What Do You Need To Succeed In Your Career As A Chef?

chefCooking is one of the best hobbies to engage into. Being able to make something spectacular from scratch to come up with creative dishes gives us an awesome feel. I remember the first time I made a meal on my own, it was scrambled egg and you can imagine how it felt. I used to keep my mom company whenever she was in the kitchen and I could never let my eyes off the cooker until she was done. This is where I got my inspiration and as time passed by, I realized this is what I was meant to be, a cook. However, for those of you who aspire to engage in culinary arts, it’s good to know that this is not a walk in the park as it involves physical labor, long working hours, and heavy competition, but, the results are rewarding. Here is how you can succeed in this career:

 

Enrolling in a culinary arts institution

Joining a cooking school is not a bad idea. This is where my career begun. Even though I could make numerous creative dishes, I knew that joining a culinary art school could give me a leg-up to becoming a chef and getting hired in a good restaurant. There are numerous programs offered at these schools and you can gain more skills.

Create a pretty resume

By a pretty resume, I don’t mean decorating your resume with all sorts of colors and formats. I mean coming up with an outstanding and job winning resume. Resume writing is such a crucial skill and if you are not sure of your resume writing skills, you need to get an expert do it for you. There are numerous experts capable of crafting numerous resume ranging from resumes for medical receptionist to a high ranking manager resume. I had a friend who was a teacher and she wanted to apply for a job as a substitute teacher, she hired an expert and got an awesome substitute teacher resume that instantly got her the job. To get a cooking job, come up with a resume that presents you as qualified, even if you are a self-taught cook; make a resume that represents you well.

Get a job at a restaurant

Whether you are still in school or not, if you are interested in culinary arts, you need to get exposure to the techniques, conditions, and conditions that surrounds the work. Your first job must not be prestigious. You can apply as a server at your local restaurant since experience is very important in this field. As for me, I started by helping my colleague in his café and that helped me a lot.

Practice at home

Cooking in a restaurant is different from cooking at home, but you need to familiarize yourself with numerous foods and techniques, knives, and other kitchen equipment.

Have a passion for cooking

Not just anyone can become a cook. It takes passion and dedication in flavors, trends, and awareness of the competition to succeed in this career. I used to regularly read cooking magazines, restaurant reviews, profiles of head cooks, and any other literature related to culinary arts to gain a deep understanding of the field. To some people, this is boring but if you have the passion, it is very fun. Besides, what can be more fun than doing what you love doing most?

Well, in conclusion, even as you climb up the ladder, to remain there you need to keep abreast of the latest food trends and keep your culinary skills sharp. Whether it’s the right time or not, you will find yourself being promoted to an executive or even end up opening up a branch of your own. All the best!

Great Food Recipes Using Alcohol That I Love Cooking As A Chef

Cake made with alcoholA lot of people are familiar with desserts that have booze such as the obvious brandy soaked Christmas pudding or the Irish cream cheesecake. I love how my guests look so surprised when I tell them that the starter they have just enjoyed has some alcoholic ingredient. Alcoholic recipes are interesting to cook and fun to serve and cooking using alcohol opens up a whole lot of possibilities.
While cooking using alcohol, much of it burns off, leaving only the flavor but not its intoxicating effects although the degree to this is still controversial, so it’s important to use your own judgment when cooking for young kids or those people who are intolerant to gluten found in most beers.
There are so many recipes out there for cooking with alcohol; however, here are my favorites. You can try them at home too.
Pernod, the liquor has some ‘Marmite’ about it and most people love and hate it in equal measure. Personally I don’t mind either drinking it straight, but I have realized that it adds some unusual flavors in food. Oyster’s Rockefeller is a famous Cajun starter, often associated with New Orleans, but I prefer making it with crab. You will need to buy the best crab you can, since a meat that is less flavored may be overpowered by the other ingredients. This recipe can also be substituted with shrimp.
Bourbon gives faint flavors of caramel, vanilla, charcoal and some light tastes of wood to all your recipes. These flavors are great in both savory and sweet dishes.
Vodka is not just meant for making vodka mixed drinks! Although it has subtle flavors, when used in cooking, it adds some depth to some dishes, one of my favorite being pasta sauces. For a creamy delicious meal, go easy on the tomatoes.
Wine makes really great tasty chicken. Cooking it at very slow temperatures makes it really tender in a slightly sweet cider sauce that’s complemented by some slight salty and peppery dumplings.
Cooking with beer is also great especially Guinness! Nothing beats a tasty Guinness and some steak pie. However, I usually buy more than double the amount needed for cooking since most of it ends in other peoples glasses especially if I’m busy cooking! You can also use leftovers with smoked cheddar cheese which is really tasty.
The art of combining food and alcohol in one dish is really brilliant; there’s is very little room for mistakes when combining these two things. Plus you cannot trade the look on your guest faces when you finally tell them that they are eating whiskey or vodka for their dinner.
Is the alcohol used in cooking food burn off?

