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Old 09-12-2007, 11:39 AM   #1
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Question for the Chefs Out There

Wondered what the pros (chefs) here have for dinner. Do you prepare your own dinner at home, or eat at the restaurant? Are the meals/food free? Enquiring minds want to know. Also, after cooking all day in a restaurant etc., do you have any passion/energy left to cook at home - or is it Mickie D's? Would like to see input from the chefs here re what are YOU having for dinner.

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Old 09-12-2007, 11:56 AM   #2
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Wondered what the pros (chefs) here have for dinner. Do you prepare your own dinner at home, or eat at the restaurant? Are the meals/food free? Enquiring minds want to know. Also, after cooking all day in a restaurant etc., do you have any passion/energy left to cook at home - or is it Mickie D's? Would like to see input from the chefs here re what are YOU having for dinner.
In the hotels that I've worked in, we had an employee cafeteria which fed the entire hotel. In free-standing restaurants, the kitchen usually puts out a "crew meal" for the staff. Depending on the crew meal or if I have time, I'll usually eat that. Mostly I'll skip the crew meal because it's too early for me to eat dinner (it's usually put out at 4-4:30pm) and grab something from Mickey D's or Jack-in-the-Box on my way home.
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Old 09-12-2007, 11:56 AM   #3
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Most restaurant chefs are in their kitchens at dinnertime, so it's "the restaurant or nothing" until service is over. Some chefs sometimes eat the family meal that is served in the afternoon between lunch and dinner..

I can't speak for anyone but myself on the other, but I'd rather not eat anything than eat at MickeyD's. That stuff is NASTY!
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Old 09-12-2007, 12:04 PM   #4
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I forgot to add that I cook at home on my days off. Not that I really want to, but I'd rather not eat fast food 7 days a week.

Awww, ChefJune, nothing wrong with a little Mickey D's after 4 hours of getting slammed on the line. A #1 Supersized with two hot apple pies really hits the spot at 11:30pm.
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Old 09-12-2007, 12:17 PM   #5
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Most restaurant chefs are in their kitchens at dinnertime, so it's "the restaurant or nothing" until service is over. Some chefs sometimes eat the family meal that is served in the afternoon between lunch and dinner..

I can't speak for anyone but myself on the other, but I'd rather not eat anything than eat at MickeyD's. That stuff is NASTY!
My question was for chefs here at DC that cook professionally - not 'most chefs'. I don't think that ALL chefs are working at Dinner time. I used Mickie D's as an example, as IC has shared his photos (very nice one, I may add & he shared his recipe - thanks, IC), cooking at home with his little one & mentioned he stops for a quickie/fast food. As far as fast food - ain't nothing wrong with it!

Some chefs on this site, are starting out, and wonder if the salary includes free meals. Allen, as I recall works at a country club- wondered do you & IC get to eat your creations?

ETA: After cooking all day professionally, are you turned off to cooking and food when you get home?
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Old 09-12-2007, 12:25 PM   #6
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I either eat at the shop, or grab a bite on the way home. late night take out is another option, but can get pricey everyday.

I too cook 1 day a week. Normally go shopping, get home, prep/fabricate all of it, portion it in to easy to reheat meals, and then I am good to go for 5 days.

After a 16 hour day in the kitchen, normally the LAST thing one wants to do is go home, and cook dinner. At least me.

And most Chefs, unless it is an AM shift, are in the kitchen during dinner hours, that is the nature of the bizz. Chefs are required to be there during hours of service, breakfast, lunch, or dinner, the little spaces in between are for prepping for the next shift/service.
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Old 09-12-2007, 12:49 PM   #7
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My SO is a Chef. He's in the kitchen for every breakfast, lunch and supper. He'll try to grab a bite between lunch and supper, but depending on the prep needed, it's not always possible. When he gets home, if he's not too tired, it's usually a sandwhich, or cereal. (Unless I'm visiting, in which case I do the cooking. ). On his day off (when he gets one), it's usually something quick and easy, eggs, burger, sandwhich, cereal. If he has running around to do on his day off, it's usually a meal at IHOP or a Mexican restauant Staff get meals at a discount.

I forgot to mention the pizza joint that's on his way home. He visits them often.
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Old 09-12-2007, 01:08 PM   #8
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I spend all weekend cooking at home. I make a special dinner, like something you'd order for a holiday meal, on Saturday evenings. On Sunday, I make three dinners, and enjoy them all week long. Friday.....that's usually light tapas style dishes and booze.

