A Day In The Life Of A Pastry Chef – Part 2

April 18, 2008 4 Comments

A Day In The Life Of A Pastry Chef

I started this post yesterday with Part 1 of a Day In The Life of Pastry Chef Jennifer Field. Here is the second installment describing a typical day for Jenni at The Ravenous Pig: An American Gastropub in Winterpark, FL. Chef Jennifer is a graduate of the Orlando Culinary Academy in Florida, but if you are interested in learning more about culinary arts school or baking & pastry school, please check out GatewayGourmet’s Cooking School Resource Center.

8:30am: Cheese is grated and butter is cut into the flour mixture. Now, scale out and put your pretzels in the mixer. Knead 5 minutes. Go back to the biscuits. Add the wet ingredients and get ready to roll. 5 minutes are up already?! Wash your hands, put your dough in a bowl to rise (in the fridge if it’s really warm in the kitchen). Back to the biscuits. Roll in the cheese in 6 additions. Popcorn timer goes off. Stir the corn and set it for 20 more. Wash your hands. Make the other batch of biscuits. Save the “ugly ends” and bake them off for lunch service. Put the lovely biscuits on trays to be baked off for dinner service. Mark biscuits and popcorn off the list. Wash your hands.


Get out your mass of pretzel dough. Divide into 48 3oz. balls. Popcorn timer goes off again. Stir and set for 20 more minutes. Wash your hands. Keep that pretzel dough covered! Don’t let the dough dry out. Have your sheet pans sprayed and covered too. Now, roll 48 pretzels””16 per sheet tray. In the freezer they go. Timer goes off again. Don’t stir, but set for 15 more minutes.


(Still in the middle of pretzel-dom) Thank goodness Lucia is here! Please paco the ice creams and let’s split up this list!


Pretzels are done. They need to freeze until hard. This makes them easier to pan up after blanching. Okay, until they’re hard, I can make the fondue. Wash your hands. Oh, wait! Do we have whipped butter for bread service? Better throw 11 pounds in the mixer with smoked sea salt and let her rip. Okay, now back to the fondue. Wash your hands. Make a basic Béchamel, add mustard and other good stuff. Don’t forget the porter reduction. Melt in the cheese toward the end.


Put the butter in a Cambro. Label everything. Portion the fondue and label/refrigerate. Wash your hands.


30 minutes until lunch service begins. Gotta get the mise en place together for the station. Sauces go in the steam well. Whipped cream? Check. Chocolate sand? Check. Orange confit? Check. Mint tips? Check. Biscuits and pretzels? Check. Get the bread baskets ready and pie pans (for heating up biscuits/pretzels to order). Okay. Now we’re ready, keep going with the prep.


Blanch and bake off pretzels. Don’t forget the baking soda in the blanching water if you want your pretzels to be pretzel colored, otherwise they will be light and won’t have the crackly pretzels bite on the outside. Wash your hands.


Everything is paco’d. Lucia, what are you going to do? Brulees and chocolate peanut butter terrine? I love it. I’ll deal with the triple chocolate semifreddo, the cinnamon rolls and the pig tails. When you’re done with the terrine, could you make the langues du chat for the brulees? Great!


Make the triple chocolate semifreddo. Wash your hands. 3 bowls, each with a different chocolate. Make your custard base; strain it into the 3 chocolates””weigh it so it’s evenly distributed. Whisk everyone smooth. “Order in: ugly ends!” “Ugly ends, heard.” Throw six on a pan and put them in the oven. Back to the chocolate. Whip your cream, divide it among your bases. “Order in: soft pretzel!” “Soft pretzel, heard.” Throw those in the oven, take the ends to the window. A quenelle of grain mustard, a ramekin of fondue. Pretzels in the basket and it all goes to the window. Wash your hands. Back to the chocolate. Layer one goes in. He goes in the freezer. Leave the other two bowls in the walk-in so when layer one is frozen, you can add layer 2 and then layer 3.

Part 1 of A Day in the Life of a Pastry Chef

Part 2 of A Day in the Life of a Pastry Chef

Part 3 of A Day in the Life of a Pastry Chef

Part 4 of A Day in the Life of a Pastry Chef


Last modified on Thu 13 February 2014 4:58 pm

Filed in: Culinary Careers

Comments (4)

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  1. giz says:

    I need a nap now – right after I wash my hands :)

  2. Maple says:

    Where is part 3??? :(

  3. A'Mara Stiles says:

    lol I know right that’s pretty cool how you guys love your jobs.its so cool

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