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TamanegiKin
01-12-2013, 09:27 PM
From a broke line cook's perspective I'm curious if you guys give away recipes.
If you contribute to menus and don't expect to work somewhere for long would you give a place the recipes or ask for some form of reimbursement? This is a topic that has always made me uncomfortable so your opinions and experience are highly appreciated. Part of me has really enjoyed seeing my stuff on menus but now I'm beginning to feel that's also bad business on my part to not seek any form of compensation. Maybe I'm trippin' buy that's the reason I thought I'd ask.
Thanks and I look forward to your input.

Von blewitt
01-12-2013, 09:34 PM
I used to feel similarly about recipes/dishes when I was working for others. But I think it's a good way to develop & create new dishes, once you have a full repitoire of recipes that have been tried and tested on paying customers, you will be ready to take a position as head/executive chef, and the financial rewards will follow.

dough
01-13-2013, 12:02 AM
really I think be proud of dishes living on the menu beyond your stay at the restaurant. (or take it with a grain of salt as the restaurant isnt doing anything new and lacks the ability to adapt) also realize almost all menus change over time as customers change over time. understanding and tapping into the pulse of the dinners is the key.

if the owner of the restaurant had any sense he would pay to keep you around making him money. ill tell you this though there are many owners.... the smart ones take care of people that help them make money... there are many reasons most restaurants fail but the owner is a huge part of the problem. owners though also see a turn-style of cooks to be one hit wonders. few have the drive to pour out great ideas and stay on top of it.

honestly I meet too many cooks who have a solid resume cooking for the past 8-15 years... even held a sous chef or chef position. just got burned out. no new ideas. they are like a broken cog. they can cook but dont care to figure out much beyond that. cooking for people means to feed and nourish them... there is a deeper exchange beyond just cook... you dumb it down to well I followed the recipe so your recipe must be the problem and the truth is that cook is as stale as the day they gave up caring.

the best way to get paid for your ideas is to prove your ideas turn a profit.

Dusty
01-13-2013, 01:00 AM
I think that you should. I hate the idea of intellectual property when applied to food.

When you take a job, you're surely learning a whole new slew of techniques and recipes anyway, so you're probably to come out with a net gain.

Cooking is at its best when it is collegiate.

JohnnyChance
01-13-2013, 01:29 AM
I like seeing my stuff on the menu. As a sous, it is part of my job description to create menu items, so part of my salary does compensate me for it. But even when I was a line cook I didn't have a problem with it. Especially the place I am at now, it was tough to get that first item on there.

I prefer to think of it this way: I am constantly getting better at what I do, so even if I give the place I am currently my best idea, it isn't going to be my best item next week, next month, or next year. It is product research on someone else's dime. And I am confident that even if the restaurant hangs onto it long after I am gone and I still want to use that item on my menus, I can execute it better than they can.

mr drinky
01-13-2013, 01:32 AM
I like seeing my stuff on the menu. As a sous, it is part of my job description to create menu items, so part of my salary does compensate me for it. But even when I was a line cook I didn't have a problem with it. Especially the place I am at now, it was tough to get that first item on there.

I prefer to think of it this way: I am constantly getting better at what I do, so even if I give the place I am currently my best idea, it isn't going to be my best item next week, next month, or next year. It is product research on someone else's dime. And I am confident that even if the restaurant hangs onto it long after I am gone and I still want to use that item on my menus, I can execute it better than they can.

That sounds pretty cool. I'd eat at a restaurant with chefs with that attitude.

k.

JohnnyChance
01-13-2013, 01:44 AM
That sounds pretty cool. I'd eat at a restaurant with chefs with that attitude.

k.

Well then you should stop by sometime.

franzb69
01-13-2013, 01:49 AM
the chefs i've worked under are mixed. most wouldn't share a drop of information so i too would withhold information from them if i knew better. half the time i pretend i don't know anything and act "stupid" just so they get their kicks from being "my superior".

but the chefs that share to me, i share to them everything i know. i give them seeds from my garden sometimes even produce coz i like growing heirloom stuff from all over the place (whenever i'm successful, that is). i tend to give more to those that share to me, information or things as thanks.

jgraeff
01-13-2013, 01:50 AM
Of course, a recipe doesn't dictate how the food is sent out or presented to a customer.

I can follow a recipe by Thomas Keller exactly but would it be the same at my restaurant, no, the ambiance plating etc would be different.

To me chefs who are concerned about giving out recipes are insecure.

If you are getting stuff on the menu as a line cook that is great and you should be proud that your making good food I don't think however you should be entitled to profits.

JohnnyChance
01-13-2013, 01:53 AM
I like seeing my stuff on the menu. As a sous, it is part of my job description to create menu items, so part of my salary does compensate me for it. But even when I was a line cook I didn't have a problem with it. Especially the place I am at now, it was tough to get that first item on there.

