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The complex system of kitchen organization was developed by Georges Auguste Escoffier, who largely is credited with modernizing the grand hotel dining in Europe in the late 1800s. Previously, grand dining involved large buffets of food where guests served themselves; Escoffier simplified menus and served each course sequentially.
The demands of a luxury hotel's guests meant that Escoffier was tasked with serving lavish meals in a short amount of time, so he needed to
organize the kitchen in a way to get food out quickly without hurting its quality. Using his experience in the French Army, Escoffier developed brigade de cuisine, an exhaustive system with clear authority and responsibility. The system is still largely in use in restaurants today, with more formal kitchens retaining the French terms.
In a typical kitchen's chain-of-command, the chef de partie would be the third in charge, following the head chef, also known as the executive chef, and the sous chef. In this management position, a chef de partie would need to be comfortable taking orders from the head chef while managing his or her own staff. This is not typically an entry-level position as it requires culinary expertise and the ability to work independently. For a newcomer to the professional kitchen the culture and rules are as much a mystery as they should be adhered to. Many of these
unsaid rules relate to hierarchy in the kitchen. Known as the Brigade de Cuisine, the following list denotes who comes where in the domain of the professional chef:
* Kitchen Porter: Kitchen Porter or KP, as he is widely known in the trade, provides the back breaking work as the backbone of the kitchen. Primarily he/she washes up, ensuring all chefs have the
tools of the trade at their station. S/he packs deliveries away accordingly, and generally cleans down the kitchen and mops the floor at the end of the night. * Commis Chef: Commis Chef is the entry level by which an apprentice chef enters the trade. Often the Commis Chef is studying food or catering at college whilst practising this role in a professional kitchen. The Commis Chef acts as an assistant to all food station's, usually supporting the Chef de Partie; and performing the more menial tasks of the kitchen such as peeling potatoes and chopping onions in large quantities. In some smaller kitchen's s/he will prepare salads, garnishes and other simple dishes. * Chef de Partie: Also known as Station Chef or Line Cook, the Chef de Partie is responsible for a certain section within the kitchen. In a busy kitchen s/he is assisted by one or more assistants, Demi Chef de Partie or Commis Chef's. Chef de Partie's are responsible for areas such as Saute, Roast, Grill, Fish, Larder, Fry, Vegetable's
A Roundsman Chef de Partie is so called as they rotate between all of the individual stations. sources produce and oversees all management aspects of the kitchen including budgeting. Once a chef has mastered all of the sections of the kitchen as a Chef de Partie s/he is trained and ready to essentially run the kitchen and supervise the rest of the kitchen team in the absence of the Head Chef. * Pastry Chef: Pastry Chef is a Chef de Partie who is responsible for the dessert and puddings section of the kitchen. payroll 5 .& Butchery. and will head a team of professionals in large kitchens including a baker. scheduling staff. Executive Chef. Sous Chef: The Sous Chef is second in command in the professional kitchen. to whom the Sous Chef is the direct assistant. Chef de Cuisine – The Head Chef devises the menu. S/he also ensures all pastries and breads are baked freshly. Head Chef. The Pastry Chef devises and delivers the dessert menu including all elements that appear on it such as cheese and wine choices.
Training for a fully qualified chef is usually four years as a Commis (1st year Commis. but their day to day work may involve very little hands-on cooking. providing that they meet the standard. The Head Chef has a plenty of scope for creativity within the role as menu creation and development is often their sole responsibility. they become a fully qualified kitchen professional. 2nd year Commis. and so on) after which. 6 . and the business side of the kitchen. An executive chef obviously is very experienced in cooking. creation of the menu. and top of the hierarchy. and begin their climb up the demanding kitchen career ladder. Executive Chef . through all of the levels to Head Chef.and recruitment.This is the manager of the kitchen responsible for supervision.
a sous chef may be in charge of the kitchen when the executive chef or chef de cuisine is absent.The sous chef is second in line in the kitchen. the sous chef may take over for any of the line cooks that may be missing. Also. Also. or related set. of restaurants.This is the individual who serves as liaison between the dining room and the kitchen. the titles executive chef and chef de cuisine may sometimes be used interchangeably. 7 . The expediter announces orders as well as checking dishes before they are taken into the dining room. Sometimes a chef de cuisine may be the individual in charge of one location of a chain. Chef de Cuisine . Expediter or Announcer .This is the hands-on individual in charge of everything going on in the kitchen. Gordon Ramsay frequently serves in this role on Hell's Kitchen. Sous Chef . Conversely.
