Friday, 23 December 2011

Guest Chef Blogger - Evadeth Fech

Même mes légumes scrumptious et exquis de bébé !

Its almost been a year since my last posting...Bad Form Chef! Never mind! You have all seemed to manage without me quite well and that's a good thing.

At the current moment, writing has taken a back seat and the kitchen is forefront, especially at this time of year, yet I recently asked a fellow Chef within the Culinary Brethren if he would mind me posting an email he sent me...kind of a guest blog thing...He agreed, much to my delight!

So without further bollocks from me, until my usual round-up at the end, I have great pleasure to introduce my first guest Chef blogger....

Chef Evadeth Fech and his title piece, 'Can You Pass The Vaseline?'

For those who don't work in the industry there are several references in this song which I will endeavour to explain. I will also need to set the scene for full comprehension and understanding of the lyrics....

The day was black Friday...the busiest day of the chefs calender year

The scene was a busy city centre restaurant experiencing a good old fashioned roasting ( fisting or arse raping as we call it in the trade, which should explain the references to vaseline)

The composers were several chefs working the line fuelled on far too many cans of a certain well known red canned cola drink, doughnuts, sugared jelly sweets and a continual loop of traditional Christmas songs!

The catalysts were customers, who throughout the festive period, had constantly picked apart the carefully prepared festive menu and decided that their own menu based on their intolerances, preferences and their 'superior culinary knowledge' would be better suited. So, on the busiest day of the year (at one point we had 52 people waiting to order known as "52 open") the kitchen was receiving orders (checks) for dishes and side orders that were not only unavailable on the festive menu but some were not even on the regular a la carte menu and would need preparing on the spot! (Sauteed new potatoes carrots and parsnips and fries being the pick of the bunch!) Which to a lesser team may have put them in the weeds! However....

When this tune came on, the caffeine and sugar fuelled chefs penned the unforgettable chorus, quickly got on with the task in hand and the rest fell into place quickly after. If this Christmas ditty serves nothing else but to raise a smile amongst my fellow chefs then It will have served its original purpose.

This is not the original version as certain lines were more specific to this particular establishment and would not have made sense to Joe public.. I hope you enjoy it..

To the tune of 'Stop the Cavalry' by Jona Lewie

Hey Mr Public, please stop the orders,
We can't really take it anymore,

Hey Mr customer, your checks hurt our arses,
Our ring pieces are mighty sore!

Oh I say its tough,
We have had enough!
Can you pass the vaseline

Christmas and a la carte, really ain't so bad,
But your 'special' dishes make us sad,
Plus your criticism, makes us all sad,
And where the f***s this vaseline?!

Sauteed potatoes? Make them quick!
Your dietary requirements make us sick!
Stick to the menu there's plenty to pick!
I'm all out of vaseline!

We are getting bum-bummed
We are getting bummed
Bum b bum bum bum b bum
We are getting bummed

We are getting bum-bummed
We are getting bummed
Bum b bum bum bum b bum
We are getting bummed!

Wish you'd stayed at home,
This Christmas

(M-y ar-se hurts, m-y ar-se hurts
My arse hurts m-y ar-se hurts)

Hey Mr Customer, please stop these orders,
We can't really take it anymore,
'Fifty two open' but you don't really care
"Just make sure my steak is medium rare!"
"Carrots and parsnips and fries for us to share"
Who's used all the vaseline?

We are getting bum-bummed,
We are getting bummed,
Bum b bum bum bum b bum
We are getting bummed

We are getting bum-bummed 
We are getting bummed
Bum b bum bum bum b bum,
We are getting bummed

Sauteed potatoes? Make them quick!
Your 'dietary intolerances' make US sick!
Stick to the menu awkward prick!
Someone buy some vaseline!!!