Contrary to what most people belief, the alcohol we add to dishes does not completely burn off during cooking. The amount that is retained in a finished dish is usually determined by some factors such as the amount of alcohol added; the heat used while cooking and the cooking and standing time as well as the physical dimensions of the cookware.

If you just want to show off, then flambé is the best way, but if you want to cut back the total amount of alcohol on the finished dish, then the best thing is to simmer or bake the mixture in a large pan that is uncovered for longer periods of time.

The Best Hair Care Tips For Chefs

A chef with nice looking hairBeing a chef, you are exposed to a lot of high temperatures, be it in the summer or in the winter, because you spend most of your time in the kitchen. Hair is a focal part of everybody’s life since it’s among the first things people notice when you meet them for the first time, so as a chef, you should try to get the best hair care you can afford every day.
One thing you should always bear in mind is that the right hair care products will keep your hair looking healthy. The benefits of having beautiful hair cannot be underestimated and I am sure everyone loves to have a beautiful mane. It really feels great to have beautiful shiny hair. Here are some tips that will help you take care of your hair even when you are always in the kitchen.
Protect your hair.
Since as a chef you are always wearing a hat in the kitchen, make sure you have another one to wear when you get out of the kitchen. Avoid exposing your hair to dust, heat and the sun’s rays. Unhealthy eating, pollution and heat can easily damage your hair. Additionally, avoid brushing your hair especially when it’s wet. Wait for it to dry, then you can comb.
Apply Hair masks
Make your own hair masks and use them on your hair since they contain natural and healthy components that provide your hair with nutrients for healthy growth. Use egg yolk, olive oil, baking soda and lime juice to make your homemade hair mask. For better hair growth, use the mask once in a week.
Use shampoo, conditioner, and oil but
It’s very vital that you wash your hair at least twice a week. Use a shampoo that is best for your hair type. For instance, if you have dry hair, it is recommended that you use a shampoo that is only meant for dry hair. After washing your hair, you can use a conditioner then apply your favorite oil. However, you should avoid excessive use of any of these products since they may end up damaging your hair. You can wash your hair with shampoo thrice a week, but apply the conditioner and oil only twice in a week

Avoid strong shampoo
If you really want beautiful hair, then you must make an informed choice when picking your shampoo. If you have oily hair, then pick shampoo for oily hair so that it can be effective. There are so many hair treatment products in the market, but do not just buy them because they are being sold. Know exactly what your hair requires, and get just that. Ensure you also check the ingredients used in making the hair products you are buying.

Eat healthy

Hair is an extension of your body and if your body is lacking in any of the essential minerals, your mane will start to lose its shine and appear dull and boring since it’s the mirror of your health. A regular trim is also vital as it prevents split and damaged ends. For good maintenance, a trim every 6-8 weeks is recommended. Drink plenty of water- about 4 liters a day.

I hope the above tips will help you get your desired hair.

