7 Unwritten Rules of Professional Kitchens

7 Unwritten Rules of Professional Kitchens

Last Updated on September 18, 2023

Because of the kitchen’s intense environment, many unwritten kitchen rules have developed over time. If you are interested in becoming a kitchen staff and quickly rise through the ranks, then you need to consistently work hard and follow some of these unwritten rules of professional kitchens.

Here are the top seven unwritten rules of a professional kitchen worth your attention.

1. Never use another chef’s knife without their permission

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One thing about chefs is that they have a personal relationship with their tools, including their knives. Take a knife without asking for permission, and you will be pretty dead in the eyes of the chef you have taken their knife.

One type of knife that often forms an intimate bond with chefs is the Damascus knife. These exquisite blades are not only prized for their exceptional cutting performance but also for their stunning aesthetics. Damascus knives are renowned for their unique patterned blades, created by layering and forging multiple types of steel together. This meticulous craftsmanship not only results in a blade with superior sharpness and durability but also gives each knife a one-of-a-kind appearance.

Chefs often refer to Damascus knives as “the work of art in the kitchen.” The distinctive pattern on the blade not only showcases the knife’s quality but also reflects the skill and passion of the chef who wields it. Owning a Damascus knife is a source of pride for many culinary professionals, and they are often handed down through generations, symbolizing the legacy of culinary expertise within a family or kitchen.

These knives require special care to maintain their edge and appearance, and chefs invest time and effort into honing and cleaning them meticulously. Just as chefs respect the art of cooking, they also deeply respect the artistry of their knives, which are more than mere tools; they are an extension of the chef’s soul and expertise in the kitchen. So, whether you’re a professional chef or an avid home cook, wielding a Damascus knife is like holding a piece of culinary history and craftsmanship in your hand, a testament to the timeless bond between a chef and their cherished tools.

2. Always be on your toes

If you are considering café gratitude careers, then you need to know that restaurant work is a race. When a guest walks through that front door of the restaurant, their clock starts to click. So as kitchen staff, you need to ensure that the food the guest has ordered is ready within the shortest time possible to avoid any negative review. 

3. Clean as you go

This is one of the most common rules of the kitchen. Food preparation requires a clean station. This is what will mark a true kitchen professional- one who can handle the pressure and still maintain a clean workstation. In most cases, you will find that a person can cook well, but they cannot cook and clean as they go. This can make them look unprofessional. A true kitchen professional should know how to handle these two.

4. If you are not a cook then don’t walk behind the line

Wandering around the kitchen can be quite dangerous. With so many things that can leave a mark, such as hot pans, hot equipment, and sharp objects scattered around the kitchen, you wouldn’t want to wander in the kitchen and sustain injuries that may warrant a trip to the ER. So, if it is not in your job description, stay away from the kitchen.

5. Put your mobile phone away

Of course, the development of technology has enabled us to acquire a smartphone. But these smartphones can be very addictive. A kitchen is a place that requires your full attention and that’s why you need to put your smartphone away. Your phone can distract you, and create more stress that you never imagined. So, while in the kitchen, put the phone on vibrate or lock it up until the end of your shift.

6. No room for dull knives

Since the knives are among the essential tools of a cook, that means they keep them honed with the sharpest possible edge, polished, and clean. There is no place in the kitchen for dull knives, and any person who is willing to work in the kitchen should know that.

7. Support your kitchen team

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The rule of thumb in a functional kitchen is ‘all for one and one for all.’ As much as the team members may point out each other’s shortcomings, no one outside the team will ever have the right to criticize or harass the kitchen team.

You may also enjoy reading 20 Top Staple Foods From Around The World – Infographic and 7 Tips to Take Amazing Food Pictures When You’re Traveling

About Maria Kennedy

Maria Kennedy is the managing editor at Travel for Food Hub. Maria is on a full-tilt mission to share local food and travel inspiration. When she is not writing about food and travel, startups or social media, she is enjoying her time with her boys in sunny Spain.

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