1.2.08

Do you want to be a Celebrity Chef?



Yet another day that I started off reading all my emails and the articles in MSN. And one caught my eye.. It says "Why we've had enough of Celebrity Chefs?"
Wonder if you have noticed the increasing number of people giving up their better paying jobs for an apprentice chef's. I am one of them. Most of us are sick of our boring office jobs and needed this switch to a dynamic chef job. What I find surprising is a rising trend of people who made this switch because they were inspired by a celebrity chef. For a while, it seems like being a chef means attaining stardom and one can be rich and famous without having to look good.
Well to all you out there who are still inspired by what you deem chef job to be through Food Network programmes, let me tell you the truth. Chef work is tough. And VERY tough. You have to get used to working more than 12 hours a day standing on your feet. That includes carrying a pot that could easily weigh over 5kgs without the 7 litres of soup that you have to cook in it later. Learning to cook is fun. And that also means cuts and burns almost everyday at work.
Usually a chef starts work at 8 to prepare for lunch service which runs from 12 to 3. And dinner service is usually double the amount of work. Imagine preparing about 100 plates of salads for the entire 6 to 11 (if you are lucky). Mind you, most restaurants sits more than 100. On top of that, your head or sous chef will be breathing down your neck if you have too many back orders and your food is not up to restaurant standard. Yes... think Gordon Ramsey's swearings...
If the last order for food is at 10. The larder section sends out the last order at 15 min past 10pm. Add another one hour for the mains. Another hour till the pastry gets the order. (That's assuming a rational customer who doesn't take 2 hours for a main course). So you can see.. the poor people at the pastry section usually go home at midnight or way past that.
Chefs work on 7 shifts a week. One shift means working during a lunch or dinner service. So one could easily do lunch and dinner shifts for 3 days in a row. That is starting at 8 all the way to 11 in the night. Of course you get 3 hours break in between. But seriously one needs to be made of iron (rust proof) to be a chef.
Still want to be a chef?

9 comments:

Earvin said...

I secretly want to be a chef too!

footiam said...

It's okay if you are happy doing all these hard work!

SheR. said...

Good luck to you Earvin.
Of course I love my job. I'm just trying to dissuade those who want to be a chef because they think they can be a celebrity. I don't. Been wanting to be a baker since I was 15. Got a chef job along the way but I love both jobs.

Anonymous said...

Hi there. So where is it you worked at before? Thanks for enlightening me on how tough it is to be in this industry. The truth hurts but we all need to hear it. You think there's ever a chance to set up an eatery where workers, chefs and customers can all have fun?

Amelia
http://curiousfoodie.wordpress.com

SheR. said...

I worked in a bakery and 3 restaurants in London. Unfortunately for an FNB establishment, the most important part is discipline. Due to the huge amount of work each day, discipline in oneself is vital. My head chefs are very nice (they are exceptions). Fun is strictly defined to mean happy in this context. How everything works in a kitchen all boils down to the Head Chef. If he behaves like Hitler, you'll expect a military kitchen. :P

Amelia said...

Wow, I'd love to work in a bakery. Yeah I guess discipline is needed in most jobs, especially in the service industry. I just know I'm going to learn a lot more from you Sher, thank you so much. :)

Amelia

SheR. said...

Now Amelia you are making me blush. Nono.. I'm still learning.. can't wait to start working as a chef/baker again. Everyday is a learning experience as far as I'm concerned. All you need is Passion for the job :)

Amelia said...

Well let us keep learning from one another then. :) Happy Chinese New Year!

SheR. said...

Thanks! :) Cooking the dinner now!