In general, chefs instruct and oversee a kitchen staff in food preparation and production for a restaurant, cafeteria, or other food service facility. They might determine a restaurant's menu, adjust item pricing, develop new recipes, purchase culinary supplies, cook, and/or manage the restaurant.
Chefs and other workers involved in food handling must observe safety and sanitation procedures. They also might help reinforce federal and state mandates regarding health codes. Chefs implement guidelines in keeping utensils, food equipment, storage chambers, and cooking areas clean. They also check the freshness and quality of ingredients to prevent contamination and food-related illness.
Chefs might talk with customers to gauge their level of satisfaction and evaluate the quality of service that the establishment provides. They might deal directly with businesses or individual clients who want to organize catering and banquet activities for corporate events, birthday parties, weddings, or other celebrations. Additionally, chefs coordinate with the kitchen staff to create new dishes. They also might train kitchen personnel in cooking techniques, food garnishing, and presentation.
Work conditions for chefs include potential dangers, such as hot ovens and stovetop pans, slippery floors, and sharp knives. Chefs might work long hours, including weekends and evenings, because of morning food deliveries and the planning and preparation of meals during the day.
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