I prefer to think of it this way: I am constantly getting better at what I do, so even if I give the place I am currently my best idea, it isn't going to be my best item next week, next month, or next year. It is product research on someone else's dime. And I am confident that even if the restaurant hangs onto it long after I am gone and I still want to use that item on my menus, I can execute it better than they can.

Also, I would not want to work at a place that I did not want to contribute to.

TamanegiKin
01-13-2013, 03:47 AM
Thank you all for your responses.
Up until now all I've cared about is that people enjoyed the food that I've put my heart and soul into.
The best feeling is when people really enjoy your food, always puts a smile on my face.
I think johnnychance just made me realize the issue, I don't think I'm somewhere where I want to contribute.
Thank you all for the sage words, I got something from every post.

Chuckles
01-13-2013, 04:01 AM
For me menu items represent a place and time. Dishes that sold at the last job represent that clientele, concept, budget, and staff. Old recipes need more than flavor to be relevant. They have to reflect the entirety of your current situation. Think about the music you listened to five years ago. How much of that music do you play for other people now? Probably a few tracks still resonate but most serve by influencing your current taste. Ideas are cheap. They can get you a job but I think it is consistent execution and development (menu and staff) that create and increase your value to an employer. Recipes alone are not worth half as much as the will to create and inspire quality on every plate. If you can get a dish on the menu you should do it. Then, make sure it stays as good as the plate that got approved or make it better.

scotchef38
01-13-2013, 04:36 AM
I have no problem giving out recipes as the day I am completely ,100% satisfied with a dish is unlikely to ever occur and if someone chooses to use one of my recipes I would be flattered.
I also believe that, with the possible exception of some of the cutting edge molecular dishes,someone,somewhere and at some time will have also "created"the same dish.I am constantly amazed after reading through old cook books how many wild and wacky recipes you can find-hence how do you claim intellectual property when in all likelihood it has been done before.
I also am acutely aware through my job that Chefs are much more likely to become bored and frustrated with their employers when they are not learning and given the opportunity to contribute.Doing 80 hours a week is much less onerous when you feel valued.

Salty dog
01-13-2013, 08:48 AM
How many recipes/ideas/styles are you be exposed to each day? It should go both ways.

Duckfat
01-13-2013, 10:15 AM
In general I would not expect compensation for recipes until you are the Chef or an Executive Chef. Even then there are only certain circumstances where this would apply and it's rarely going to be direct compensation for a recipe. This is something that you want to discuss with your employer as you talk about compensation. If you are required to create recipes, SOP manuals etc this should have an impact on your salary. The most difficult situation where this seems to come up is when a move is made to a position where you are the Chef or you help some one start a business that is using only your recipes or a signature dish. Things take off but the working relationship sours between owner/investor and Chef.
Contributing to a recipe is not something that I've ever seen direct compensation for. If you are performing well and not feeling the love ask for a raise.
Beyond that perform your best and contribute all you can on the way up.
It will pay off in the future.

bieniek
01-13-2013, 03:57 PM
To whoever want to listen.

Without enoough love and understanding noone can make it better then yourself.
And if they can, then they will surely tweak and make it their own.

Someone said once, creativity is not copying.

Zwiefel
01-13-2013, 04:26 PM
To whoever want to listen.

:plus1:

OTOH, that's not how I pay my bills. As someone who has never worked a line, I find this thread really interesting.

Customfan
01-13-2013, 11:29 PM
Like this post... :knife:

I like the way you answered that JohnyC. I think the same way...

You want to work in an environment that fosters growth, cooperation and improvement... If you share, you strive, improve and round and round it goes. A virtuous cycle so to speak.

Thats the way it should work anyway but someone needs to get the ball rolling at some point.

Regards to all

knyfeknerd
01-13-2013, 11:48 PM
Sharing is caring. If the public doesn't eat my food who will? My wife isn't adventurous enough to eat a fraction of the stuff I've come up with.
If you're in this industry for compensation......
......you might want to think of a different career.
Hope this doesn't sound too douchey.

Sarge
01-14-2013, 12:32 AM
I agree chefs and cooks who won't share recipes are insecure. I can tell you that I have never withheld a recipe from someone who asked but I also don't think I've given any away. I also haven't expected monetary compensation for a recipe either.

I look at it as others have said my next batch is better than this one. I feel the exchange of information and education if far more important than what goes into a particular dish. I've been fortunate enough in my career to work with chefs that are open with things like that and always worked in environments that foster growth and development. If you figure out how to make it better home for you I've probably already moved on to new ideas and dishes. Plus as was stated you still probably can't execute it and present it like me.

