But of course, if you love baking, being creative, making desserts that look and taste fantastic, then this will be the job for you – doing what you love to do. And you’ll have a wide range of work environments to choose from. As a pastry chef you might find yourself working in the local town bakery, a coffee shop in a tropical resort, the kitchen of a 5-star hotel, or a busy downtown lunch café.
So, to become a great pastry chef you really have to be passionate about creating beautiful cakes, pastries, breads or desserts. Being creative is an essential part of a pastry chef. Creating desserts and baking is not just a production job – it’s an art; one of the ‘culinary arts’, in fact. To be a successful pastry chef you need to have plenty of imagination and resourcefulness and, of course, know your customers and their tastes. For that, you need to keep up with the latest trends of your clientele and be able to gauge their reactions to your culinary creations.get redirected here
Apart from passion for the job, you really need to be physically fit. You definitely have to be a ‘morning person’; most pastry chefs have to rise early, a start time of 3 or 4 in the morning is quite normal. You will spend most of your working day on your feet, so you will need to be physically fit and have stamina – pastry chefs are sometimes required to work long hours.
Working in a bakery or commercial kitchen requires team work. Chefs rarely work alone. So ask yourself how well you can fit in as a team member. And a team that sometimes has to work in stressful conditions too. You will have to get along with everyone – your boss and the service staff included – so if you’re a good ‘people person’ with a good sense of humor, you’ll find it a lot easier on the job.
To be a good pastry chef you will need good organizational skills and, depending on the level of the job, administration and management skills. Your job descriptions chef might involve planning the menus and ordering your ingredients, maybe even stocktaking and budgeting. As you advance in your career, you will find a growing number of skills and qualification that you will need to acquire in order to fulfill the job requirements.
So – what is the best way to start?
Training: You might be lucky and be able to start as an apprentice pastry chef in a local bakery or restaurant. You will be able to work and learn at the same time. But be prepared to work hard, long hours and do a lot of the less glamorous jobs in the kitchen – that’s the price you pay for the free tuition. Take advantage of every opportunity to learn everything you can about the trade, including all the tricks the experts use, and get as much practical experience as you can.
Being an apprentice will give you a chance to find out if being a pastry chef is really for you, without making the commitment of enrolling in a culinary course. On the other hand, if you for sure that this is your career, you might as well get straight into a good training course. Do some research and find the right culinary school. One with a good reputation, good connections to the hospitality industry, which offers expert hands-on training and on-the-job experience. You choice will depend on location, budget and time frame, but it will be a big investment of your time, money and effort, so make sure you make the right choice – it might mean the difference between your success and failure as a pastry chef.
And remember to always look out for those expert chefs who you can learn from; watch them carefully and find every opportunity to practise what you have learned.
It’s the combination of knowledge and practise that makes a great pastry chef. With hard work, patience and perseverance, you too can have a great career doing what you love to do.