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line seasonings

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
Hi everyone. My first thread. I started this new job at a local Italian restaurant who over the yrs has made a name for itself.
So like a lot of post I've read,starting a new job is never what you expect. I fell like all the cooks are set in there ways and not open for change....I'm not stressing that though, I'm not the chef. He retired I believe.
Back to the thread subject. We use a pretty basic Italian seasoning for almost all dishes(parsley, oregano, s&p, red pepper flakes, garlic pwd). The other guys use shakers for everything. My main question now, is it shady for me to pre blend a general seasoning and adjust for spicy dishes and dishes that don't require much salt. Almost all dishes use a pinch of all six light on pepper flakes.
I know your thinking if it taste right why not. That's how I feel to and I'm constantly tasting but being understaffed, working char, saute, and wheel by myself its f-ing hard. Especially since it makes me turn red when bad food hits the window.
How is the seasoning setup on your line????


Thanks for letting me ramble. I have been getting my butt kicked at work. I got to find shortcuts that don't effect quality. Any advice helps
post #2 of 18

I think the problem with blending would be that some people might not want item x in, allergy to item b, or as the problem with mixing just salt and pepper is, sometimes you need more of one but not the other. If you mixed them, you're still going to need them all there to fine tune the food.

 

Shortcuts are pretty much always going to bring the quality down.

 

If the method has worked before, and the place has already got a good rep, I'd say that you need to stick with the method they have. Maybe find another way to ease the load up. 

post #3 of 18
Thread Starter 
Rep is down. I'm attempting to take what I've learned and bring it up. There has already been a drop in returned dishes since I've been there. They boil everything in wine and say there sauteing. I can work with the greener guys. The old dogs are goin through the motions
I guess I just don't like the shakers. I feel they slow me down and is not the same as a pinch. I agree with the shortcut response.
post #4 of 18
Thread Starter 
So that's the advice I get. Everyone uses salt and pepper shakers on the line? Thanks a whole lot
post #5 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by jwalkjr View Post

How is the seasoning setup on your line????
 

 

A salt container. A pepper container. No shakers. No salt/pepper mix. I use my fingers because I have better feel that way and I can tailor it to special requests if it is kept separate.

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Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
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post #6 of 18
Thread Starter 
Now where getting some chef flayne. Thank you. Original setup and how its done is mix all 6 light on everything but parsley and oregano. That's the mix. No certain recipe FYI. Then shake a lil s&p and gar pwd in every dish. It adds an extra 20 secs approximately to each dish. We all know time is valuable. I started doing it my way with salt in a tub on side so I have control. It worked but still shake shake with everything. I have been losing sleep on this one but I do think I need a separate tub for all of them except maybe blend dry herbs. Like you said more control with the pinch.
I could have my seasoning station behind me and spin with the pan and do the pinch pinch thing. Probably best huh? I have no one I can fell 100% confident with showing me there way. I fell there just earning there paycheck while I'm want to be killer at my job and I do love it. Even with the speed bumps. Thanks guys. Any thoughts are appreciated. PS. Knocked a veal picatta out of the park today. Sorry for spelling it wrong. At least I can cook it. That one was a challenge to get right for me:)
post #7 of 18
Cheflayne is spot on with the finger method. Ive never done it another way, always had my stuff in little bins and never even seen a shaker on the line. How this for a suggestion, bins the s&p, ditch the dry herbs and go to fresh herbs. Not possible to really shake fresh chopped herbs out of a shaker so they have no choice but to use the bins. Garlic, how about minced, in the saute oil you use, dispersed with a really small measure laddle. Slow roasted or garlic confit would be a way to go too, while adding a new dimention to the dishes with garlic. As for the boiling in wine, if your just deglacing how about bottle stoppers that limit a pour to 1/2 ounce. Hope that helps.
post #8 of 18

Everything should be separate and in pinch bowls or 9th pans. Maybe the herbs in one dish but everything else should be separate. Parsley and Oregano could be blended together but they should be fresh! Garlic should be fresh! Nothing worse than an italian restaurant using garlic powder on everything. Teach the guys to properly sauté, too! Quality will drastically increase with just this change. It sounds like you need to hire one more guy too. 

post #9 of 18
Thread Starter 
Thanks everyone. I like the 9's idea. We have a stack in the back I've never seen anyone. Makes me wonder if original chef used them for that purpose.
I am starting to think this all started from me not liking the lack of control with shakers.

I love the idea of fresh everyone....believe me. We do put fresh garlic in most dishes so even mess with powder. Im not sure.

