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new to flat top

post #1 of 2
Thread Starter 
Hi everyone, im new to ChefTalk and I've been working as a line cook for about a year now..I spent several months at the salad and desert station at one job now I am a line cook at chili's. The difference between my first line cook job to my second line cook job is huge, common sense considering the fact I went from working for a small family owned business to being on the line at a corporate restaurant. So much more demand, so much more business and it gets easily overwhelming. I do enjoy cooking and I believe it's all about being clean, neat, and organized along with communication and teamwork. Unfortunately we lack a lot of that at my new job but for someone with no culinary experience I believe I go above and beyond compared to my coworkers who have been here for several months to a year(I'm going on my 3rd month) anyway!.. I went from "zone 2"(pre-impinger.. nachos, enchiladas,quesa's, ribs, pastas, etc) to now being a flat top cook. I was very good at zone 2 simply because time management was easy once I got used to it and I just had to remember what went on everything and how to plate it. I've been on flat top for less than a week and on the Friday and Saturday and Sundays we get absolutely slammed with business. Comes with the nature of the job, i know. But I've really been struggling with temperatures such as differentiating rare from mid rare and medium from medium well. Remembering the builds for my burgers is the biggest struggle especially when I get holds/mods and I have 15 orders on the screen and a flat top overwhelmed with burgers and steaks. What are techniques or methods I can use to make my nights more fluent as a flat top cook? Every one keeps saying once I remember the builds for burgers by heart it will be allot less stressful and difficult to manage, and by the time that day comes I will be able to "eye out" or "feel out " the temps. I'm sure it's true and I'm sure I'm going to be fine but with no experience on flat top and no training whatsoever it can be a hell of a way to lose sleep knowing I'm going in tomorrow night to get absolutely overwhelmed with orders on my station. Any recommendations,advice, tips and tricks would be appreciated! Thanks
post #2 of 2

Welcome to cheftalk.  Keep at it and things will become better with time.  You might suggest to your supervisor that you may need help while you train at your new position.  You get good in the kitchen the same way you get to play on the

grand ol opry, practice practice practice.  Don't lose sleep you will do fine.  Do you use a thermometer to temp your burgers?  

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