How to become a Chef

The humble Chef is master of all things food and business. They must have great people skills and also be organized. Most importantly, it's all about the customers. It's a tough job but it's a fulfilling career.

So how do you become a Chef? Here are steps to becoming a working Chef.

FIND A JOB WORKING IN A RESTAURANT KITCHEN
Knowing how the kitchen and restaurant works is vitally important to becoming a chef. But be warned, this first job might include the most mundane things, including washing dishes and taking out the trash. However, the exposure to professionals in the kitchen is what matters, and over time a fresh new chef will work their way up the ladder to the more appealing tasks. This time toiling in the trenches of kitchen duty will help answer the big question: Is this what you really want to do?

GET A HIGH SCHOOL DIPLOMA OR GED
In order to move on to culinary school, a high school diploma will be required. It might also be required by employers, who could prefer to hire only those who have already shown they can stick with a dream and complete it. Remember that even most apprenticeship programs require a high school diploma or GED to get in, so earn this very important diploma

GO TO CULINARY SCHOOL
Culinary schools take one to four years, depending on the program. The most common result is the diploma, associate or bachelor’s degree – master’s culinary degrees are scarce in the United States. While formal education isn’t required to become a chef, the specialized knowledge and skills learned during the program can serve aspiring chefs in good stead when honing their kitchen work. Often those who have earned their culinary degree can quickly earn positions with greater responsibilities – always a plus for any chef.

OBTAIN PRACTICAL WORK EXPERIENCE
The formal culinary program is just the beginning. Working as a chef requires a great deal of experience, which is why fresh graduates probably won’t immediately begin working as a chef. Additional training under the tutelage of a professional chef, whether it’s through an internship or apprenticeship or simply through day-to-day work, will heighten the skills and knowledge every chef needs. As an added bonus, work experience is a great networking opportunity.

CERTIFICATION
Certification isn’t required to become a chef, but it may make it easier, especially when applying for highly competitive chef positions. Certifications may help market a chef’s cooking ability, as well as potentially lead to more opportunities for advancement. The American Culinary Federation (ACF), founded in 1929, is the largest professional chefs and cooks association in the United States, with over 17,000 members in 200 chapters nationwide. There are 14 certification designations available in five areas: Cooking Professionals; Personal Cooking Professionals; Baking and Pastry Professionals; Culinary Administrators; and Culinary Educators. Each designation is based on a candidate’s educational and work experience.

Source: http://www.learnhowtobecome.org/chef/


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