Cheffy Babble #1
In my not-so-illustrious career I wish I could have worked under a Gordon Ramsey, Rick Bayless, Charlie Trotter, Adrian Ferran, Martin Chiffers, Gerhard Keegan or any of the other million great chefs that rock the culinary world.
I have worked under some very great chefs don’t get me wrong, it is so cool when you find someone that thinks on the cutting edge or is hell bent on leather in creating his own edge. That kind of passion motivates me…
I’m just a freaking cook.
From the dish tank at Campus Inn in Ann Arbor, to chief cook/bottle washer in small Twenty-seater Mom and Pop dive in Michigan, into being an Executive Chef in some decent sized hotels, B&B’s in the southeast. To getting my ass beat more than more often than not in Conference Centers and Catering Facilities across this nation of ours over the past twenty years plus. I’m still just a freaking cook.
The cooks’ world is a community of some very insane people that thrive on passion, speed, love, hate, the sense of urgency, an uncanny sense of humor, and perhaps some of the meanest people that you can meet in the heat of the moment.
This is who we are and what we do…
Just freakin’ magicians that dress funny…
The kitchen is a battlefield. Either your team gets along or they don’t. They learn how to dance or they wind up standing there lost in a world they may not belong in. I have worked with (and once upon a time been) the kid that knew all there was to know but has freaked out totally when they stepped foot in a REAL kitchen with REAL cooks only to realize how ignorant they really are. REAL cooks are freaking animals…
In life, as culinarians, we make a whole lot of choices in our professional career. Some of us live in the mediocrity of just having a job, and then there are those of us that eat, sleep, and drink talking about food, these are the warriors!!! Simple people that take food very seriously and are always on the quest for new flavors, textures, colors, presentations, methods, systems----whoa!!! .now that’s life!! Chungachungabam baby!
Every chef has a story about some CIA, JW or FCI intern that has just simply amazed us with the misinterpretation of what they thought a REAL kitchen was about and the poor kid is totally lost… And then there have been a chosen few that motivated the chef because of their passion to learn and their passive submissiveness of clinging onto every word and questioning things they didn’t understand… These are the people I want next to me when I am going down in the heat of passion!!!
Why Waltz When You Can Rock and Roll?
I want the individual that is constantly seeking methods, answers, developing flavors, textures, techniques, simplifying this thing they call a life/profession. How can I be faster? What did or didn’t I do right? What was up with communication tonight? What issues do I need to address? Man, I need to talk to Chef…
For those of us serious about food,
This, my friend, is true motivation and stimulation.
You can not lie your way into a job in our profession. You can not lie about food or capabilities period-we’ll know in 43 minutes or less (and sometimes much less) if you were feeding us a line of bull. If you survive an evening successfully you may have found your next family.
“…Those who know not,
And know that they know not,
I can teach…
The ones that know not;
And know not that they know not,
Bruce Lee- The Tao of Jeet Kune Do
A fed horse needs to run like hell, you have been fed the book of knowledge, now let’s see what you do with the “application of ass-whoopin’” that the REAL kitchen gives hundreds of thousands of cooks in our nation on a daily basis.
It’s Pass or Fail and failure is never an option.
Then, In Walks The Bloody Cook…
No Passion, No Love!!!!