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Aspiring Cook/Chef

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

Hi, everyone. I'm new to the forum and would like to say hello.

 

I'm an aspiring cook/chef who has NOT gone through culinary school.

That being said, I do know my french cuts for vegetables, my mother sauces, proper knife usage and care, my heat methods, my roux, and pretty much most basics when it comes to prep and method. I do NOT have experience in a professional kitchen but it has always been my passion to work with food. I grew up relatively poor and didn't have the funds to attend college or culinary school, and now in my mid 20's I still have no way to do so. Given that massive problem, I have been wondering what all I should learn further before entering a kitchen working the line. 

 

I do have a knife roll I've slowly filled with solid tools for the trade, so at least that is taken care of.

 

I have no visions of grandeur or "Top Chef" stardom. I just want to work with food and pursue my passion.

 

I just need to figure out what all I can be self taught before trying my hand at moving forward. I would like to enter a kitchen with a solid grasp of all aspects. If anyone could point me in a direction for great resources it would be amazing. Youtube can only teach you so much (ive been watching videos of actual culinary classes and lectures)

post #2 of 12

Sounds like you have the drive and want to do well by self-teaching. Have you considered an internship to get some footing? Perhaps an internship can lead to a paid position and/or further your advancement in commercial kitchens? Some places will offer assistance for classes, at least a food safety class like ServSafe. There are a lot of resources on ChefTalk that can probably help you with getting into a place near you. Keep us posted on your progress!

Invention, my dear friends, is ninety-three percent perspiration, six percent electricity, four percent evaporation, and two percent butterscotch ripple

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Invention, my dear friends, is ninety-three percent perspiration, six percent electricity, four percent evaporation, and two percent butterscotch ripple

My Author Page

Reply
post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Berman View Post

Sounds like you have the drive and want to do well by self-teaching. Have you considered an internship to get some footing? Perhaps an internship can lead to a paid position and/or further your advancement in commercial kitchens? Some places will offer assistance for classes, at least a food safety class like ServSafe. There are a lot of resources on ChefTalk that can probably help you with getting into a place near you. Keep us posted on your progress!

Thanks for the kind words Jim. I'd love to find somewhere to intern, it's just very hard keeping up with bills when you are working somewhere and not getting paid at all. If you have any resources for me to check out of love to look and see what I can do to further my career and opportunities.
post #4 of 12

Dude ... I've never seen a Community College without a financial aid department. They've got people in there who's job it is to get you free or nearly free money. If you can't afford school ... go on the dime that's out there for you. All you've gotta do is fill out forms. It ain'te rocket surgery. 

post #5 of 12

If money is an issue and you REALLY want to work the industry, I would definitely do what @Jim Berman said and try to get an internship. If not then, get a foot in the door like we all have to and get a prep/dishwasher job on top of the job you already have. (more money for you and accumulate experience)

 

I would also give what @IceMan has said a try and go to your local community college and ask about scholarships, grants and possible loans.

 

However, IMHO I would stick to the real world experience until you truly need to go to school for anything.

 

I wish you well and would love to know how you do :) 

post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the encouragement guys! It really means a lot!
post #7 of 12


Honestly brother, I'm on sauce i work sauce at the restaurant i am currently at. you sound like you have done amazing with all of your learning. i would just say to go to a local higher end restaurant and go for it. build your resume. take picture of your food and show them. The restaurant i am currently at is the first restaurant that i have ever worked for. in my interview i told my interviewer (who was also the owner) my goals and aspirations, what i wanted to do,what i currently knew. and i explained to her what it meant for me to enter into the culinary industry. 

You miss 100 percent of the shots you don't take. remember to listen to your chef. when you get your job because i know you will. be humble, and never loose sight of your dream. if you don't take yourself seriously, no one else will. by the sounds of it any kitchen will be lucky to have you.

 

Austin

post #8 of 12


satue*

post #9 of 12
Sauté ****
post #10 of 12

Hey man listen anyone who tells you, you need to go to culinary school in order to start off in a kitchen is downright wrong. I started off in a wonderful kitchen washing dishes and got canned one month in. My next job was at a dive bar and two weeks down the owner told me "cooking isn't for you, find something else". I spent a year wasting time thinking I needed to go to culinary school before I even tried. eventually I just went for it applied somewhere and got hired as a line cook. I worked hard, as hard as I could push myself, made sure I cleaned every inch I could reach and watched those around me. Oh and I asked a hundred questions a day. "How would you do this... or Why did you do that way." Hell man, I've even asked a cook how he would cut a bell pepper because I thought my way was too slow. Ask! and LISTEN. Most will tell you once maybe even twice but after that we start to think you don't care enough to pay attention. Also act professional, remember even though we are an industry full of rejects and scoundrels, we are still some of the toughest m-fer's out there. You have to be willing to hurt in this profession. I highly recommend "Kitchen Confidential" by Anthony Bourdain. Then go for it. It's that simple.   

post #11 of 12

Yeah ... Everyone should follow the directions of Anthony Bourdain. Boo-Hoo. Is this for me or not?!? Boo-Hoo. Sob. Weep. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I think I'm gonna puke.

post #12 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by IceMan View Post
 

Yeah ... Everyone should follow the directions of Anthony Bourdain. Boo-Hoo. Is this for me or not?!? Boo-Hoo. Sob. Weep. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I think I'm gonna puke.


We're gonna need more towels!

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