TamanegiKin
01-16-2013, 03:34 AM
Ok I feel some things need to be cleared up here.
First off, my question stemmed from something feeling off with my current job and my role.
I've always contributed at every place I've been because I love what I do.
I always took it as a challenge to prove to my chefs that I can do whatever they throw at me and also do my part to create or improve.
I don't understand the "insecure" suggestions.
My confusion on whether or not I wanna leave behind a detailed how to once I'm gone has nothing to do with insecurity.
Why would I feel that way about items that have become signature menu items?
I just don't feel too fondly about the owner.
If creating is so easy (which it is) then why don't all cooks do so?
Cooks who don't create are insecure.
I did a dessert menu awhile back because my chefs didn't "like" pastries. I was a prep cook at the time and I ended up with my name in a magazine and a dessert menu that people really enjoyed. I did it because it's FUN! Because I love my work and it's how I get better. Finally, I'm not seeking compensation directly for a recipe. I'm just in a place now where I am trying to look out for my best interest.
If you think that some owners don't try to exploit those who do this just for the "love" of the game then that's naive.
I'm glad I brought this up, as I said earlier I don't think I'm at a place where I want to help and I will fix that real soon.
I've never experienced this before and I appreciate the responses.
One last thing, I do this because I enjoy it, because I belong in the kitchen, it's all I've got and I hit it hard every day because I know it's all I've got. This is my life, there's no reason I shouldn't seek a suitable wage for it.
Thanks for helping out fam, all your replies are much appreciated.

labor of love
01-16-2013, 03:53 AM
ive had jobs where i helped in recipes/specials, menu development and ive also had jobs where i didnt want to. theres nothing wrong with whatever decision you come to. follow your gut instincts.

quantumcloud509
01-16-2013, 03:59 AM
Its so tough to share sometimes :) I only share with people I trust anymore. Not the owner or the sous chef, but the chef yeah. He at leats gves me credit for my input unlike the other two. Geez. Thats all you really want though, is credit right? :) The only place I banked off of recipes is when I was chef at Market Grill inside of pikes place...that was nice. Free money. Yeah.

bieniek
01-16-2013, 07:18 AM
Ok I feel some things need to be cleared up here.
First off, my question stemmed from something feeling off with my current job and my role.
I've always contributed at every place I've been because I love what I do.
I always took it as a challenge to prove to my chefs that I can do whatever they throw at me and also do my part to create or improve.
I don't understand the "insecure" suggestions.
My confusion on whether or not I wanna leave behind a detailed how to once I'm gone has nothing to do with insecurity.
Why would I feel that way about items that have become signature menu items?
I just don't feel too fondly about the owner.
If creating is so easy (which it is) then why don't all cooks do so?
Cooks who don't create are insecure.
I did a dessert menu awhile back because my chefs didn't "like" pastries. I was a prep cook at the time and I ended up with my name in a magazine and a dessert menu that people really enjoyed. I did it because it's FUN! Because I love my work and it's how I get better. Finally, I'm not seeking compensation directly for a recipe. I'm just in a place now where I am trying to look out for my best interest.
If you think that some owners don't try to exploit those who do this just for the "love" of the game then that's naive.
I'm glad I brought this up, as I said earlier I don't think I'm at a place where I want to help and I will fix that real soon.
I've never experienced this before and I appreciate the responses.
One last thing, I do this because I enjoy it, because I belong in the kitchen, it's all I've got and I hit it hard every day because I know it's all I've got. This is my life, there's no reason I shouldn't seek a suitable wage for it.
Thanks for helping out fam, all your replies are much appreciated.

You basically answered yourself.
Think about it this way: even if you dont like the place or whatever about it that you dont want to contribute, do it for your own sake.
You push yourself and its going to be you who benefits.
Ideas are coming from inspiration, inspiration might come from that dirty bastard you work with and hate ;) It is all over. I think every place can give you something back.

For example, I worked in one shitehole once, needed money when baby was on her way.
So there are burgers on the menu. They serve frozen stuff, of course.
Even though it comes ready shaped they managed somehow to run out.
One day we had leftover ribeye joint, so I minced it, blended meat mixture and shaped some burgers.
Next day Im coming, and theres my burgers for staff meal and the frozen shite in the fridge.

I was so sick of that frozen pile of crap, that I wanted it out the menu. The next menu I supposed to make. So I did.
First day we served the menu comes one idiott waiter and cries that a customer came all the way from Canada and is unsatisfied that this shitehole have no longer freaking frozen dry shite on the menu.

You can see the pics of the items in my picture thread, this was winter bar menu, sous chef [which happened to be an idiott with 7 months experience from restaurant joint] said about it "The flavours are there but theres no colour"
I will never forget that.
I left but the menu and recipes are there. Noone can make it anyway.

