The restaurant and catering industries have undergone explosive growth in the last two years. Reality TV shows focusing on the restaurant business and cooking shows have become very popular have fueled this trend, as has a growing health consciousness among the public. Catering alone is a $6 billion a year sector of the economy and growing.
Given that there is so much money to be made in catering, there are opportunities for nearly anyone to get into the act and begin working for a catering company. There is a high turnover rate in the field, with opening nearly always present for part time workers such as students and stay at home mothers. These vacancies include positions as bartenders, wait staff, prep cooks and dishwashers, among others. The function of a dishwasher in the restaurant is clear: washing dishes.
In catering however, the dishwasher does double duty as busser, picking up dishes and performing bus station cleaning duties as well as the actual dishwashing work. Keeping track of waste is also often part of this job. Prep cooking is one of the more challenging jobs in catering.
Prep cooks are largely engaged in chopping, slicing, etc. as well as packaging ingredients. A prep cook basically, has the task of making sure cooks have needed ingredients on hand. If they need diced carrots, you dice carrots.
If pasta needs to be prepared for a pasta salad, that is also part of the job. Prep cooks are also often tasked with such duties as preparing salads and soups while cooks are busy with entrees. Chefs are the most important members of the catering team. In charge of getting all food prepared in a timely fashion and out to the tables, this is far from an easy job. Cooking and plating dishes to make them appealing are the major elements of their work when out on a catering job.
The chef also takes care of purchasing ingredients, determining menu items and staffing the catering crew. A chef generally will have a few assistants to farm out some of this work to so that they do not become overburdened. A chef is usually the man (or gal) Friday of the catering company owner.
In many cases the owner is also the head chef. Wait staff for a catering job only has one real function: to get the food out. There are many people to a good catering wait staff.
Each waiter or waitress has up to three tables each that they must service. The trick is being able to get the food out quickly and by table so that everyone at one table has their main course, salad, desert all at the same. They need to be fast, gracious, courteous and high-end.
Catering jobs are not like working at a local diner. They require class and common sense.
Are you interested in working within the culinary world? Thera re are a variety of available positions, including catering jobs which may be suitable for you. Check out our website for the latest listings: chefsworld.net