HIRING A PRIVATE CHEF FOR CHRISTMAS: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW

by | Dec 19, 2021 | Food, Food/Dining

Christmas is a time to relax, enjoy the festivities and spend quality time with family and friends. There are so many fun activities to do, and the good news is that if you do not want to spend your Christmas cooking, then you don’t have to.

Related: Five of the best Canadian wines for holiday season

Cooking the Christmas dinner is a time-consuming process that leaves you spending less time with your family and friends. If you want to spend less time in the kitchen and more time with your loved ones, a good solution would be to hire a private chef to take care of all your culinary needs. The following article gives you a breakdown of everything you need to know about hiring a private chef for Christmas.

Hiring the right private chef for Christmas

Before hiring a private chef, there is a set procedure you need to follow to ensure that the chef you hire will cater to your every need.

Get to know them

Once you have identified a potential private chef for your Christmas party, hold an interview with them. The questions you ask during the interview are very crucial since they’ll help you determine whether or not the chef is a perfect fit for you. Below are some of the questions you can begin with:
  • What is the one ingredient they must always have in the kitchen?
  • Did they undergo any professional training or guidance?
  • Which is that one dish that they can cook in a short span of time?
  • What meal did they have before the interview and did they cook it themselves?
  • Have they ever had a bad experience while cooking and if so, how did they handle the situation?
  • Is there a chef whose methods they follow religiously while cooking?
  • What is the best dish they’ve ever made and what was the inspiration behind it?
  • How do they deal with high-pressure situations?
  • What inspired them to be a chef?

You can add more questions to the above list depending on your requirements. You should also make a point to ask them about their previous experiences as a private chef, if there were any shortcomings, and the measures they took to overcome said shortcomings.

Photo by cottonbro from Pexels

Let them calculate the food cost

Asking the chef to do the numbers for you is an effective way of checking whether or not the chef will be able to handle your kitchen expenses. You should give them a dish and let them calculate the food cost. The chef should be able to make a list of the ingredients required to prepare the dish including their respective costs. Doing this is important as it lets you know how they optimize costs.

Let them prepare you a dish

After asking them the questions mentioned above and having them calculate the food cost, you will have a general idea about the chef as a person as well as their objectives. However, you can test their skills and abilities even further. You can ask them to prepare a dish for you. Having the chef prepare a dish and getting to taste it beforehand will give you a chance to analyze the methods the chef applies as they cook.

Give them a challenge

An alternative to the third step is to give the chef a challenge. Let them cook a dish for you with limited ingredients. Doing this gives you the chance to see how creative the chef can be with limited resources.

You’ll also get to see how systematic they are in their work. Having the chef prepare a meal beforehand lets you know whether or not the chef is messy and disorganized. You wouldn’t want a chef who leaves your kitchen in chaos. On the other hand, it is also important that your kitchen is clean and ready for the chef when they arrive so they can get to work immediately.

Photo by Yente Van Eynde from Pexels

Things to look out for when hiring a private chef for Christmas

While excellent cooking skills are a prerequisite, there are several other important qualities that should not be overlooked when hiring a private chef. You should factor in the following qualities when hiring a private chef for Christmas:

Creativity

When hiring a private chef, you should look out for their creativity. You want a chef who puts their creative mind to use. You want a chef who will come up with interesting Christmas recipes, and whose every dish isn’t repetitive. However, it is important to note that it is your job to not restrict the chef’s creativity. You should give them space to prepare the perfect feast for your Christmas dinner.  

Punctuality

Punctuality is another important quality that you should look out for. You want a chef who shows up on time. If your chef is on time, your Christmas festivities can proceed smoothly and according to schedule. Punctuality also reduces the amount of time people have to wait before they can eat.

Efficiency

You should also hire a chef who is efficient. A chef who is able to optimize food costs, especially when handling a large volume of ingredients. The chef should be able to prepare a precise meal plan, regardless of the number of guests who’ll be at your Christmas party. They should be able to do this without wasting food.

Photo by cottonbro from Pexels

Patience

A chef should be able to handle high pressure. You want to hire a chef who is patient and can handle stress especially when things aren’t going according to plan. The chef should be able to adapt accordingly to different situations. They should also be able to handle the kitchen staff.

Accountability

The chef should also be accountable. There is a possibility that you may not completely agree with the dish, or due to some negligence, the food is a little different than what you expected it to be. The private chef you hire should be able to take accountability, accept criticism, and improve upon them.

Attention to detail

The chef needs to be alert at all times in the kitchen. Attention to detail in the kitchen is very important. They must ensure that all the utensils are clean before they reach the table. They should also ensure that no ingredient is missing and that the presentation of the food is perfect before it leaves the kitchen.

Hiring a personal chef: Final thoughts

So, there you have it; everything you need to know about hiring a private chef to create the Christmas dinner of your dreams for you. Finally, you can unwind, relax, celebrate with the perfect champagne, and enjoy the holidays with your loved ones without having to slave away in the kitchen all day.

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