You know what question drives a chef insane? What really grinds his gears? Oh you’re a chef? So what’s your specialty? Or what’s your favorite thing to cook? How am I supposed to answer that question? I suppose if I was a sushi chef, I would say raw fish. But I’m not. I’ve cooked a little bit of everything in my culinary career. Southern, Italian, Asian, etc. You name it, I’ve probably attempted to cook it, either in culinary school or professionally. I’m good at cooking food, as simple as that. My specialty? Umm, making good food? And my favorite thing to cook? How about when someone else does the cooking. Don’t get me wrong, I do enjoy cooking on my little time away from the kitchen, especially during the holidays. I don’t know how many Christmas Eve’s I have missed, which makes being off this year even more special. But part of the fun of being a chef is actually being able to enjoy and experience how other restaurants do things. Anytime there is a new restaurant opening in the area that is doing something cool or different, I’m the first one there. I’m going to New Orleans in a few weeks, so you have no idea how much I am looking forward to being a glutton for a few days. I think my Instagram, as well as my waistband, might explode. What I like to eat is probably an easier question for me to answer. Pretty much everything. The moral of the story? Next time you meet a chef, don’t ask him what his or her specialty is. And please don’t say you’re a foodie. Still don’t know who came up with that word. Instead, maybe just have a beer and talk about food, as simple as that.
One thing I am jealous of is the concept of sick days. In my entire culinary career, I think I have missed maybe 2 days; and I wasn’t even sick. I had a scratch on my cornea, so I couldn’t really see. And I might have left early once or twice, but in 8 plus years, I would say that I am pretty much a given to show up to work even when I feel like shit. I say that as I have been battling a fever the last few days, luckily I have been off. It really sucks when you are sick and feel like crap. But imagine having to be in a kitchen all day when it’s hot and incredibly busy. Doesn’t sound like much fun does it? Most normal jobs you are able to stay at home and get better. Weird concept huh? It’s especially hard in small kitchens because there is usually no one else who can come into work. You’re lucky if you can switch schedules to fill in the gaps. My mom was like what don’t you just call out? People in kitchens don’t know what it means to call out. You show up to work when you’re sick, unless your arm falls off or you cut your thumb off. But you better be here all the earlier tomorrow. I sound like Ebenezer Scrooge. Bah humbug. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year’s! And thanks for following the blog; all the feedback has been great and unexpected. I didn’t think when I started this endeavor that people would actually come back to read more.