How One Should Groom For A Chef Job Interview

a well groomed chefAn interview is one of those rare occasions where one should really be careful on their grooming. One slight grooming mistake can lead to loss of opportunity. Good grooming creates a good impression towards the interviewer and increases your chances of landing a job. Good looking applicants have higher chances of landing a job than somebody who comes for an interview not properly groomed.
For chefs, going for an interview shoddily groomed may be the last time you set your eyes on the interviewer. It’s important that chefs look groomed due to the nature of their job. If you are going for an interview soon, here are some things that you should bear in mind.
Avoid too much perfume
Go slow on the deodorant or perfume – you could be compromising your chances of landing a job if you go for an interview with too much deodorant or perfume. If the interviewer does not like that particular fragrance, then that may mean your chances of getting the job will be narrowed.
It’s advisable that you go for fragrances that are subtle and do not offend the nose. There is a particular site I love that sells great deodorants for women. You can visit the site and check out some of the deodorants they have nice ones before your interview day.

For women, wear makeup
When going for an interview, it’s important that women put on makeup. Studies show that women who wear make up in interviews are likely going to get the job as compared to plain women. However, just remember a little goes a long way. Do not go overboard. Avoid daring or bright colors. If you do not know how to apply makeup, then it would be wise to walk to a department store and ask for one at the beauty corners. Choose your counters wisely. If the beauty artist is too overdone, chances are that they will do the same on you.

Go for a conservative hairstyle
Don’t use excess hair products, and if you have a trending hairstyle, then make it a little bit toned down unless it’s a job in the creative industry. For men, short neat hair always looks great. For long haired men, just tie it at the back so that it looks neat.
For women, you can curl you hair with a good curling wand so that it doesn’t keep coming to your face. Alternatively, you can tie it at the back if you are think you will fiddle with it.

Keep your nails simple
Just like with makeup, bright colors for the nails are a no-no. You can wear a neutral color or simply buff the nails and leave them that way. Ugly cracked nails for a chef job show that you are careless and it’s not hygienic for a person who will always keep handling food.

Watch your mouth
Bad breath is a put off in normal situations, worse still in an interview. Brush your teeth thoroughly and then rinse with a mouth wash. To be safe, carry some mint and pop it when you are almost getting to the interview room. Fresh breath leaves a great impression especially in this industry.
That’s all! All the best in your interview.

My Favorite Fillet Knife

Knives are different just as people are. A knife that works for you may not work for me. It’s all about how you feel and what kind of knife best suits you. Some people are left handed meaning that although they may want to try out some knives, they may just not work for them. 
Kitchen_knifeI personally love the Wushof Flexible Fillet Knife. It’s made in Germany and it comes with a lifetime warranty from the manufacturers. It has a very narrow blade that is great when filleting both small and large fish. Its flexible design is good for moving around small bones in fish without agonizing about breaking them. The knife’s blade is made of high carbon stainless steel alloy and it very easy to sharpen. The handle cannot easily break because it’s made from composite material with a very smooth finish.

The Ergo Chef Pro Series 7.5 is also another great knife. This knife is very flexible and it’s really great for fish filleting. It has a thin blade and a tapered tip that lets you skillfully remove bones from a fish very fast. Although the blade is very thin, it’s strong and durable. The handle is great and easy to work with, and comfortable so you do not strain your hands or wrist.

I have also tried the 7-in. Precision Series Slicing Knife by Calphalon and I must say it is a great knife too! Its handles are uniquely in built and they are labeled so you can easily pick it from a bunch of cutlery. This knife’s blades stay sharper for longer periods when compared to other types of fillet knives and they deliver excellent performance when filleting your fish. It’s especially good if you are filleting big fish although it does an excellent job on small fish.

If you regularly cook whole fish, picking a good fillet knife is critical so as to avoid any kitchen accidents, you can find more top recommendations at inmykitchen.org. A good fillet knife must have a very comfortable handle that can be gripped even when the knife is slippery and a top notch steel blade with good edge retention. This is a knife you always want to stay razor shape.

Things You eat but should not feed your dog with

dogfoodI love to cook, and I love to share the food I cook. When I’m at home, I have no customers to serve. So I sometime want to share my food with my dog. However, some human meals are not good for dogs. Dogs should be fed some specific diet for their meals.