The responsibility for all roasted and braised meats. this position is responsible for all fried items. and starches. o Grill Chef . o Fish Chef .This role may be combined with the roast chef and is responsible for all grilled foods.Responsible for all sauces and sauteed items.Each of these chefs or cooks are in charge of a particular portion of the kitchen's service.As the title implies.This chef is usually responsible for all the vegetables. o Roast Chef . o Vegetable Chef . pastas. Among the line cooks in the traditional French brigade system: o Saute Chef . o Fry Chef . Chef de Partie or Line Cook .All of the fish dishes and the butchering and fabrication of the fish as well. This is traditionally the top position among chefs de partie. soups. This is one of 8 .
This position is sometimes referred to as pantry chef and is in charge of cold salads. o Cold-Foods Chef . pastries. o Roundsman . etc. appetizers. o Pastry Chef .A chef who may work in any area and fill in wherever needed. o Butcher . and sweets.Holds the responsibility for baked goods. This is another position that may have several other cooks underneath the head chef. 9 .Responsible for butchering and fabricating meat and poultry. but often leaves fish to the fish chef.the roles most likely to have other cooks underneath the head chef. pates.
the director or head of a kitchen. Today it is sometimes erroneously (in the view of those in the profession) used to refer to any professional cook. the title "chef" in the culinary profession originated in the haute cuisine of the 19th century. (The French word comes from Latin caput and is cognate with English "chief".) In English. Although over time the term has come to describe any person who cooks for a living. Etymology The word "chef" is borrowed (and shortened) from the French term chef de cuisine.Chef A chef is a person who cooks professionally for other people. 10 . traditionally it refers to a highly skilled professional who is proficient in all aspects of food preparation. regardless of rank.
11 . Many of the titles are based on the brigade de cuisine (or brigade system) documented by Auguste Escoffier. while others have a more general meaning depending on the individual kitchen.Titles A chef working with a tandoor oven. a cylindrical clay oven used in cooking and baking Below are various titles given to those working in a professional kitchen and each can be considered a title for a type of chef.
This is often the case for chefs with several restaurants. management of kitchen staff. Sous-chef The Sous-Chef de Cuisine (under-chef of the kitchen) is the second in command and direct assistant of the Executive Chef.Chef de cuisine. executive chef and head chef This person is in charge of all things related to the kitchen which usually includes menu creation. but there is usually someone in charge of them. and plating design. ordering and purchasing of inventory. final authority in staff management decisions. Chef de cuisine is the traditional French term from which the English word chef is derived. possibly making the larger executive decisions such as direction of menu. Head chef is often used to designate someone with the same duties as an executive chef. etc. This person may be responsible for scheduling and substituting when the Executive Chef is off-duty and will also fill in for or assist the Chef 12 .
but larger operations may have several. Chef de partie A chef de partie. the station chef is the only worker in that department. each station chef might have several cooks and/or assistants. This person also often puts the finishing touches on the dish before it goes to the dining room. and relays them to the stations in the kitchen. Expediter The expediter (in French aboyeur) takes the orders from the dining room and brings them to the customer. In large kitchens. is in charge of a particular area of production. In some operations this task may be done by either the executive chef or the sous-chef. Line cooks are often divided into a hierarchy of their 13 . also known as a "station chef" or "line cook".de Partie (line cook) when needed. Smaller operations may not have a sous-chef. In most kitchens however.
own. Station-chef titles which are part of the brigade system include: English French IPA Description Responsible for all sautéed items and their sauce. This station may be combined with the saucier position. then "second cook". roast chef rôtisseur [ʁotisœʁ] Prepares roasted and braised 14 . and so on as needed. Prepares fish dishes and often does all fish butchering as well as fish chef poissonnier [pwasoɲe] appropriate sauces. starting with "first cook". This is usually the sauté chef saucier [sosje] highest stratified position of all the stations.
