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Cuts, Burns, and the First 3 Days…

Any chef will tell you that getting cuts and burns is just part of the job. As you get better and more experienced this tends to happen less and less, but it is still part of the job and we learn to roll with it. As this post would make one guess, yes, I cut myself today. As far as cuts go it was a “good” one, if any cut or burn can really be considered good. Thankfully, however, my knife was very sharp so it didn’t hurt as much as it could have. It bled a bit, but that is the worst of it. The part that is hard about cuts and burns on the hands is that for a chef they are part of our tools as well. It’s hard to work sometimes with a bandaged finger and it also takes away time from the project we are working on. Sometimes, like today, we have to stop and clean everything as well as get rid of the product we are working on.

For everyone who might worry- I’M FINE. It happens and I’ll heal. The part that surprised me a little bit was how everyone seemed to be concerned or cared about what had happened. I have only been in the kitchens for 3 days so far and it was surprising, like I said, to feel that comradeship and care after such a short amount of time.

As for what I have done so far and how things are going, well it’s been 3 days. However in those 3 days I have done a few different things. Day one was cooking theory all jammed in to 8 hours. They had us show our knife skills by cutting all the veg for the prep work. Then we moved on to stock and soup making, we used our prep work for this. After this we moved on to cooking proteins and making sauces for said protein. We even made starches and veg to go with the two different meals we made. When this was all said and done we went on to storing the meals for later and sanitation. All in all I thought it was a great first day, and I learned some tricks on the basics of what NECI taught me. To top it all off I got to try fresh finished that day foie gras!

Day two I spent in the Garde-Manger room working on different cold salads and prep for the events going on next week. All your fairly standard stuff with nothing too exciting. They did tell me to make any type of pasta salad I wanted to, it just had to taste good. The chef liked it and didn’t make any recommendations on changes so for me that is a win!

Today, besides cutting myself, I worked in the staff kitchen making lunch and dinner prep for the staff today. It was a lot like working in the caf back up at NECI. Utilization of leftovers and turning them in to “new” items for everyone who was working today to eat.

Time gets crazy starting next week and doesn’t slow down until about Jan. 7th so fun and fast times are on the way. Stay tuned Chef fans; the train hasn’t even left the yard yet.

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