy who took 6 accounting courses as an undergrad, and has a great grasp and understanding of it, even though that's not what he decided to do professionally?  He does it...on the side, and every single one of his clients has been very satisfied.  He is an amateur accountant, and does great work.  While you don't necessarily need a Certified Public Accountant to do your taxes, and while there are CPAs out there doing some seriously shoddy work, there is generally a comfort level that comes with using someone who has done whatever it is they needed to do to earn that title.

 

While my brother (business partner can cook and does cook at home), our clients would feel much more comfortable having me doing the cooking.

 

I'm not trying to offend you.  I don't take issue with you calling yourself a Professional Chef or anyone else.  I have always respected people in the food industry.  However, titles and certifications within the food industry don't have the same impact that they do within the medical profession.  The medical industry is standardized, nobody's out there practicing medicine without proper certification, there are lots of people cooking without degrees.  Until there is standardization of certification in by which every "chef" at the helm of any and every kitchen must have met certain standards then the title means little to a layman like myself. 

 

I'm in the same boat as you, I'm a musician.  I have degrees from the most prestigious music conservatories in the world.  But when I'm hired for gigs those things don't mean a thing unless I can play my instrument and get the job done.  Beyonce doesn't have a degree from a conservatory, I doubt she can even read music.  But she sure as heck makes a lot more money than I do.  That's the nature of the music industry I'm afraid and I have to accept that.  My degree has very little meaning in the real world.  But I can hold it up and wave it around and say I'm a master so and so.

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

Reply

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

Reply
post #34 of 42

OK. I'm a "Chef". I am trained and have lots of experience in culinary arts/skills. That part is simple. I work in restaurant kitchens ... and I get paid ... that makes me a "professional". Put those two(2) simple vocabulary words together and TA-DA!!! You have a new concept. Things can be much simpler if you just look at them correctly. 

 

 

 

 

* Where do you get virgin wool? .................................... Ugly sheep. 

"And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music."

I'm not sayin', I'm just sayin'.

Reply

"And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music."

I'm not sayin', I'm just sayin'.

Reply
post #35 of 42

Chef Dave 

We all ran througt the gamut of hard knocks  not just you alone.. Possibly you should look at it as I am an average guy in an average world doing an average thing.. You don;t have to tell yourself how good you are, because if you are others will know just by working and associating with you. You earn respect, you do not demand it.

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

Reply

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

Reply
post #36 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by chefedb View Post

Chef Dave 

We all ran througt the gamut of hard knocks  not just you alone.. Possibly you should look at it as I am an average guy in an average world doing an average thing.. You don;t have to tell yourself how good you are, because if you are others will know just by working and associating with you. You earn respect, you do not demand it.

 

In all fairness I don't think he's demanding respect just for himself but for all who have earned the title of chef.

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

Reply

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

Reply
post #37 of 42

You're exactly right, Koukouvagia - it's not about me, personally.  And it has nothing to do with how good I think or know I am, chefedb, I'm well aware that comes from other people.

 

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by Koukouvagia View Post

Until there is standardization of certification in by which every "chef" at the helm of any and every kitchen must have met certain standards then the title means little to a layman like myself. 

I think that I completely understand where you're coming from.  So many times that we go out to eat, or eat at an affair we're left wondering, "do they even have a  proper chef back there?".  Invariably, there is someone holding the title, but it's apparent they're lacking the skill-set to be properly referred to as a chef.  I get that, and it bugs me too, but dismissing all people who carry around the title of chef because of this is a little too cynical, even for me.  I'll give each one the benefit of the doubt until given reason to be dismissive.

The ACF does have standardized certifications, but even if every chef went through that process, we'd still encounter many who, after we watched cook or run a kitchen or ate their food, we'd go "Whaaaat?  You ain't no chef.  You're just a hack who thinks he's a chef and would be PERFECT for Hell's Kitchen."

And this is true across all fields, despite the accreditation, education level and certification.  Lawyers who are bad, doctors who screw up consistently, musicians who just aren't very good, mechanics who miss major issues, etc.  And besides, one could argue that being a culinary school graduate and having that diploma would suffice.  I mean, I could have kept working in restaurants as many very successful chefs do, but a major factor in my decision to go to culinary school was simply for that credential.  The response to that is, we KNOW that a culinary school diploma doesn't mean a thing.  We also know that giving our hard-earned money to the ACF for a standardized certification is...unnecessary.

It's just accepted that there are bad, average and good people in every field.

I will say that the one major difference with the food industry is that it's something every person - professional of layman - has a pretty good base of knowledge about.  We all eat, many of us cook.  People typically know "more" about food than they do about any other field.

post #38 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChefDave11 View Post

 We also know that giving our hard-earned money to the ACF for a standardized certification is...unnecessary.

 

 

A good reason to get a CEC is so you can get a CMC, and I have yet to meet a CMC who cannot cook.

post #39 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChefDave11 View Post
.  We also know that giving our hard-earned money to the ACF for a standardized certification is...unnecessary.

 

 

 

I dunno about that one...

 

Lets take for example driver's licenses.  I'm comfortable driving my car in N.American cities because I know that almost all of those driving have a license.  The license does not guarantee that they will not blow through a stop sign, it does not guarantee that they will known what  a flashing green light means.  It does, however guarantee that they have no excuse for not knowing.

 

That being said, I am NOT comfortable driving a car in uh...."some" countries.  I soil my shorts when I see the taxi driver using the "Egyptian brake pedal" (horn) going around a blind corner at break neck speeds.  I do not know if the driver knows the 4-way stop procedure, I do not know if his license was a result of a bribe.

 

Dude, the hospitality industry is one of the worst paying industries.  If we have no certification, no standardization, how can we negotiate decent wages?

...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
Reply
...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
Reply
post #40 of 42

I have two questions

1. why don't we take the "what's a chef" question "outside" (to another thread)

and

2. what IS your specialty?  If you don't have one, fine, but if someone says "what's your favorite recipe for xyz" i don;t say "I don;t make xyz, and I'm better than you because of that" - i just don;t answer. 

"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
Reply
"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
Reply
post #41 of 42

This question comes up often on cheftalk.  Please be respectful.

post #42 of 42

Given my last epic failures as a home cook (a category I need to revalidate) i would add, a Chef is somebody that in no way and under no circumstances poisons his/her clients and/or family and friends.

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Food & Cooking