vegetables. this position may be combined with the rotisseur position. this grill chef grillardin [ɡʁijaʁdɛ] position may be combined with the rotisseur. Also referred to as a swing cook. In a full brigade system a potager would prepare soups and a legumier would prepare vegetables. vegetable entremetier [ɑtʁəmetje] chef pastas and starches. Prepares hot appetizers and often prepares the soups.meats and their appropriate sauce. Prepares all grilled foods. fills in as needed on stations in the 15 roundsman tournant [tuʁnɑ] . Prepares all fry chef friturier [fʁityʁje] fried items.
biscuits. including salads. cold charcuterie items. 16 .kitchen. breads and desserts. chocolates. pâtés and other [ɡaʁd foods. Pastry Chefs can specialize in cakes in patisseries or bakeries by making wedding. Butchers meats. Responsible for preparing cold garde pantry chef manger mɑʒe] appetizers. Is qualified in making baked goods such as pastries. cakes. pastry chef pâtissier [patisje] macarons. May also be butcher boucher [buʃe] responsible for breading meats and fish. poultry and sometimes fish.
Kitchen assistants Kitchen assistants are of two types. birthday and special occasion cakes. Kitchenhands assist with basic food preparation tasks under the chef's direction. Commis A commis is a basic chef in larger kitchens who works under a chef de partie to learn the station's responsibilities and operation. This may be a chef who has recently completed formal culinary training or is still undergoing training. kitchenhands and stewards. In larger establishments. They carry out relatively unskilled tasks such as 17 .cupcakes. the pastry chef often supervises a separate team in their own kitchen or separate shop.
or the more modern plonguer or dishwasher.peeling potatoes and washing salad. these duties may be incorporated. having charge of dishes and keeping the kitchen clean. A common humorous title for this role in some modern kitchens is "chef de plonge" or "head dishwasherCulinary education 18 . washing up and general cleaning duties. A communard is in charge of preparing the meal for the staff during a shift. This meal is often referred to as the staff or family meal. The escuelerie (from 15th century French and a cognate of the English "scullery"). is the keeper of dishes. In a smaller kitchen. Stewards are involved in the scullery.
directed by Executive Chef Henry Haller. Regardless of the education received. An internship is often part of the curriculum. most professional kitchens 19 . preparing a state dinner honoring Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser United States and Canadian training Culinary education is available from a wide number of institutions offering diploma. and bachelor degree programs in culinary arts.White House chefs in 1981. associate. this can take one to four years. Depending on the level of education.
They often spend the summer in work placements. are placed in sections of the kitchen (e. and so on.g. second-year commis. a commis will spend a certain period in each section of the kitchen to learn the basics. The rate of pay is usually in accordance with the training status.. In some cases this is modified to 'day-release' courses. a commis may work on the vegetable station of a kitchen. European training The training period for a chef is generally four years as an apprentice. and most new cooks will start at a lower-level chef de partie position and work their way up. over time. Ideally. like all other chefs except the executive-chef. the starter (appetizer) or entrée sections) under the guidance of a demi-chef de partie and are given relatively basic tasks. consisting of first-year commis. The usual formal training period for a chef is two years in catering college. Unaided. a chef will work full20 . Commis chefs. A newly qualified chef is a commis-chef.follow the apprenticeship system.
time in a kitchen as an apprentice and then would have allocated days off to attend catering college. or clogs. houndstooth (check) trousers (to disguise stains) and shoes with steel or plastic toe-caps. Uniform Chefs in Mexico wearing standard uniform. The standard uniform for a chef includes a hat. A chef's hat 21 . doublebreasted jacket. apron. These courses can last between one to three years. necktie.
The double breast also serves to conceal stains on the jacket as one side can be rebuttoned over the other. The hat helps to prevent sweat from dripping down the face. and is double-breasted to prevent serious injuries from burns and scalds.was originally designed as a tall rippled hat called a Dodin Bouffant. The jacket is usually white to show off the chef's cleanliness and repel heat. The modern chef's hat is tall to allow for the circulation of air above the head and also provides an outlet for heat. but as this is now against health regulations. 22 . The chef's neck tie was originally worn on the inside of the jacket to stop sweat running from face and neck down the body. Neckties were originally worn to allow for the mopping of sweat from the face. Skullcaps are an alternative hat worn by chefs. The Dodin Bouffant had 101 ripples that represent the 101 ways that the chef could prepare eggs. they are largely decorative.
