Saturday, January 23, 2010

Is Kitchen still a Man's World? by Chef Akshay Kulkarni

For too many years a woman’s place was in the Kitchen – except when that kitchen happened to have a restaurant attached to it. Though every woman was expected to be a good cook, conventional wisdom declared that men would be great Chefs.
It is a known fact that women have to make life decisions that men are not asked to make. Rather, they are being forced to make the decision. Will I have a family or a job? And that…. is the base line. The present ambitious generation of women has undoubtedly opted for the later. Then… why is it that we still do not see more women chefs than men?
It has always been a misconception that “It’s harder in the culinary profession than in others because our hours are strange”. The challenge of balancing career and family life is especially difficult in the restaurant industry. Well, I do not buy this argument at all? What about the timings & work in call centers, MNC’S, IT Companies and Banks? The pressures are mind boggling and the timings are as better or worse as that of a chef.
After watching the film 3 Idiots, I am of the opinion that today’s generation of youngsters will opt for a passion driven career rather than money oriented. Industry’s top companies are working to eradicate barriers that have kept women from advancing their careers in the culinary profession. They have realized that it’s good business to move skilled women up the ranks. The World Association of Chefs Societies and the Indian Federation of Culinary Associations are in the process of creating an environment within the Industry where women feel their contributions are valued and that they can grow and take on new projects so that they want to stay and prosper.
Indian hotels can boast of a very few woman big wigs in the culinary fraternity. Chef Neeta Nagaraj, Corporate Chef, Jaypee Hotels, Chef Manisha Bhasin, Executive Chef, ITC Maurya, New Delhi, Chef Madhu Krishnan, Executive Chef, ITC Gardenia, Bangalore to name a few. Thanks to the hard work of these chefs, they are a great motivating factor for many young women to join the culinary profession and grow to this honorable title of professional chef.
Women make great chefs because multi tasking is a way of life. They possess determination under difficult circumstances and refuse to give up. They are sensitive to the needs and wants of others – guests and staff alike. The culinary industry is growing and there is an abundant requirement of chefs and in particular Women Chefs. The day is not very far when we will see women chefs taking over this mantle. As a chef myself, it will be very encouraging to see more woman chefs grow and prosper in this wonderful culinary industry.

at par...

Fine Skills

Commitment & Dedication

Budding to become professionals

Part of the team

in the front line

with and amongst all


  1. A spa resort lets you and your friends pay attention to a few people whose needs are largely ignored most of the year -- yourselves.

    Rio Pousadas

  2. Also included are rooming and boarding houses, such as fraternity houses, sorority houses, off-campus dormitories, and workers' camps.

    Pousadas Ubatuba

  3. On behalf of all the budding women chef's in the world-
    THANKYOU, sir!