Wish you'd stayed at home for Christmas

(M-y ar-se hurts m-y ar-se hurts,
My arse hurts m-y ar--r-r-se hurts)

Written by Chef Evadeth Fech and the Chargrill Warblers

Copyright 2011-2012

Right you lot...I'm back for my round-up as always and can't stop laughing! Anyone reading this will now hear the original in the car, on the radio at work or sitting round the dinner table with your friends and family and all you will be able to think of is singing the chorus at full vocal volume...just for shits and giggles!

Bloody amazing Chef Evadeth Fech and thank you for being my first Guest Chef Blogger! Wishing You and your Team all the best and good vibes on Sunday!

So, now for the news....

Yeah, I'm a Chef! This time of year I couldn't give a proverbial if 'Mockney' has created a new piece of plastic that crushes bones to create a marrow powder or if 'Ramsay' has moved on from botox to using the latest Heston creation as a face cream! It's sodding Xmas and I can't be arsed...I'm too busy dealing with the general public and their inane requests! News will return in the new year!

A couple of things to look out for though...

New to the 'Beyond The Hotplate' section is Student Cooking whom I recently wrote a Guest Blog for and by clicking this LINK will send you straight there to visit them! A great site to peruse and these guys and girls should be commended for their ingenuity and dedication to getting the new generation to cook...especially on such a low budget! Well done !

Secondly is Lee Cooper Photography in the 'Beyond The Kitchen' section! An amazing photographer and Chef with food on his mind 99% of the day (the other 1% is when he is sleeping!) Go check out his site by following the link!

Thirdly...a new Chef Profile is due...Eyes open and RSS feed on full alert for the one and only Ops Head Chef Dave J Critchley from The Noble House!

So on that note its time for me to go...

Until then have a great Xmas and New Year and to all Chefs in the UK and across the Globe...stay strong, stay true...and if that fails...tell them to DO ONE!

Au revoir mes amis!

Le Chef Grincheux

Monday, 10 January 2011

Ban The Brands!

Bonsoir mes morceaux moites de monkfish...Joyeux Noël et nouvelle année heureuse !

What a way to start a new year! The untimely passing of British actor Pete Postlethwaite, musical genius Gerry Rafferty and one of our Brethren, Ainsley the Big Yin!

No readers that’s not Mr Ainsley 'rattle yer pots and pans' Harriot before you get excited (although it would have been a better choice by the Grim Reaper) but a member of the Culinary Fraternity from Ayrshire in Scotland.

Big Yin was an old school Chef! True to his culinary roots with a wicked sense of humour and a true taste for life, family and food. He will be sorely missed by all that knew him, past and present, and will live on in our hearts, memories and stories. Our thoughts go out to his Family and Friends at this difficult time.

May the Culinary Angels lead you to that great Kitchen in the skies Chef....C.C.I.P (Cook & Create in Peace)

And so to the long awaited new post from the Grumpy Chef...

A change in direction recently has postponed my 'jovial' postings yet it has moved me to write again and force feed the inner workings of my grumpy persona...aren't you the lucky ones!

My current position is Head Chef with a 'branded restaurant chain' which for legal reasons I cannot name, nor would I dare to, for fear of death by pizza dough!

My career turned upside down with the knowledge I cannot cook my way. A true chef nightmare. Being told how to cook...God forbid! Yet this is where I find myself, trapped in a world of youngsters, pizza ovens, foreigners and temperamental Italian development Chefs who, for their sins, actually understand the fundamentals of classic cuisine but are bound by the constrains of the our FSA (Food Standards Agency) and Company procedures and policies.

I entered my current position with eyes open, hoping to make a difference, but was blocked at every turn by the Company and their archaic outlook on quality, cuisine and safety. I thought the FSA was bad! These 'people' make them look like choirboys and even the mention of the word 'audit' sends shivers down the spines of every General Manager (average age being 26) within the Company and sends them into a 3 month long panic.

Never in my years as a Chef have I seen such a ill-informed regimented kitchen or lack of respect for creativeness. Its mind boggling, truly it is!

What is worse, to me, is that the age of these 'cooks' is laughable and they are brainwashed to company standard and use employment law like their bible...its a fucking disgrace!

