Archive | December, 2010

Life in a Fine Dining Restaurant

20 Dec

One of my life long dreams have come true. I am getting to work in a professional kitchen in a fine dining restaurant that uses the freshest possible ingredients. Even writing this I cannot believe that this has happened to me. I have not gone to cooking school or really had any background in this at all. I am truly thankful that God has given me with this opportunity. It has been a totally different experience for me that i never thought I would get to do. The first two days were totally crazy.They were some of  the busiest days we’ve had since I have been there. Let’s just say I got quickly acquainted with the cooking world.

On day two Chef sent me to her office so she could “talk” to her cooks. I must have stood there open-mouthed like I have never heard that strange language.  She ended up firing the woman I was working under because she never had her station set up properly and was taking major short cuts. So day two I was working the salad and dessert station with Felicia coming over and showing me how to do things properly. It was a crazy night. I felt like I was thrown in a completely dark room and told to organize everything.  I should have had a note-book so when she told me to pick up a duck salad I could write exactly what was in it. Unfortunately I wasn’t that brilliant. I just had to try my hardest to remember them and not get them mixed up. By the end of the night which wasn’t untill 12:30 I was thoroughly done. For one I normally don’t stay up that late even doing nothing but being on the cement for 9 1/2 hours working was exhausting. Felicia looked at me at the end of the night and told me to go home and get some sleep. You must have been able to see how tired I was because all the staff kept asking if I was tired. They said I got thrown in the heat of it. I was glad that they were saying this instead of  “Oh this is just a normal night, you should be here when we are busy.”

That was 4 months ago. I am now much more accustomed to craziness of the kitchen, the late nights, the tasting of bizarre foods at bizarre times, doing one mundane task for hours on end, and taking the blame for something I didn’t do, or did do.  Guess what? I like it all. I feel like I am learning a lot from working there. One thing that is hard for me is being fast and still making it look good. I know I have gotten faster but not as fast as I or chef would like.

Last weekend we catered a holiday party for an airline company for 1,000 people. We made a ton of food. We came back with a lot of food because a plane with 200 people didn’t come due to being stuck in Indianapolis because of snow. I told  chef about our church feeding the homeless the next day and asked if our church could have some of the food. Looking very relieved she told me to take it all. It was awesome because the Memphis gatehouse had been planning on feeding the homeless that day and it seemed like God did that for us. Starting with so much snow that people couldn’t make it to the party….. us having a lot of extra food….. sending a lot of people who needed food….. the ladies not having to make spaghetti…..hence it being shrimp! Isn’t our God amazing!

For the most part the staff is pretty nice. One guy asked me if I was a Mormon. I thought that was funny. I told him no just a devoted a Christian. I tried explaining about our life but nobody can even comprehend it and it doesn’t fit in one of their religious compartments. So I guess a Mormon was the closest possible thing they could come up with. I do wear black pants and lite weight white shirt so that must have added to their conclusions.

I do not know how long I will be working there. I do know I want to learn everything I can while I am there.  It definitely has been an adventure though. I am glad I get this opportunity. I would never have thought that this dream would actually come true. I don’t know if I will ever own a restaurant but I know I love to make creations with food, I love to feed people, I love to watch them eat, I love to hear my nephews talk about how good Auntie Laina’s food is. I love taking care of people through food. Eating is a universal task that everyone must do and I love to make each meal an experience for them. I am really fine with not opening up a restaurant. I know for the rest of my life I will be taking care of people and feeding people is one of my ways of showing my love. I do know I want whatever kitchen I have to always open for hungry people.

I know that this is a long post and I don’t normally write long posts because I don’t normally like reading long posts. Esp. if there are no pictures. 🙂 So I apologize if I completely bored any of you. Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year!!!