A Career in Catering – Private Chefs

How private chefs have transformed a mundane career into a lucrative sought after one.
When you first think of the job of a chef you imagine long hours and split shifts, where after lunch the chef has a small break for 15-30 minutes before getting back to evening service, dreading the thought of a gruelling evening of sweat and intense pressure, shouting and big egos in the kitchen, low wages, struggling to eat as they are sickened by the sight of food. The end of service leaving them feeling deflated, exhausted and smelling of foisty foods in desperate need of a few hours sleep before the 6am start doing it all over again the next day.

Taking their career into the private sector is something most chefs don’t think to do – nor do all want to, some enjoy that bustle and busyness and get a thrill out of it. To those who do choose to and get lucky enough to get into the private sector, they find that a lot of the aspects they disliked about their roles in a busy kitchen diminish and they can concentrate on what they really like about their job and the reason they got into it in the first place – their love and passion of cooking and pleasing people with good food, making people happy, bringing people together for fun and enjoyment.
When cooking within a family environment you get feedback
You can work hard to master the tastes of the principles and get it right every time. It means you can enjoy hearing compliments on your hard work and feel very appreciated. Major bonuses with this work are that you work with only the best suppliers and have no budget on produce. Cooking with ingredients like this is every chefs dream.
You also get to eat food you cook for the family. You cook what you like in your own time with no one breathing over your shoulder – much less stress than restaurants when cooking for 70-100 people at a very high level.
Hours can still be long with breakfast, lunch and dinner but in your own time, the way you want and breaks can be taken – all for a hearty pay packet too considerably more than a restaurant chef.
Feeling part of the family
Dean went from restaurant work to the private sector and says…..
“I would never look back, I don’t miss the stress of the kitchen at all. I lost weight, got bad skin and felt over worked.
In my current role I feel part of the family, my food is appreciated and I feel more job satisfaction for this. I strive harder to push myself as not to cook repetitive dishes, I gain lots of inspiration from dining out, being sure to experience lots of different cuisines to reproduce dishes for the family. I’m lucky, my boss has allowed me to ask some top chefs to come to the house for 4 days each tuition, so I’m learning all the time, different cuisines from traditional cooks. Italian, Japanese, pastry work and I’m excited to do Spanish next. I feel you can never learn enough and I get a lot out of working with these chefs. I feel my cooking has improved so much since working alone for the family.”