Every Chef and member of the true Culinary Brethren knows the unwritten rules...we all do! Yet these 'people' use employment law and legislation to benefit themselves.

Why is that a problem Chef”, I hear you cry...quite simple, they only use it to benefit themselves...and that, my al dente pommes de terre, is not only uncalled for but against the Culinary Oath and our 'Rules'! They have no concept of this regardless of my efforts to instil the rules of the true kitchen into them.

I would give you a fore instance but there are way too many I would want to divulge. Instead I will relinquish one quick story...

A young 'cook' came to me the other day requesting a pay rise and a new job title. He wanted to be Junior Sous Chef. I asked how long he had been with the company...9 months...okay, and where were you before that...I was a bartender...Hmm, okay, how does NO sound?

Nine months...NINE FUCKING MONTHS???

I have had Chefs work for over 7 years to even be good enough to rise to that level and not only be good enough but earn the respect of other Chefs to be even considered for that position and because you are in a branded chain, that ain’t worth shit in the Culinary Industry, you want all that after nine months...DO ONE!

Sod the procedures and policies...In my honest opinion, no one has the right to even call themselves a Chef unless they have been wrung through the mangle clockwise, passed back through anticlockwise and then pressed with a fire iron to create the sharpest crease known to man (or woman for all the feminists out there).

I have discussed my recent move and torment with colleagues, hoping I was wrong in my observations...I wasn't! Not only did they agree with me but became rather irate and infuriated that these cooks (and the company) had the audacity to even use the term 'Chef' in all documents, contracts and conversations.

Thank you Brethren! Its obviously not just me!

The crowning 'turd in the water pipe' is that people actually come to these food factories to eat! They cant get enough of it the deals? The vouchers? The area discount cards? Of course it bloody is! Even worse is the clientèle are middle/upper class...they could afford something better...a greater culinary experience, yet they choose these places because of the deals! I am astounded and confused at this!

We all enjoy food...its a necessity. So why not try your local, independent or managed public house or restaurant? They need the support. They need the business! Not these manufactured, self indulgent, arrogant and obnoxious food factories where you are just another face. A meal ticket to profit and bottom line! A plastic customer who constantly persists for seasoning and parmesan before tasting the dish...You are better than that! We, as Chefs, are better than that! Trust Us...we know what we are talking about and our only aim is to give you a fantastic culinary experience that you will enjoy and savour! That's why we train for so long dealing with copious amounts of crap from our peers to be the best we can be!

Needless to say I am now looking for my path back to my Culinary roots and to excite customers again with properly made, freshly produced, locally sourced cuisine...created by the Chefs of times gone, constantly looking to improve and perfect each dish....striving to create something new, something fun or something exquisite.

Long Live the Old School...Long Live the 'True Chef'!

So on that note, the News...

Okay...He was back again in the papers last week after a sabbatical...Chef Ramsay has been to the local hair transplant facility and had work done...but was it really only his hair?  Click the link and decide for yourselves...

Punch have been brought up on Fire Regulation breaches at one of their London Pubs...about time they got their asses felt (and not in a good way), even if it was a small one...

Okay, a new addition to the blog...a new and fresh section for other sites not related to the Catering Industry but well worth a visit...

First up is Le Garcon de Glasgow!  The site objective is to feature the most creative and interesting individuals in Glasgow and has proven massive in the UK and across the water so for all those fashion mongers and trend setters, get clicking over to Le Garcon de Glasgow and see what style is all about!

Second on my non-culinary site list is something true to my heart...after being there from the beginning, this site is moving fast and gaining notoriety as a promotional and networking tool
for your private, personal and professional life online
...Please click the link and get your account sorted as this site is going to be the forefront of our lives...I give you Waynesworld!  For those wanting a sneak preview of my account then click the link...

Jaillissent mes warthogs bien arrondis merveilleux. Je dois loin et vous offrir bonne nuit…

Je suis de retour!

Le Chef Grincheux