According to some hygiene regulations. jewelry is not allowed apart from wedding bands and religious jewelry.An apron is worn to just below knee-length. Bandages on the hands are usually covered with rubber gloves. If hot liquid is spilled onto it. If wound dressings are required they should be blue—a colour not usual for foodstuffs—so that they are noticeable if they fall into food. 23 . also to assist in the prevention of burns because of spillage. the apron can be quickly removed to minimize burns and scalds. Shoes and clogs are hard-wearing and with a steel-top cap to prevent injury from falling objects or knives.
In most cases. In addition. Typically. catering 24 . Generally. managing employees. forecasting trends in the restaurant business. and choose the portion sizes and appearance of the meals. the staff of the kitchen report either directly to the head chef or to an assistant. Head chefs typically work in restuarants. catering companies. hotels. decide on the specials. she may be responsible for keeping the cost of the kitchen within a set budget. she will also decide what equipment is necessary and what ingredients need to be kept in stock. She may be responsible for finding and utilizing particular ingredients. one of the most enjoyable duties for a head chef is creating a menu. the head chef will create the menu. depending on the type of restaurant. retirement communities as well as other commercial dining establishments.HEAD CHEF A head chef oversees the way a kitchen operates. In some situations. and maintaining a safe kitchen according to health codes of the area.
depending on the overall style of the chef’s employer. she may need to find out if other competitive restaurants also offer a similar item. she may need to hire assistants to cover various aspects of the food preparation. In some cases. For example. In some cases. and whether it seems to sell well. she may be asked to set a price point for the items on a menu. In addition. how the competition prices that item. she may be asked to prepare a vegetarian menu or a menu using wild game as the meat selection. For example. For example. Cost may be a consideration for a head chef in some situations. spa. local. she may be given a weekly. Sometimes. she may need to do research in the field. private party. Sometimes a head chef needs a full kitchen staff to help the kitchen run smoothly. she may be asked to use only seasonal. or annual budget by her employer. one 25 . monthly. or organization where she is working. For example.company. resort. or organic ingredients. if she has decided that a new item should be added to the menu.
bruised. another for pastas. ensuring that all the ingredients for the items in the menu are available. and finding the best prices on those ingredients. The quality of the food is the ultimate responsibility of the chef. she may need to train her employees. and a third for side items. or low quality food items. Occasionally. as well. When people eat food prepared by another person. if an assistant is not performing adequately. so. she may need to decide what to do with spoiled. The head chef is typically 26 . Food must be used quickly to ensure it maintains a high quality and does not spoil. the head chef is responsible for monitoring the food. Sometimes. disciplinary measures may be taken by the chef.assistant may be needed for desserts. she may need to analyze whether she purchased too much or not enough of a specific ingredient. In many cases. In addition. laying out her goals and standards. they hope that the health codes will be followed.
runs the kitchen in a restaurant. country club. stand for extended periods of time. executive chef An executive chef. ordering supplies and planning meals. hotel or cruise ship. of course. cook. and. maintaining quality. Many years of kitchen experience may substitute for education for some employers. assigning tasks. also called the chef de cuisine or head cook. The duties of an executive chef include training staff. Most executive chefs manage a team of 10 or more kitchen workers. a few other skills that may be useful to her include the ability to do heavy lifting. 27 .responsible for maintaining a safe and clean working environment. communicate effectively. head chefs often have degrees or certificates from culinary schools. compute mathematical calculations. read. Though formal education isn't always a requirement. write. In addition.
an executive chef's day begins with menu planning.Typically. A customer's menu order is commonly called a ticket. Executive chefs oversee the kitchen staff's preparation of the tickets going out to customers to check that quality is maintained. A food preparation task may include cleaning and slicing poultry or washing and chopping vegetables. Executive chefs should make and keep good working relationships with vendors. Some food is prepared and stored ahead of time to use in preparing each day's menu orders. The executive or head chef is responsible for ordering any needed food and equipment for the kitchen. 28 . The menus must fit in with the budget allotted to the chef. the executive chef assigns tasks to his or her staff. A good head cook also keeps up with new trends in food as he or she must create new dishes and menus that are appealing to the clientele of the restaurant or other venue. Once the dishes and menu are decided upon and any necessary supplies and equipment are ordered.