Most dogs love to eat. They particularly love to share our meals. Being a faithful companion, the temptation of feeding our pets with the same food we eat is high. The dogs will comfortably eat our meal. Sincerely, it is not a bad idea to share a meal with your loved pet. However, some foods are not good for dogs. Most important, the dogs should not be fed entirely on human food.

The animals can suffer complications if fed with some human food. Some of the complications may lead to the death of the animals.

Why stick to the right dog food diet 

Our body systems and nutrient needs vary form that of dogs. That is why, people are encouraged to give their dogs the right meal. There are particular combinations of nutrients that are important for dogs that are not available in human food. Feeding the dogs purely on peoples meals can affect their lives and health.

The chemical composition of a dog stomach varies from the human stomach. The level of acidity of the stomach varies. If the dogs eat meals that are not intended for them, they may face challenges associated with chemical reactions of the food and the content of their stomach. Let us go through a number things You eat but should not feed your dog

Avocado 

Avocado contains a chemical substance known as persin. This chemical is toxic to dogs. It may cause mild stomach upsets. If a dog ingests an avocado, it may suffer gastrointestinal track obstruction that will require the attention of a veterinary professional.

Bread dough

The warm nature of the dogs stomach creates an optimized environment for yeast in the dough to expand. The result of the expansion include decreased blood flow to the stomach wall and ultimately death of tissue. In worse scenario, the expanded stomach may squeeze the diaphragm causing breathing difficulties. The formation of alcohol in the process cannot be ignored. Raw bread dough should not be offered to dogs under any condition.

Chocolate 

If you feed your dog chocolate candy, cookies, brownies or any other human meal that contain chocolate, expect the animal to suffer chocolate intoxication. The situation comes as a result of the effect of caffeine and theobromine. The methylxanthines makes the dog have server agitation, muscle tremors, and irregular heart rhythm. In Sevier situation, expect high body temperatures, seizures, and death. If you see signs of restlessness, visit a vet immediately.

Others are: Macadamia nuts, grapes, raisins, hops, ethanol, moldy foods, onions, garlic, and xylitol should not be fed to the dogs. High quantities of these foods are harmful to the dog’s health. If you do not know what is contained in a particular food, do not give it to your pet. If any of the mentioned ingredients are contained in the meal, your pet may suffer adverse effects that may lead to death. It is safe and appropriate to stick to the dog meals.

Cooking on Camping Trip – Finding The Best Survival Knife To Use

chef_knifeWe get this question a lot: “what knife should I use if I don’t want to bring a chef’s knife for camping?”, “how do i pick a “all-in-one knife” that does everything including cooking?”. If you have decided to go camping with your friends, one of the things you should be careful with is the food you eat. Eating bad food can ruin your trip and the best way to avoid this is by cooking your own food. If you like cooking at home, you may find yourself in a confused state since the tools available for helping out in cooking while on a camping site may not be all the same like the ones back at home. For example, at home you use chef’s knife but in this situation you need to learn how to use a knife such as the survival knife. For this reason, it’s good that you make sure that you own one, not only for this trip, but for your individual use later on.

Before you go for the camping event, it is good that you visit a store that specializes in selling knives. Here is what you need to consider when finding the best survival knife that is well suited for cooking while on such an outdoor place as well as selecting the correct one.

There are 3 types of survival knives. If the knife you have ever used is the kitchen knife, then you need to study more because in order to be able to find the best survival knife, you need to know more about what exactly you are looking for. The different types of survival knives are:

  • Multi-tool knives
  • Folding blade survival knife
  • Rigid or fixed survival knife

The rigid or fixed survival knives are the best suited for outdoor activities such as camping. I learned a lot about choosing the right knife for my needs, and let me summarize here. Its strength and durability makes it to be more cost-effective when it comes to the use you will put it through. It’s a round knife that is made using sterner stuff. You can use this knife to create shelter, cut down branches, chop wood, and in some cases looking for food. This knife is invaluable for almost every outdoor activity. But you have to scrutinize the standard of the knife before picking one. You may find some knives having a quality that has been compromised by its additional “trills” you do not need to have. The handle needs to be strong enough to resist the work you will be putting it through without having to break. The steel on the blade needs to be extended on the handle in order to make it competent in withstanding most work without having to break into two.

