Culinary creativity is the burning ember in every chef’s chest which gives meaning and enjoyment to their work. But it is the organization of the kitchen, or lack thereof, which can make life either easier or a living hell. Having a well organized kitchen, with clearly defined duties and expectations of each team member, is essential to a successful kitchen. It also helps diminish the already high levels of stress which are part of our daily culinary experience.
Organization: the Kitchen Station Task List
The Excel workbook below is easy to modify for your establishment and will work equally as well in a cafeteria or a fine dining restaurant. Essentially, you detail the specific duties expected from each station in your kitchen. You can use this form as a Kitchen Station List, a Kitchen Opening List, a Kitchen Closing List, whatever. Simply change the content to meet your needs. What is particularly helpful is that if you find something which is not being done consistently by your crew, add it to the task list, print, implement and now it is a printed (and documentable) part of their daily routine.
The kitchen station task list form is separate from your prep list. It details your expectations for whoever is working a specific station in your kitchen. Click on the image to open a larger, easier to read copy to get a feel for how I have used it, then modify it for your own priorities. It is set up to be put on a clip board and used at each kitchen station everyday of the week as a checklist for the crew to meet your expectations of set-up, break-down, whatever.
The kitchen task list below has tabs at the bottom of the sheet detailing responsibilities for: Supervisors, Day Prep, Night Prep, Saute, Pantry, Saucier, Grill, and a blank to copy and paste if you need to create more. To change the names of the tabs, right click, select “rename”, enter your new name and hit “enter”.
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Comments from before Site Migration