We've worked with chefs to develop a list of the top 10 skills that will help prepare you for a successful career as a chef, the willingness to learn. So, let's take a look at these 10 key features that will help in a chef's work. The kitchen is often referred to as the symbiosis of science and art. A chef may be well educated and have brilliant culinary skills, but creating impressive dishes also requires developed creativity.
It's a constant struggle with established rules and an attempt to go beyond the usual limits, a craving for culinary experiments and a desire to surprise. The teachers of the profession try to prepare even the most common dishes with a signature touch, bringing a little bit of their personality and creativity. A true chef, like a good artist, must be guided by creative freedom, without fear of leaving his comfort zone. Serving dishes in the food industry plays a very important role and that's where creativity should focus in the first place.
A chef's workday is far from being anything like an entertaining Gordon Ramsay show. It's hard and tiring work that requires enormous endurance and perseverance. It is not superfluous to also recall a longer working day compared to many other professions. A person who is ready to put up with it and who is able to endure all the difficulties of work with ease should be carried away by something.
A chef's burning eyes are the best guarantee that he won't stagnate and stay still. Only passion will drive a chef to spend years honing his skills, learning and applying new techniques and recipes. If a chef has no passion, it will become increasingly difficult for him to keep up to date, which means that the chances of success in the profession will diminish. From early morning until late at night, the chef spends his working day on his feet.
This can be a challenge even for people in good physical shape. In busy restaurants, it's not uncommon for a chef to spend more than 12 hours preparing food for diners. All that time is spent constantly working with kitchen utensils, mixing ingredients and moving between the stove and the tables. Dexterity and agility will help maintain such a high pace of work.
You could compare cooking to science and art working together simultaneously. Honed skills are required for inspired cooking, but the applications of these techniques are what make for impressive dishes. Some of the best chefs let their personality and creativity shine in every dish they create, something you should also keep in mind. You'll find that being a chef requires a lot of hard work and determination.
You have longer hours than other professions, so having a deep-seated passion for the craft is essential to your success. This same desire will drive him to continue refining his skills and improving, seeking new techniques and recipes to keep up with constantly changing trends. A chef without passion isn't going to be very successful. Even in the seemingly most mundane tasks of preparing and creating food, passion has to play a complex role.
You have to be able to cope with the long hours and the fast pace of the environment. In higher-volume restaurants, it's not uncommon for chefs to spend more than 12 hours a day preparing food for customers. This is a testament to the need for dexterity and endurance, as this time is mainly spent using utensils, mixing ingredients and moving around. Every chef you've ever seen or recognize commits to this high level of expectations every time they set foot in the kitchen.
You should never skimp on the quality of the food you prepare, even if you must take into account budgetary limitations. This is where, instead, you'll use your creativity to get the best ingredients, but present them in a way that doesn't put a strain on your financial expenses and still dazzle customers. Nowadays, there is no excuse for this type of environment to exist. In fact, if there is a hostile environment of not taking prisoners, be prepared to receive a visit from the local Department of Labor.
The new generation of sous chefs and chefs are responsible for changing the perception that others have about life in the kitchen. We must ensure that future employees and the general public learn that “Hell's Kitchen” is a bad dream; that is not how kitchens are and should not be in the 21st century. The chef knows their recipes, their yields, their workmanship, their mother sauces and much more, but he goes further with creativity. Thinking about the culinary arts, not recipes, is this chef's vision of success.
Specials are rarely repeated, but instead reinvented to show the chef's passion for art and personal growth. Yes, we all know that there is no “me” in the team. It takes a team to create a thriving restaurant environment, which starts with excellent leadership skills. It's more than just telling your team that they're doing a great job or that they may need to improve.
It involves the chef having impeccable communication skills with both FOH and BOH, and delegating the thousands of tasks that need to be done to the right team members in the right way. A true chef is a team builder, not an equipment excavator. Leadership is the glue of a great chef and a successful restaurant. Many great chefs may have the necessary culinary skills, but they lack the leadership skills needed for years of continued success and growth.
There is by no means an established definition of a perfect chef, but the balance of skills and qualities is what makes a chef a great chef in today's restaurant. A chef with top-notch culinary skills who lacks creativity, leadership, or delegation skills will do nothing for the growth of any restaurant. Yes, years of training and experience are essential, but not all chefs are able to acquire all the skills needed to be successful. If you are a chef looking for the best in your kitchen, remember to keep your feet on the ground and always learn new techniques and perfect the ones you already have.
And finally, never think that you are a one-person team. There have been many line cooks who have become executive chefs, Michelin-starred chefs and other great award-winning chefs who will tell you that, at one point in the line, another great chef was their educator and mentor, and was the driving force behind their success. Every day you'll rub shoulders with preparatory cooks, chefs de partie, boulangers, potagers, subchefs, executive chefs and more. The chef sets the tone and atmosphere of the kitchen, the dishes are his music, his cooks are his orchestra and the chef is the conductor, setting the right rhythm.
What differentiates a chef from a cook can be disputed by many, but most will agree that a chef directs the kitchen and the menu at all times. .