The other kind of knife you may consider carrying with you is the multi-tool knife. Although this kind of knife is unquestionably not the survival knife that you require, it’s worth having it since it provides several tools in only one handy knife.

Whatever knife you chose at the end, what is important to bear in your mind is actually what you will need your knife to do. For combat, you can read more here. Just remember that your particular survival knife could mean a lot when on a camping tour. Just make sure that you don’t compromise quality with price when choosing the best survival knife for assisting you in cooking while on a camping trip.

Tips When Hiring Server for Up Scale Restaurant

upscaleRestaurantWhen people go into a restaurant, it is simply because it is highly recommended or they have come to try the food out. But the option of coming back is a completely different story since customers don’t come back for the food alone, they come back for the services they received. Did I get comfortable with those who served me? Is the place satisfactory enough for the intended purpose? Is the served food worth the price? Am I completely satisfied by those who served me? Therefore, a restaurant has to provide services that makes it worthy for the customers to come back.

So as to establish and maintain good relations with the clients and in offering great experience, the people you hire and the service they provide play a very big role. It is therefore very important to make sure that you hire the best restaurant servers or staff and provide them with the required training. It is not a simple task to hire the right server. There are some important tips that you have to follow before you hire them.

Write the job description clearly

Many employees face labor and lawsuits concerns because there exist loopholes between the job description crafting and the real work done. Ensure that the job description is written with precision and that you stick with the guidelines of hiring as written. When you do this, the potential applicants are going to have a clear understanding as to what they expect.

Look for job candidates

You look for job candidates by posting ads in websites and newspapers. You can also look for recommendations from friends and family. Make sure that you post the job qualifications and requirements that you need.

Check on the references

Conduct interviews and review the candidates written resumes so as to get more information about them. References are going to offer you with a perspective concerning how people know them and their work ethics.

Review the worthiness of candidates using resume

Check if the candidate has made any particular references to those instances in which he/she has shown innovation and initiative at a workplace before. It is good to look for a candidate who is a team player for this post and in this instant, you can review the resume provided for any reference to experience he /she has had in contributing to the community or captaining a team. You can find a good server resume example here.

Both hiring and retention of employees are very hard tasks to manage. You need to ensure that you set out clearly a working organizational structure and offer the necessary tools so as to meet the expectations of your workers.

Here is a Funny Video on server For you to enjoy!

Hair Style Tips for Chef

chefHairstyle ideas for chefs include varieties of sleek styles and cuts. Hairdos that are medium are always recommended when it comes to the chefs as this will ensure that it does not interfere with the food you are cooking or serving. It is also equally important to get to know the shape of your face for selecting the most flattering hairstyle. You need also to conduct a little research before you jump into any conclusion. Some of the most recommended hairstyles for chefs are straight cuts, bob, curly, sleek and bangs. Having a appropriate hair style is not the entire store. You also need to find the best shampoo and conditioner for your hair.

It is normally a hard task to select from a variety of chef length hairstyles. One of the most everlasting and recommended hairstyles in this category is the classic bob. You can select this design anytime for transforming and enhancing your overall appearance with flamboyance. This is the only style that is well suited for any type of face. More so, it softens your key areas such as jaw line, chin and forehead.

As a chef, the humidity and temperature of the kitchen makes maintaining a fancy hairstyle in place almost impossible. Therefore, another perfect hairstyle for such a job can feature a section on the left side of your head having a deep hair cut blunt in order to make a ledge.

In order to keep the hair out of the face while in the kitchen, the hair that is in the front part can be twisted on top then a bobby pin is placed in the twist. This pin can then be locked in place by inserting another pin across it. For extra caution, a third pin can be placed in parallel with the second pin. You can later remove the pins when your shift ends.

It is also good that you search online for a hair makeover tool or consult a hairdresser to inform you on the most flattering hair style for a chef. You can also decide to peruse through fashion magazines to know the latest trends in that field.