school. but most also do at least some cooking. An executive chef must always be concerned with customer satisfaction. In smaller kitchens. If diners don't receive quality food and good service. Marketing duties may be the responsibility of some executive chefs. or cooking. while in larger kitchens he or she may just cook on special occasions. Some executive chefs may be involved in choosing or updating a restaurant's decor or theme. They not only oversee day-to-day kitchen operations and staff. Executive chefs are definitely the leaders in their kitchens and they must be able to motivate and manage the staff to work together as a team to complete meal services successfully.Training kitchen staff is the executive chef's responsibility. an executive chef may cook all the time. a 29 . The best executive chefs have a true passion for cooking. An executive chef's training varies and may include a certificate or diploma from a culinary. Executive chefs typically work 12 to 14 hour shifts.
Some people choose to undertake training at a culinary school. The duties of a sous chef vary widely. In order to become a sous chef. Some restaurants prefer sous chefs 30 .restaurant is unlikely to gain the good reputation that keeps it popular enough to stay in business. sous chef A sous chef is the second in command in a kitchen. In French. ensuring that everything runs smoothly whether or not the head chef is present. depending on the restaurant and its command structure. especially since it carries none of the glamor associated with being a head or executive chef.‖ Sous chefs are an important part of the restaurants they work in. This position in the culinary world can be extremely demanding. someone must undergo professional training. the term literally means ―under chef. while others prefer to learn on the ground by working their way up the restaurant food chain.
The sous chef is on the ground in the kitchen every day. these individuals may enjoy the social cachet of being a chef. Others view the position as the last step which needs to be taken before becoming an executive chef. For these individuals. the celebrity factor of becoming an executive chef is not of interest. being a sous chef is the pinnacle of employment. Sous chefs supervise food 31 . along with the ability to control their own menus and have ultimate authority over the kitchen. A sous chef certainly does some cooking. since they are sometimes more familiar with all of the tasks which need to be performed in a busy kitchen. but the job is about much more than just preparing food. For some people. but extremely rewarding when a kitchen runs smoothly and pleasantly.who have worked their way up in the ranks. The job is challenging. keeping track of a wide range of issues and working to ensure the the food in the restaurant is of the highest quality.
This position also might be termed a line cook 32 .preparation and safety all over the kitchen. payroll. Depending on the establishment. while in larger ones. he or she may work alone. In smaller kitchens. a chef de partie may supervise others working at the same station. chef de partie A chef de partie is a cook who is in charge of one area of a restaurant's kitchen. They may handle staff conflicts. These restaurant professionals also deal with the day to day issues in the restaurant. these assistant chefs are able to hire and fire staff and to undertake other autonomous decisions to keep the restaurant in good working order. keeping an eye on the staff and ensuring that the dishes stay true to the vision of the executive chef. proper storage of supplies. In some kitchens. the sous chef may be invited to submit recipes or dishes for consideration by the head chef. and other tasks as directed by the executive chef.
this cook needs to thrive in a high-pressure environment. The poissonier is in charge of preparing all fish. and finishing sauces. appetizers. and a hierarchy accompanies those who share this title. Some kitchens may label the second in command of the line cooks as a demi chef de partie. who focuses on cooking a certain type of food or preparing foods in a certain way. while others may assign hierarchy based on responsibility. with the saucier as the most senior position. while the rotisseur handles roasted meats and the friturier deep fries foods. Vegetables are prepared by the entremetier and the patissier 33 . This chef is typically in charge of all sautés. A large kitchen may have more than one chef de partie.or station chef. time management and organization are as vital as culinary skills to this position. and is responsible for preparing specific dishes. As with any position in a restaurant's kitchen. Types of Chefs de Partie Each station in a kitchen may have its own chef de partie.
a garnish station. swing cook.makes desserts and pastries. 34 . The chef de garde. a fry station. or pantry chef. In most professional kitchens. A line cook prepares a limited number of food items according to the orders of a supervising sous chef. A professional line cook should know how to work each station in the kitchen. there is a chain of command which goes from executive chef to head chef to sous chef and finally to a station cook or chef de partie. otherwise known as a line cook. a cold salad station or a number of other compartmentalized food prep areas. including salads and cold hors d'oeuvres. including prep work and coordination with other stations and the head chef. This may involve working at a meat station. or tournant. A chef de partie who fills in where needed is referred to as a roundsman. is responsible for all cold foods.
