I want to become a pastry chef once I graduate and I was wondering if there is need for pastry chefs. I have always wanted to become a pastry chef and it is a dream of mine, but If I can't get a job in the industry then I might as well look for a different job in the food industry. Also any other opinions of any other job in the food industry that are really fun to work in would also be appreciated ( I understand that pastry chefs don' t get very good pay).
Is there a lot of jobs open as a pastry chef?
Depends on what sector of the industry you want to work in. Restaurants are going to be the toughest, especially for a rookie.
How are your cake decorating skills? They are crucial skills for your marketability. I suck at decorating because I get a tremor when piping, and it's limited how far I can go in the pastry field, even though I'm a wiz at the technical stuff.
If you're a good decorator, you can get hired at pretty much any super market or bakery if you find yourself between good gigs.
You should learn how to do ice carving too. That's an excellent portable skill.
I was fortunate to work with a great pastry chef in Tampa, Fl. It was my first main job and it lasted for 5 years. I went in with hardly no experience leaving with some. I say some because there is a lot of information that you must achieve when it comes to the science of pastries and desserts. Honestly there is not a great demand for pastry chefs. Sometimes demographics play a major role. Most restaurants i have workd for sometimes ordered from outside sources. In this business you can expect to move around to be able to meet your needs and wants. If being a pastry chef is what you wan,t then go for it. It would be nice to be cross trained in other areas. Besides being trained in pastries. I also took on being a grill and sautee cook. If you truly want to invest your time and money in becoming a pastry chef. I would concentrate on the large metropolitan areas such as New York, L.A. and Orlando , Fl hotels. I wish you the best of luck
In my town ther are only large mega- bakeries and Mom n'Pop bakeries, not much in between. Most hotels don't really have a pastry dept., most of the stuff comes in, and it's usually Garde manger who plates up the stuff and sets up buffets and banquets. Most of the restaurants don't have one, a few of the high end places do though.
With hot food, you need a guy to cook off a steak a'la minute if you want to put out a decent meal. With pastry, you don't. Much more practical and econimical to do stuff in batches, and the product does not suffer.
I really suggest working in "the field" for a year or so to get a true understanding of the pastry biz.
Here's the thing: Who makes more money, a guy who makes a diamond ring or a guy who sells it? Cooking and pastry are production skills, low pay, no national or regional standards/ qualifications to base a pay rate on, Unions don't give a (deleted), never have, never will. Which is probably WHY there are no standards or qualifications for cooks and bakers in the first place.
Sales are where you can make decent money.