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Baker Overview

Truth is, sometimes you just have to mix it up. Luckily, mixing it up is a baker’s specialty.

Bakers know how to shake it and they know how to make it – dessert that is. One of the oldest food preparation jobs on the planet, the art of baking is hard to master, but the rewards of a baking job well done can be easily measured

From biscuits and muffins to pies and cakes, nobody in the kitchen spreads joy — and icing — like a baker.

Responsibilities

  • Keep it clean. Anyone who has ever worked in a kitchen understands the importance of cleanliness when handling food.
  • An eye for presentation. An aesthetic sense goes a long way toward knowing how to arrange displays and packaging your baked goods for maximum impact.
  • Measure, mix and weigh. Figuring out ingredient amounts will take up much of your day-to-day routine.
  • Cut and mould. Handling the dough has got to be one of the most soothing activities in a baker’s daily schedule.

Skills

  • Original recipes. Like a jazz musician, you’ve got to know your standards, but you also want to be able to improvise. Having a few original recipes will set you apart from the applicant pool.
  • Accurate measurements. The ability to measure on the fly, often without the use of scales and cups, is one of the true marks of a natural-born baker. However, most established bakeries will expect your skills to include using scales and following measurements exactly.
  • Familiarity with equipment. You should have a thorough knowledge of professional high-temperature ovens, various equipment, utensils, and food storage temperatures and procedures.  
  • Detail-oriented. There’s a thin line between skill and true talent, and the evidence is usually in the details. Bakers take pride in every aspect of their delicate creations and decorations.

Experience

Food handler’s certificates are a requirement in most states. At the very minimum, an understanding of food safety standards will be necessary for working in most grocery store bakeries. 

Having worked as an apprentice to an established baker will help you get your foot in the door at a high-end bakery. A culinary degree is not necessary but is always a plus. 

An ability to follow recipes exactly, a willingness to learn and a passion for what you do is a must when choosing any career. Luckily, passion is easy to come by at the patisserie.

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