i am a pastry chef by trade, and i run a small retail/wholesale/catering business focusing on baked goods (but encompassing more complicated measures within catering projects). i also work part-time as a cook in a local restaurant. i'm essentially their pastry chef without the role in management; i conceive and prepare their desserts and breads from my own recipes cultivated within my business (in addition to whatever hot/cold prep and line work they need). they knew my status as pastry chef/owner of my own business when hired, and this was a motivator in my inclusion on staff as i live in a very small/isolated area and have been cooking locally for 10+ years and my business has been received very well by locals.
the executive chef, a former co-worker of mine from another kitchen, is now asking for my dessert recipes. some of them are very fundamental to my business, and i sell these products wholesale. i did not develop these recipes for this restaurant or under the supervision of anyone there. they are all developed by me and cultivated specifically for my brand. there are plenty of ratios and recipes i readily share, but some are distinct to my brand/ very fundamental to my salability as someone offering unique specialty foods, and i want to keep them to myself (for now anyway-- the business is not even two years old).
my question is this: is it outrageous or unbecoming to say that i do not want to share these recipes? i did not develop these recipes for the restaurant. these were fully developed on my own time. the restaurant in question even held a wholesale account with me before they hired me. now i just make everything with their product on their clock.
am i being unprofessional, or indignant, or am i protecting my brand?
i have been in the industry for about a decade, have worked primarily as a pastry chef for the past four years, and have never been asked for my recipes; they have always come with me and left with me.
how do you feel, as professional pastry chefs, about this? i could really use some guidance. i don't want to be unreasonable or shirk the standards of what is the industry norm, but this is about my brand, which (with enough hard work) i plan on having to sustain me well beyond my time at this particular restaurant.
thoughts? opinions? experiences?
thank you all so much in advance for any input. it is very much needed and appreciated.