I love to dine out...and don't often care about the price as long as the service is great and the food is wonderful.
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Old 09-12-2007, 01:17 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by *amy* View Post
My question was for chefs here at DC that cook professionally - not 'most chefs'. I don't think that ALL chefs are working at Dinner time. I used Mickie D's as an example, as IC has shared his photos (very nice one, I may add & he shared his recipe - thanks, IC), cooking at home with his little one & mentioned he stops for a quickie/fast food. As far as fast food - ain't nothing wrong with it!

Some chefs on this site, are starting out, and wonder if the salary includes free meals. Allen, as I recall works at a country club- wondered do you & IC get to eat your creations?

ETA: After cooking all day professionally, are you turned off to cooking and food when you get home?
Wow, bite her head off, why dont you? I don't know that answering for what most chefs do is such an inappropriate answer to this thread. Throw a query out there, I believe all answers are valid. The majority of restaurants are open for dinner. Sure, some are open for breakfast and lunch, but dinner is the meal that most chefs work at. Soux chefs handle the lighter meals.
I'm with June...I'd rather eat woolen socks than eat fast food.

Many chefs don't have to cook at home. Most eat at work, or go to after hours places that cater to people in the industry.
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Old 09-12-2007, 01:18 PM   #10
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I forgot to add that I cook at home on my days off. Not that I really want to, but I'd rather not eat fast food 7 days a week.

Awww, ChefJune, nothing wrong with a little Mickey D's after 4 hours of getting slammed on the line. A #1 Supersized with two hot apple pies really hits the spot at 11:30pm.
I haven't done this in years.........but there was a time when it was white castle at 2 in the morning...and it was magnificent!
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Old 09-12-2007, 02:07 PM   #11
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I have worked in a variaty of places andmost of them give the Chef his meal if he has time. Most fast food joints charge half price for meals,, I am retired now but when I was working I cooked on my day s off, something special for my dw and me now I just cook for me, and some times my neighbor.
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Old 09-13-2007, 10:08 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by *amy* View Post
My question was for chefs here at DC that cook professionally - not 'most chefs'. I don't think that ALL chefs are working at Dinner time. I used Mickie D's as an example, as IC has shared his photos (very nice one, I may add & he shared his recipe - thanks, IC), cooking at home with his little one & mentioned he stops for a quickie/fast food. As far as fast food - ain't nothing wrong with it!

Some chefs on this site, are starting out, and wonder if the salary includes free meals. Allen, as I recall works at a country club- wondered do you & IC get to eat your creations?

ETA: After cooking all day professionally, are you turned off to cooking and food when you get home?
Pardon me, *amy,* if you already know the answer to your question, why did you ask? Are you a chef? I am. You're not going to get very far being rude.

Working chefs eat on the fly. They're busy cooking for others. Most of the male chefs I know love to cook for their families when they have time. OTOH, most of them don't even get to see their kids except on weekends.

There is nothing glamorous about our career. The hours are long, the kitchen is hot, the customers are demanding, we are always on our feet, we have to work Saturday nights and holidays, and some of us on Sundays, too.

Television has glamorized the culinary profession unduly. Chefs deserve all the recognition they are getting because they work HARD. This is not, however a field one should enter hoping for their own tv show, because that is NOT gonna happen.

Sorry, poster friends. I don't take well to being skewered for nothing!
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Old 09-13-2007, 11:20 AM   #13
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Television has glamorized the culinary profession unduly.
Well, not really. Most TV shows glamorize the cooking (or the star of the show) and not the job of being a Chef. Those are two different things. There are a few shows like H3ll’s Kitchen and Top Chef that hint at what it might be like to actually work professionally in a kitchen, but even those aren’t centered on the actual profession of a Chef and instead focus more on the dynamics between the contestants. Maybe if Mike Rowe did a spot on Dirty Jobs and worked as a Chef it would be a better picture of the profession.

And as for working late hours into the night, working Saturdays and Holidays, etc, that is to be expected from any job that caters to the public: Wal-Mart clerks, Movie Gallery employees, car salesmen, etc. That is the nature of a job that serves the public. I’ve been a clerk, a prep cook, an auditor, and even a DJ, and all of those jobs catered to and dealt directly with the public, and I’ve worked late into the night and many a Holiday. When you’re in that line of work, getting a Holiday off is a rare treat!

DW recently got maniacally bored with being a stay at home “Domestic Engineer” and picked up a part time job as prep help in a local Mom and Pop diner down the street. She works days through the week (and the occasional night), and nights on weekends (but they’re closed on Sunday). When she comes home, I have dinner or a glass of wine waiting for her. Usually she doesn’t want to eat when she gets home, so I eat early and then we snack if we get hungry later.

