Tips on Becoming a Professional Chef

If you love to cook and you want to make it your profession, becoming a cook is the best and most rewarding job for you can pursue. It isn’t easy though, it involves long hours, physical labour and some competition, but it is a very rewarding career, especially if you love what you do. You might even become a manager at a restaurant, or open your own chain in the future. But it all starts with training and education.

Professional Chef

Get a Job at a Restaurant

Your first job at a restaurant will be a good way to know what the industry is like, what the competition is like, and how it feels to work long hours in a kitchen. You might even start as a waiter and move your way up into the kitchen, where you can work and gain experience, while studying towards a qualification.

Practice at Home

Cooking is something that you can do from almost anywhere. You can cook at home when you have free time, as it is a different environment than in a restaurant. You can test different food techniques and learn what your skills and strengths are. Get familiar with as many foods as you can. You can also practice cooking for other people, hosting small dinner parties and inviting friends over to taste your cooking.

You Need to Have a Passion

It is important to have a passion for what you do. Culinary arts are a specific career field and not everybody can become a professional chef. Visit good restaurants to get a feel for what they offer. You can see how they are run and get tips and advice from managers. Read reviews and stay on top of the latest trends.

Get a Qualification

Enroll in a culinary arts program. Although you don’t need a forma qualification to become a chef, studying can give you the advantage you need to rise above the competition. Most programs will offer you the best in food preparation, nutrition, sanitary food preparation and techniques like butchery and pastry making.

Apply for an Internship

Some programs will have relationships with restaurants and they will be able to help you find an internship. If you find an internship, take it. You will continue to learn and acquire new skills so that you can put it in your resume.

Get Certified

The American Culinary Federation (ACF) offers a generalized certification as well as certifications in specialized areas, like pastry making. A certification from the ACF will help you to differentiate you from other candidates trying for the same job.

Lorien Roux is an entrepreneur and writer for Macadams, specialzing in professional bakery and restaurant equipment.

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