Pastry chefs are in charge of making pastries, desserts and baked sweets. Depending on where they work, they might also be in charge of designing wedding cakes and dessert or sugar sculptures. In some environments, they might even bake bread or other flour products. Pastry chefs commonly find work in restaurants and bakeries, or with catering firms and cruise lines.
The word "chef" indicates that a bakery chef is in charge of the kitchen and can make many management decisions. For example, a restaurant pastry chef might be in charge of overseeing other kitchen staff, including cooks and servers. This depends on whether the restaurant also has other chefs on staff and their roles. In a restaurant, a pastry chef typically takes charge of preparing all desserts and sweets on the menu.
Most small, local bakeries don't need a chef on staff. However, bakeries that specialize in gourmet desserts or wedding cakes might hire a pastry chef. Here, a pastry chef is likely to work side-by-side with a baker. The baker, for example, would be in charge of mass-produced pastries like bread or croissants, while the pastry chef would work on more complex special order items and delicacies.
Some catering companies outsource their food production, while others have their own kitchen set-up. Companies that specialize in parties requiring cake, such as weddings or birthdays, might have a pastry chef on staff. This is especially true of high-end catering companies that work with multi-national companies, official government offices and other high-rank institutions.
Cruise ships are notorious for their impressive buffets and high-end dining, so it makes sense that many will hire a pastry chef. Cruise ships are all about show and presentation, so pastry chefs working in this environment often must create intricate cake designs, put together fancy towers of cookies or sweets and design desserts with unusual shapes to fit a theme or flavor of the night.
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Job Description for an Executive Pastry Chef
An executive pastry chef is responsible for overseeing the entire production of pastries, breads, sweets, ice cream, fillings and toppings, including their...