Each station has its own particular needs. If the master menu includes lobster tails. A good line cook should be able to work 35 . prepped and stored to handle any potential demand during service. the line cook or one of his or her employees will make sure enough tails are thawed. A line cook may have to work alone during food service.line cook A line cook is usually responsible for setting up his or her station in accordance with a master menu. Because communication is vital during food service. for example. or he or she may have a few employees to share the workload. a line cook must be able to work well with other line cooks while simultaneously preparing quality food and handling complaints from customers or wait staff. garnishes. and it is up to the line cook to make sure all of the sauces. and other complements have all been prepared and stored properly.
It is not unusual for an experienced line cook to remain in that same position for years. Because a busy professional kitchen can be a grueling physical and mental challenge. so a line cook should also strive to be a team player while preparing the same dishes in the same way for years. Many head chefs and sous chefs value consistency over creativity. but a promising kitchen staffer can also receive on-the-job training in order to master each station. The ability to coordinate several different orders at the same time is also a good skill for a line cook to possess. since promotions to sous chef or executive chef are often rare events and the average salary of an experienced line 36 . a line cook must also be able to keep his or her emotions in check while receiving criticism from a superior or correcting a food problem. Professional culinary training is highly recommended in order to become a line cook. since he or she is ultimately held responsible for the quality of the food leaving the station.consistently under extreme pressure.
pates and terrines) are prepared and other foods are stored under refrigeration. Larger hotels and restaurants may have garde manger staff perform additional duties. such as creating decorative elements of buffet presentation like ice carving and edible centerpieces made from materials such as cheese. Garde manger Garde manger meaning "keep to eat" refers to a cool. new cooking techniques or other executive-level projects.cook or station chef can be surprisingly competitive with other occupations. appetizers. The person in charge of this area is known as the chef garde manger. butter. A line cook in a large restaurant can hire his or her own staff to perform routine prep work. well-ventilated area where cold dishes (such as salads. 37 . canapes. salt dough or tallow. hors d'œuvres. allowing him or her the opportunity to work with superiors on new menu ideas.
Guilds would develop training programs for their members. "Charcuterie" was the name of a guild that 38 . maintaining a large supply of food and beverage was an outward symbol of power. thereby preserving their knowledge and skills. It is because of this duty of supervising the preserving of food and managing its utilization that many interpret the term "garde manger" . since the cool basement-like environment was ideal for storing food. At that time. These cold storage areas developed over time into the modern cold kitchen. Most merchants who worked outside noble manors at this time were associated with a guild. The food storage areas in these castles and manor houses were usually located in the lower levels.History The term "garde manger" originated in pre-Revolutionary France. wealth and status. an association of persons of the same trade formed for their mutual aid and protection.
etc. more space was required for the task of fabricating and portioning the raw proteins. garde mangers took on the responsibility for tasks that had formerly been performed by characutieres. but also to the need for separating raw proteins from processed foods to avoid cross-contamination and the resulting possibility of foodborne illness. Through this organization. sausages. 39 .prepared and sold cooked items made from pigs. This increased need for space was due not only to an upswing in the volume of protein sales.) increased. As both the cost of and demand for animal proteins (in the form of pork. When the guild system was abolished early in the French Revolution in 1791. The position of "butcher" first developed as a specialty within the garde manger kitchen. beef. pates and terrines were preserved. who had difficulty competing with the versatile garde mangers due to the limited range of skills involved. bacon. the preparation of hams.
40 . In other high-profile classically influenced restaurants and hotels. In many restaurants it is a station which is generally an entry level cooking position within a restaurant. Commis A commis is a basic chef in larger kitchens who works under a chef de partie to learn the station's responsibilities and operation. as it often involves preparing salads or other smaller plates which can be heated and quickly plated without significant experience.Modern garde manger Modern garde manger can refer to different things in the professional kitchen. This may be a chef who has recently completed formal culinary training or is still undergoing training. the position pertains to the classical preparations.