Tip/guidance to the young chef : relationship between head chef and pastry chef 

The way we manage and run a Relationship can define and affect the results and outcomes in many of of our our life circles, if it’s our home, work , and friendships.

In the following article I will try to provide some tools to improve the relationship between the two types of chef which I found in many circumstances tensed for the wrong reasons.


Few facts / point of views about desserts in restaurants

Now days People enjoy good dessert and many time plan there main course according to the choices and variety of dessert .

Many restaurants function with small kitchens relative to the size of the restaurant, and don’t allow for good technical work on the part of the pastry chef so either they out source dessert or have limited choice / quality product.

Profit from desserts ranges from 18-20%

As someone who worked in different places around the globe and this is said only from my personal experience), I can say that none of the restaurants that I worked in had a declared pastry chef; there was a unit which dealt with desserts in concert with the head chef—even in the Michelin starred restaurants I spent time in. But these era is changing especially in specific level of restaurants .

Still, in most cases the thought process is clearly economic either to make simple deserts that can be made with the tools the restaurant has, or out source .

There is a clear trend of improvement and change of attitude restaurant group’s owners / managers have a great awareness of the subject of desserts.

There is greater awareness today that a good dessert will be sold and that the right dessert (!!!) can multiply sales by 6-7 times and can balance out food cost (the right dessert = everyone should decide for him/herself what is ‘right’) the right dessert for me is the one every ones love , easy to make and has good margins.

Desserts are often used as a smokescreen to fill in holes—that is, to placate an unhappy customer. It leaves a sweet taste, and can be easily and quickly taken out.
Relationship between the head chef and pastry chef 

The pastry chef and restaurant chef are two completely different disciplines, and generally, according to the classical hierarchy in the kitchen, the pastry chef is supposed to be at the level of an operational chef—a chef who runs a unit and above whom is the restaurant chef who lends a guiding hand together with the pastry chef.

Proper work between the two shouldn’t cause any sort of tension. The problem starts when one side invades an area where he shouldn’t be—for example, a pastry chef who doesn’t understand the restaurant’s needs and exceeds requests and the line laid out for him, or a head chef who gets involved in technical matters that he doesn’t understand—basically, ego, and needless, stupid power struggles.

A good pastry unit can only be an asset to a restaurant, and as I wrote previously, a smart chef understands that a good pastry unit fills in many important gaps. I return again to the idea of the “smokescreen,” and that’s because a pastry unit produces under quieter conditions and the dessert is ready well in advance, whereas a kitchen produces under pressure and so it is likely that a good dessert unit has, as part of its arsenal, a good product that will complete the meal properly and with a smile.

In the nature of this type of work is pressure between the two units—the kitchen staff generally sees itself as the fighting unit that is under the continued pressure of “deadlines,” whereas the pastry unit has its own pace, generally starts and finishes early, and generally doesn’t deal with service. So that naturally, unnecessary tension exists. But it is forbidden that each unit, instead of dealing with the issues each faces in its own area, gets involved in and tries to fix mistakes made by the other side—that also leads to improper tension.

In summary, a head chef performing properly should lead to flourishing results for the confectionary unit, without either side feeling any sort of threat, but rather complimentary activity. Not every restaurant needs a confectionary unit; it’s a subject that requires localized considerations. A pastry chef in a restaurant is generally an operational chef, and he/she needs to internalize that in order to carry out his/her work properly and preserve shalom bayit (peace in the house).

Here are few photos from my personal environment

Thank you for reading



About michaelkatz1

שמי מיכאל כץ טבח במקצועי מאז 1991-לא מעט תפקידים עברתי בחיי בינהם מורה בבית הספר ״ קורדון בלו ״ באנגליה שם גיליתי כמה אני אוהב ללמד ולכוון את הדור הצעיר.
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