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Chef’s Uniform

It is said that the Chef’s Traditional Uniform as we see it today, was the inspiration of the great 16th century chef Marie-Antoine Careme.  Know as the greatest chef of his time, Marie-Antoine disliked the grey uniforms of his staff and changed them to white to reflect cleanliness within his kitchen.

Today the traditional chef’s uniform consists of a double breasted jacket, trousers, hat, apron, necktie and clogs.  The chef’s uniform is one of the few professions other than the military where you can recognise the rank of the person by their uniform, especially from the hat!

Chef  Jackets

The chef’s jacket is usually double breasted and can be buttoned up either way, this is very useful as a busy chef will have unavoidable stains on their jacket and then can simply button it up the other way at the end of the evening and go and meet their public.  Chef’s jackets are also made of thick cotton which is especially designed to act as a barrier against hot liquids and can be washed at high temperatures to remove stains.

Chef  Trousers

Traditionally in blue or black gingham check, these days the check pattern on chef trousers come in an array of colours. The pattern is designed to hide stains and the head chef will normal be distinguished by wearing plain black trousers.  Chef trousers are also known as baggies. Originally designed for men, these days chef trousers come in both male and female styles.

Chef  Hat

Originating from the 13th Century, the Chef hat is also known as “torque blanche”.  Torque means round in Arabic and “torque blanche” means white hat in French. The hat distinguishes ranks within the kitchen. The head chef wears the tallest hat.  Executive chefs can have hats as tall as 12”!!! On a practical note many of today’s hats incorporate a sweat band within the hat.

Chef Apron

The Chef’s Apron is made of thick cotton, aprons are usually white to match the jacket.  The thick cotton protects against the danger of heat in the kitchen. A Tea towel is often hung over the apron ties and used to constantly mop and wipe in the kitchen, this can then be discarded when soiled and a fresh towel put in its place.

Chef Shoes

Most Chef’s wear clogs in the kitchen, they can be slipped off quickly if boiling water is spilt onto the feet but mainly they are there for comfort, as Chef’s, they will be on their feet for most of the shift.  Chefs have worn Clogs for years but they have recently become popular with the public for comfort and come in an array of colours.

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