If you're interested in working in the restaurant industry, you may want to consider a career as a kitchen assistant. Kitchen assistants spend a lot of time making the kitchen a safe and clean environment for chefs, and may also perform some light food preparation duties.
Cleaning the Kitchen
The kitchen assistant is often responsible for making sure that countertops are clean, so that chefs will have an acceptable work space. It is not uncommon for the kitchen assistant to wash dishes and cutlery for the chef, so that he will always have clean utensils to work with. When trash is left from the kitchen after the chef(s) have prepared a meal (i.e. inedible parts of vegetables, feathers from poultry, or wrappers from seasoning packages) the kitchen assistant is responsible for disposing of these items in a timely fashion.
Kitchen assistants will sometimes assist the chef in preparing the food for restaurant guests. This includes tasks like chopping or peeling fruits and vegetables or taking food in or out of the oven. Some kitchen assistants will help the chef to cut meat for an entr�e, pluck feathers from poultry, or gut and vein fish for seafood dishes. It's important for a kitchen assistant to know how to handle sharp knives and utensils well for this part of the job.
A kitchen assistant should know how to perform light kitchen duties, such as preparing toast or making coffee. Stirring or heating pre-made dishes, such as soups or speciality sauces, may also be included in the job description. Knowing how to operate kitchen appliances such as the stove and oven, as well as toasters, blenders, and coffee makers are a necessity for fulfilling light cooking duties.
Polishing silverware, cleaning glasses, and making sure that dinner plates are spotless before they are placed on the table are often in the kitchen assistant's job description as well. Some restaurants or dining facilities may call on kitchen assistants to make sure there is an adequate supply of silverware and drinking glasses for waiters to present to guests during the time that the restaurant is open, which could mean polishing or washing dishes several times a shift.
For companies that deliver food to guests or other companies, the kitchen assistant will sometimes help to load and unload the deliveries, or will drive the deliveries to their specified location. Once a new shipment of food arrives, kitchen assistants will often organise the food in the storage area, so that it is easily accessible to chefs.