Cooks, Restaurant

Description

Prepare, season, and cook dishes such as soups, meats, vegetables, or desserts in restaurants. May order supplies, keep records and accounts, price items on menu, or plan menu.

Tasks

  • Inspect and clean food preparation areas, such as equipment and work surfaces, or serving areas to ensure safe and sanitary food-handling practices.
  • Ensure food is stored and cooked at correct temperature by regulating temperature of ovens, broilers, grills, and roasters.
  • Ensure freshness of food and ingredients by checking for quality, keeping track of old and new items, and rotating stock.
  • Turn or stir foods to ensure even cooking.
  • Season and cook food according to recipes or personal judgment and experience.
  • Bake, roast, broil, and steam meats, fish, vegetables, and other foods.
  • Weigh, measure, and mix ingredients according to recipes or personal judgment, using various kitchen utensils and equipment.
  • Portion, arrange, and garnish food, and serve food to waiters or patrons.
  • Observe and test foods to determine if they have been cooked sufficiently, using methods such as tasting, smelling, or piercing them with utensils.
  • Wash, peel, cut, and seed fruits and vegetables to prepare them for consumption.
  • Carve and trim meats such as beef, veal, ham, pork, and lamb for hot or cold service, or for sandwiches.
  • Substitute for or assist other cooks during emergencies or rush periods.
  • Consult with supervisory staff to plan menus, taking into consideration factors such as costs and special event needs.
  • Keep records and accounts.
  • Coordinate and supervise work of kitchen staff.
  • Prepare relishes and hors d'oeuvres.
  • Estimate expected food consumption, requisition or purchase supplies, or procure food from storage.
  • Butcher and dress animals, fowl, or shellfish, or cut and bone meat prior to cooking.
  • Plan and price menu items.
  • Bake breads, rolls, cakes, and pastries.

Knowledge

Medicine and Dentistry
Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.
History and Archeology
Knowledge of historical events and their causes, indicators, and effects on civilizations and cultures.
Fine Arts
Knowledge of the theory and techniques required to compose, produce, and perform works of music, dance, visual arts, drama, and sculpture.

Skills

Science
Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
Equipment Maintenance
Performing routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed.
Installation
Installing equipment, machines, wiring, or programs to meet specifications.
Programming
Writing computer programs for various purposes.
Repairing
Repairing machines or systems using the needed tools.

Abilities

Sound Localization
The ability to tell the direction from which a sound originated.
Explosive Strength
The ability to use short bursts of muscle force to propel oneself (as in jumping or sprinting), or to throw an object.
Night Vision
The ability to see under low light conditions.
Peripheral Vision
The ability to see objects or movement of objects to one's side when the eyes are looking ahead.
Glare Sensitivity
The ability to see objects in the presence of glare or bright lighting.

Interests

Realistic
Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
Enterprising
Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.
Artistic
Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.
Conventional
Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
Social
Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
Investigative
Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.

Work Style

Dependability
Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Self Control
Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
Attention to Detail
Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Cooperation
Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
Stress Tolerance
Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
Concern for Others
Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
Adaptability/Flexibility
Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
Integrity
Job requires being honest and ethical.
Initiative
Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
Social Orientation
Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.

Work Values

Support
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.
Relationships
Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
Independence
Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
Achievement
Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
Working Conditions
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.
Recognition
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer advancement, potential for leadership, and are often considered prestigious. Corresponding needs are Advancement, Authority, Recognition and Social Status.

Lay Titles

Back Line Cook
Banquet Chef
Banquet Cook
Breakfast Cook
Broiler Chef or Cook
Chef
Chef de Froid
Cook
Cook Apprentice
Dinner Cook
Executive Chef
Food Service Worker
Foreign Food Specialty Cook
Fry Cook
Garde Manger
Grill Cook
Ice Cream Chef
Larder Cook
Line Cook
Lunch Cook
Pastry Baker
Prep Cook (Preparation Cook)
Railroad Cook
Roundsman
Sandwich Artist
Saucier
Sous Chef
Specialty Cook
Specialty Foods Cook
Station Cook
Vegetable Cook

National Wages and Employment Info

Median Wages (2008):
$10.59 hourly, $22,030 annual.
Employment (2008):
1,000,710 employees