[Sca-cooks] Professional indignation, was: Wow. Robert Irvine exposed

Christine Seelye-King kingstaste at mindspring.com
Wed Feb 20 11:40:09 PST 2008

>> I agree that the word "chef" has become bandied about rather liberally
>> lately from the meaning of a true chef. Nowadays it seems that
>> anyone who graduates from the spate of cooking schools that have
>> sprung up around the country can be called a chef.
Or not.  They call me Chef Selene in the local SCA, despite my 
protestations of lack of paperwork to that effect.

So where did Irvine buy his cookery degree?  I'd love to have a 
five-star pigskin, just for grins and giggles.



no no No NO NO! Graduating from a training program does NOT make you a chef.
When I graduated from my apprenticeship, I got a certificate from the Labor
Dept. saying I was a Certified Cook.  My ACF creds stated that I was a
Certified Culinarian.  We've talked about this before, but the CHEF title
only comes from time, experience, and having the job that carries the title
and the responsibilities.  You can get certified as a Chef, but only after
putting in a set amount of time holding that title among other requirements.
I tell kids going into or soon-to-come-out-of culinary schools all the time
that they will NOT be a chef when they come out, they will just be ready to
start learning.  (Especially culinary schools, at least apprentices get the
benefit of real-world work knowledge!) 

I've had several people in the academic field tell me I should just go ahead
and buy myself a Bachelor's Degree from somewhere, but I have always thought
it seemed wrong, someone somewhere would find out (hello? Mr. Irvine?).  But
buying a culinary degree sticks in my craw even worse!  LOL (I know you were
joking, Selene, at least I hope so!)  What will we think of next - buying a
Peerage?  (I have two, maybe I could sell one....NOT)  Oh, wait, Irvine just
went ahead and claimed his Knighthood, so no purchase is necessary, I guess.

Ok, enough professional indignation for me.  I've been watching old Julia
Child tapes today, because I'm prepping for our first meeting of the
Culinary Historians of Georgia meeting tomorrow night.  Our first program is
devoted to Julia, because this month marks the 45th anniversary of the first
airing of "The French Chef".  I'm doing the foods - appetizers from several
of her books.  I'll report on it sometime this weekend.  

aka Chef Christy (currently holding several jobs with the title 'Chef

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