People generally think that culinary school is a place that transforms passionate home cooks into world-class chefs. Important to note, a culinary school is not only about julienned vegetables and de-boning chicken but is also a fun and rewarding place, if you have the passion for it. Having said that, it is also important to mention that training in the kitchen could also drain you down physically and sometimes emotionally too. So, it is important to know what you are getting into before going down that road to professional chefdom.
A professional kitchen is entirely different from our comforting home kitchen. It is a lot more intense than you may think; the knives are sharper, burners are hotter, and there are so many new and advanced equipment & tools to deal with. Also, in a professional kitchen you are required to work at a pace which you might find difficult to catch up with initially.
For beginners, cuts and burns are almost inevitable in the kitchen especially when you work at a pace like that. Everything in the kitchen is sharp and hot, and it’s just a matter of time to get a hold on to it without hurting yourself physically. It is expected to happen, and you will learn to deal with it in time.
Coming to the emotional exhaustion of being in a kitchen, there is no doubt that you will face some trials in there as well. Amidst the cuts, burns and sweat that you go through in the kitchen, sometimes you will also get yelled at, for not doing a very good job at cooking which you always thought you are best at. It is better if you have a good support system to help you keep motivated through this period. But again, this how it is, everyone feels this way and you will definitely get past this.
None of this would be that big a problem once you are mentally prepared for it before joining the kitchen, and eventually all of this will just feel normal to you.
You might be thinking you are already doing a lot in the school and that would be it. The fact is, cooking will take over your life and everything you do on a daily basis will start reflecting more of your kitchen behavior.
The last and the most important thing is regardless of how much you slog in the culinary school that alone will never get you the ticket to becoming an exceptional chef. Culinary school is all about learning the basics, and what you build for your future out of it, totally depends on how well you continue to put your skills to work, to learn more and achieve great heights.
All great chefs began the same way. All you need is the passion and perseverance to prove that you are made for the kitchen and it rewards you back in more ways than one.