At her work, she gets to eat free and gets all the free drinks (coke, tea, etc) that she wants. If she’s hungry, she (and any other employee there) can have nearly anything on the menu (although steaks are reserved for only once a week, if that). She also brings home lots of leftovers like extra baked potatoes that didn’t sell, breads, pestos, veggies, the last bits of a large roast, etc. It’s always interesting to see what she might bring home each night; plus she is much happier now that she has something to occupy some of her time.

And as for nothing in the Chef business being glamorous......I don’t know about that. Have you seen some of the knives that Iron Chef uses. Wow!
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Old 09-13-2007, 11:43 AM   #14
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Where I worked they offered no shift meals. I was happy if, over the course of 17 hours, I had eaten a slice of Swiss rolled around a piece of corned beef and don't even think I forgot the thousand island and a bit of sauerkraut in there In between the lunch and dinner shift the other cook and myself would sometimes sleep on the dining room floor because we were too tired to go home We never made any type of meal to eat but whatever we did eat we did not have to pay for. Their two biggest expenses for the two of us that cooked were coffee in the morning and lemonade throughout the day - it's the only thing that we craved. I guess with all that sweating we just wanted some potassium back in us

I was definitely too tired to cook when I got home but I could throw together some pre-made spaghetti sauce and pasta or a bagel with lettuce, tomato, and mustard. It usually took a good 3 hours to totally unwind and fall asleep.

Oh, I forgot, sometimes we would make a little "snack" to have after we cleaned and finally closed down. We could say we had our fruits and vegetables even though it was really a raspberry beer and onion rings

On my days off I LOVED to cook.

There was certainly nothing glamorous about working in a hot kitchen. Rewarding most definitely.
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Old 09-13-2007, 02:21 PM   #15
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As I am a chef for hire, I don't get meals unless I contract it in, which I do for some of my clients because they want it that way--and instructional meal.

I cook at home. Chefs I know come in all types 1) I cook for a living not at home. 2) I am passionate about food and cooking and cook anywhere anytime for anybody, but not for myself. 3) I love to cook and love to eat. But most of those I know are nibblers, trying this and that and always interested, but rarely have a big meal.

I'm a number 3 and have to spend the non working time in the gym.
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Old 09-14-2007, 12:13 PM   #16
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Wow, bite her head off, why dont you? I don't know that answering for what most chefs do is such an inappropriate answer to this thread. Throw a query out there, I believe all answers are valid. The majority of restaurants are open for dinner. Sure, some are open for breakfast and lunch, but dinner is the meal that most chefs work at. Soux chefs handle the lighter meals.
I'm with June...I'd rather eat woolen socks than eat fast food.

Many chefs don't have to cook at home. Most eat at work, or go to after hours places that cater to people in the industry.
The intent/purpose of my question was to ask about personal experience from DC members that cook professionally - not to bite someone's head off.

Chef June, in no way was my intent/reply meant to be rude. Some of the replies seemed to be an overall blanket statement for what all chefs do or do not do - or choose to eat.

Chef June, I feel it more appropriate to address another member in a pm rather than post on the board re rudeness. We do not all know each other re who cooks professionally, & who does not. CJ, I do appreciate all members' input, however I was not aware that you cook(ed) professionally. I have read your posts re recipes w interest, but being honest here - thought you were plugging your book and website? So, perhaps give folks here a chance to get to know you.

ETA: The question was not about who likes macdonald's. On a personal note, professionally I worked some long hours, had access to the best restaurants & could have written 'em off, if I chose to. I understand long hours & hard work - on many occasions gasp I ran home and ate a TV dinner, because I didn''t have the time & strength to cook & had to go back to work. Hazzards of my occupation.
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Old 09-14-2007, 12:31 PM   #17
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Old 09-14-2007, 12:47 PM   #18
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The intent/purpose of my question was to ask about personal experience from DC members that cook professionally - not to bite someone's head off.

Chef June, in no way was my intent/reply meant to be rude. Some of the replies seemed to be an overall blanket statement for what all chefs do or do not do - or choose to eat.

Chef June, I feel it more appropriate to address another member in a pm rather than post on the board re rudeness. We do not all know each other re who cooks professionally, & who does not. CJ, I do appreciate all members' input, however I was not aware that you cook(ed) professionally. I have read your posts re recipes w interest, but being honest here - thought you were plugging your book and website? So, perhaps give folks here a chance to get to know you.
Amy, I don't know any of you personally and in general, I would agree with your remarks about sending PMs about delicate issues. I can't speak for anyone else but I have noticed that you appear to take offense easily and have posted some rather prickly responses publicly rather than via PM's. Perhaps others take that as your indication you prefer to handle things via the forums. Just my observations.
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Old 09-14-2007, 12:49 PM   #19
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