Quality is already down Vic. One month in and I'm full speed damage control. I fell overwhelmed ( part of the job) and try to do what I can every minute I'm allowed to be on the clock. How to I tell these guys with 15 to 20 yrs on the line that there not doing it right. I like to keep the team strong. I kind of rely on it to survive the rush. I'm 26 with 3 yrs cookin to be generous and a lot of hard work experience There procedure are definitely off.

Or do I just hope they catch on.

If a true Italian chef ( or chef with true experience in the cuisine)walked in my kitchen I would be ashamed and not want to take ownership. I don't like the feeling
post #10 of 18

I've used bar garnish containers for this, smaller than 9th pans, not as deep so you can get your fingers in.

Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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post #11 of 18
Thread Starter 
I did the same thing at the house. Salt pepper sugar etc. Good point.
Is it typical for line setups change service to service and cook to cook? I'm always changing to find efficiency I guess.
post #12 of 18

I've only worked in a couple of places, but I haven't seen these anywhere else. Excuse me if its a common thing and I'm just ignorant about it.


When I worked Italian, we had kind of drop wells in front of the flat top, where all the ala minute pastas were made. They were the perfect size for four 9pans to be slotted in to. We had salt, pepper, chilli paste, garlic paste (literally just pureed garlic and olive oil, made in house), capers, anchovies, chilli flakes and garlic slices. Regular spoons in everything other than salt and pepper. Was very fast as it required almost no movement from you to season with whatever, as it was right at where you were cooking.

 

Obviously I don't know if you can get anything like this, but it gives you some food for thought hopefully.

 

If you're serious about the job, you might need to get thinking of a way to replace the old timers who are set in their ways too. As hard as it might be, it needs to be a consideration.

post #13 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by jwalkjr View Post

I did the same thing at the house. Salt pepper sugar etc. Good point.
Is it typical for line setups change service to service and cook to cook? I'm always changing to find efficiency I guess.

It can be.

I like my setup my way, other cooks like it theirs.

Whatever makes you most efficient.

Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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post #14 of 18
Thread Starter 
Great food for thought. As far as it goes with the old timers. All I can do is setup my area and cook my food. If they follow great. If not hopefully the owner(ex-wife of the guy who started the restaurant) makes necessary change. I can work with the younger guys so if owner puts me in the top spot I could do it with 2 guys with a couple of yrs in and good ethics.
post #15 of 18

To be honest i feel like if i stood there shaking a shaker for a few minutes and or seconds it wuld be a waste of time , thats why i just use a pinch. Really no need to pre-mix the spices i would just taste , taste , and taste , till i felt the dish was right. Usually i keep alot of tasting spoons on my station just to do that. Also ditch the garlic powder because garlic should be fresh as stated before.

I agree with the pans idea 100%. 

 

Also i would try maybe some new spice blends , you know things that can elevate a dish. If you use basically the same spices for everything the dishes may just seem boring. 

Also since this is an italian place try making some traditional homemade fresh pastas ( we do this alot at my place) it gives people some work to do , you make alot ( even more then necessary ) and they can be frozen to be used for later if needed. Also fresh sugo and or ragu also elevates a dish even more. 

 

Well thats my 2 cents ill give more input when i get more opinions XD . 

Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.

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Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.

Dr.Seuss

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post #16 of 18

I think as a line cook, you should stick to the recipe, or what it calls for. That shows more about you as a cook than a poorly seasoned dish!

post #17 of 18

Reminds me of when a restaurant changed owners and they brought their Chef in.

He noticed that we dusted the French toast with powdered sugar using a flour sifter, the type with the crank on the side.

We would plate the toast, grab the sifter and one shake, boom, done.

He said that was all wrong and he would get us a dredge (shaker).

The first day with it he is spending 30 seconds repeatedly shaking and smacking the bottom of the shaker to get the same amount of sugar as we got in 2 seconds.

Some things don't need to be proper to be the best way to do them.

Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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post #18 of 18
Thread Starter 
Cool input guys. I tried my new seasonong setup tonight. Was nervous about trying the change last night being Friday crazy time bust and all. I still don't have it dialed in for best results but much better then before.
So here's what I did. Salt pepp in 9's. Parsley 60ish % oregano40% mixed in deep 6
Red pepper in a shaker no top on it. Gar pwd in its own shaker.
I'd also will gladly say I'm a rebel on my line by not using the gar pwd. Fresh is in most dishes anyway. As far as saute technique's go, I'll will train who wants to learn.

Also. I like the idea il of different blend but pwr violence is right. Don't think I should deviate from the recipe.

Gm took off weekend. Added extra crazyness. I'm dog tired from the rush. Catch ya later
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