Professional Cook (Institution Entry)
Cooks perform all phases of kitchen activities including the preparation and presentation of food, basic menu planning/costing and they possess knowledge of safety, sanitation and food storage, plus human and customer relations.
Cooks can obtain professional designation at Levels 1, 2, or 3, progressing in knowledge and responsibility at each Level. A Professional Cook 1 is usually supervised and performs basic cooking and food preparation tasks utilizing knife skills, correct terminology, and a variety of cooking methods. They must be able to follow recipes, weigh and measure food accurately, and have an understanding of the major techniques and principles used in cooking, baking, and other aspects of food preparation. At Level 1, a professional cook should have a solid foundation of culinary skill.
A Professional Cook 2 usually works under some supervision and performs a variety of cooking and food preparation tasks using multiple methods, and should have a preliminary understanding of food costing, menu planning, and purchasing processes.
Usually working under limited supervision, a Professional Cook 3 will be competent at the major techniques and principles used in cooking, baking, and other aspects of food preparation. In addition, a Professional Cook 3 should be able to plan and cost menus and recipes, and have an understanding of the communication skills necessary to take a leadership role in the kitchen. At Level 3, a Professional Cook can obtain national designation as a Cook under the Interprovincial Standards Red Seal Program.
Creativity, a keen sense of taste and smell, interest in precision work and good memory for details.
The following education is recommended: Grade 10 or equivalent (Grade 12 is preferred), including English 10, Math 10, Science 10.
A Foodsafe Level 1 Certificate is required prior to enrolment in a training program.
The Apprenticeship Program is comprised of Levels 1-to-3 of progressive training, with each Level taking 6 weeks (180 hours) to complete, however certification can be achieved at any desired level (refer to Industry Training Authority for full details).
At Levels 1 and 2, apprentices are required to accumulate 1,000 hours of work-based training; at Level 3, it's 3,000, totalling 5,000 hours.