I was recently reading this article in Foodservice Rep, titled “Black Hat”. Chef George was commenting on the titles of chef and cooks and the issues that this appears to be creating for food professionals. Comments made were:
– “the need to stop the exploitation of confusing pretentious titles and accurately use the terms “cook” and “chef” in their appropriate context.
– Unless a concerted effort to describe their role accurately is made …cookery as a trade will become an old-fashioned vocation and fade into history.
-Losing public understanding of the role of a chef and the role may well vanish into antiquity.
-The column concludes that people who prepare and cook food for a living should be called cooks not chefs”.
Does anyone really care whether a person cooking their meal is called a chef or a cook? I certainly don’t. Is it really that important? Why does society insist on getting bogged down with silly labels? Where is the value add for such a discussion? I personally do not like labels of any sort or placing people or things into neat boxes and categories. It is such a restrictive and narrow minded view on Life.
I believe that the Ancient Greeks got it right when they assigned one word to anyone that prepared food professional or otherwise – “mageiros”; a cook. After all is it not what we are actually doing? At the end of the day labels appear to be ego driven and negative energy focused. When a person cooking loves their craft and they do it with genuine LOVE they are not interested in debates on appropriate titles but rather on channeling positive energy into what they do and creating nourishing healing dishes. Perhaps its time we dropped the labels and that is what they are; just words and worried more about eco rather than ego.
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As my favourite philosopher Socrates once said all that I know for sure is that “I know that I know nothing”.