It’s Been A While, How Are You? Doing Well Here Thanks ;-)

Good evening all! How are you? Hope you’re doing well :-)

It seems like forever since I sat down and typed a blog entry so I apologize. Part of the reason is that under my employment contract I had to sign a confidentiality contract so typing about anything work-related would have been a violation of that. I was just working a lot and not really getting a chance to sit down and gather my thoughts.

Quite a bit has happened though. I worked (note the past tense…) for Absolute Taste for the last 3 months and learned a lot during the time I was there. Before I started, the biggest party I had helped cater was for 62 people with 3 Chefs, and at the time it was a mammoth task. Within the first few weeks that number would be smashed and a new dawn would break. While over at the Olympic Park I was part of a 3 Chef team working in a Corporate pavilion and we were regularly putting out food for 100+ people, with some days being over 200. I saw how it’s all about the prep you can do ahead of an event and how you can break down the cooking of the food to halt it at a key point. Consideration for the type of kitchen you will have once on location, the equipment you will have access to and the time you have to get the food out to the guests are some of the factors we then take into consideration to determine how best to finish the food for presentation to the guests.

I met and worked with some great Chef’s and take away a lot of lessons that have started me on the road of discovery. In the short-term the lessons will also come in very handy as we’ve had our first booking for a wedding in September! A friend of ours from our school days has asked us to cater her sister’s wedding. It’s in a marquee at their family home, the guest list is 200+ currently and there are 3 of us doing the cooking! :-) For me though it is a very exciting proposition because the brief suits my style of cooking; Great British Family Favorites meets Jamie Oliver’s Italian Family Style Dining! We’re talking Roast Pork with all the trimmings and Charcuterie platters and large bowls of Salad served at the table for you to help yourself :-)

Another interesting opportunity also came along, this time in the form of a full-time permanent role with one of the biggest names in BBQ – Weber Stephen Products! The role itself is very unique and when I saw it there was no way I could allow it to pass by. It is a split role with 1 part being based at Weber’s Grill Academy in Oxfordshire helping to teach the Grill Courses, and the 2nd part is helping to run their Airstream demonstration trailer that tours the British Isles giving public BBQ cooking demonstrations. Like I said, it’s quite a unique role, but when I saw the job description it seemed that the last 10-12 years of my life and work experience were all culminating in this role. While I wanted to work out the Olympics, I made this Big Decision with my Heart and knowing opportunities like this don’t come along too often I grabbed it with both hands!

Weber Airstream

I had my first day on Wednesday, I’ve met quite a lot of the team and spent the last 2 days in the Academy. It’s been a bit of a whirlwind few days but everyone is really nice and the atmosphere in the academy is great. I’m looking forward to getting learning more and really getting into the role as the weeks and months, progress :-)

The things I’m learning about working with the BBQ’s though is great so watch for a series of BBQ themed blog posts… ;-)

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About richardpholden

Chef living in Henley-on-Thames working for Weber BBQ's UK. Passionate about food and championing local/niche suppliers. Available for private catering, in-home cooking lessons and menu consultation. In this blog I hope to honestly share some of my journey with you, the highs and the lows, as well as post thoughts that have provoked me and made me think about something in my life, or in the larger world, in a slightly different way. These are my thoughts and my interpretations and questions on any given topic. I love the kinds of questions that make us look at an aspect of our life and delve into it more than usual. I hope you enjoy!

Posted on July 20, 2012, in Updates and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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