Oh yeah for the warm rice pudding with cherries and cherry-kirsch sorbet the ice cream machine got broken but nobody cared for 5 months, even though me moaning.

mpukas
01-16-2013, 05:06 PM
I donít work in a pro kitchen, so my perspective is a bit different.

It's not about the recipe, it's about the technique and execution. People ask me all of the time for my "recipes" (which I rarely use), so I'll write down what I put in a dish, they'll try to make it and they'll say it was terrible. Again, these are mostly non-pro folks that usually need a detailed recipe to boil water.

May be the kitchen and restaurant world is different, but in the design world, your ideas are not yours - they are the of the firm you work for. You get paid to create for the name on the door, not yourself. A friend from college who is a rock star designer worked for a very high end firm in NYC after we graduated, and every day his drawings were taken from him and locked in a safe for the night. May not be relevant, but that's the level ideas and protection can go to.

It's much harder to keep secrets in the food world today, where just about everything that anyone is doing at the moment is at your virtual finger tips. It's common place for a young chef to work for a well know joint famous for something for a short time, take what he can learn, and then move on to something else.

My thought for OP is if youíre writing recipes, dishes, menus for your joint and you feel you deserve something for it that youíre not getting, you either should be in a conversation about a higher position, or be looking to relocate.

steeley
01-17-2013, 12:09 AM
I always give out recipes freely never really thought about it any other way .
i am always revising and looking for new or different not so much recipes but maybe a idea forms in dishes or technique that i use and the recipe or dish i give away today will not be what i am doing next week .
always changing and learning . but good technique and method will always stays.

Chuckles
01-17-2013, 12:10 AM
My wife had to sign a contract stating that every recipe she makes becomes the property of her company. She has had dishes that didn't make it on the menu at her restaurant appear on menus at other restaurants in the company. FWIW There are a few recipes she developed at previous jobs that she won't even run on specials because she doesn't want to lose control of them.

steeley
01-17-2013, 12:18 AM
And i told him no ketchup but he insist
http://i.imgur.com/6Yh7gl.jpg
There is no talking to him , seriously there is no talking to him . he's a dog.

convis
01-17-2013, 04:23 PM
I think it depends on the recipe, and the work place. Most restaurants i have worked at have been independent or small ownership type places, varying greatly in style and quality of food. In all these places i loved to contribute, i took just as much or more away from these places than i put in. In these environments exchange of information was rewarding, and taught me alot. Learning how to conceptualize a dish for service(i.e. making it executable in the kitchens environment, level of skill of the staff ect.)was great practice. The restaurant may have my recipe but i learned from its use.
However i remember my first job in a more corporate place that took direct ownership of recipes for multiple restaurants, even with financial compensation, it seemed like a bad deal. you rarely saw your recipe appear on the menu, and if it was, it was always changed. It was not a learning experience.
That said there are certain recipes,(sausage seasoning ratios come to mind)that i don't like to give up quite as readily.

shaneg
01-18-2013, 07:06 AM
Ive always had an idea for my own place to put my name on the front of the menu i.e "The Chinese Laundry, by Shane G" for instance but my name in smaller print, and then each chef gets one thing on the menu, obviously tuned a little, which is a good way to teach others how to construct and cost a dish which complements the menu, and the get a "by john hancock" beside the dish..

Drumjockey
01-21-2013, 03:09 AM
If I know I'm not going to be in a kitchen very long, it's usually because either I don't like some aspect of the people I work with, the food I'm cooking, or both. In this situation I would NOT give out any recipes (running a special is different). Or I would give the recipe minus one or two key ingredients (pretty childish so I usually reserve this treatment for those who have pissed me off or disrespected me in some way-- thankfully this hasn't been necessary for quite some time:). On the other hand, if I am working somewhere I am planning to be for a while, for people I respect and who respect me, I feel a lot differrently about it; sometimes I'll give a recipe to one of my guys just to avoid going in on my day off! Also, I find that posting a 'build guide' for both front and back of house staff helps not only with consistency of plating and preparation, but also with how many servers sell. If the FOH know exactly what is in it, they can tell customers more about a dish, and sell it more effectively. This also greatly reduces the chances of selling a reactive dish to someone with a food allergy: a server with a gluten allergy at their table has only to refer to the build guide to know whether or not the customer can safely eat the dish. I even post a pic of the dish with the guide (usually more helpful for my cooks than the FOH, but does help to ensure that all plates are looking EXACTLY how I want them, whether I'm there or not). Hope that helps...

slowtyper
01-22-2013, 10:29 PM
I can't even imagine any cooks asking for compensation for a recipe they developed...i mean it sounds ridiculous
Its part of your job..your pay is compensation, thats my opinion.

Now imagine if this was completely normal....you said its bad business on your part. I disagree. You want to move on to another restaurant, something better. I don't now anything about LA but I'm guessing the restaurant circle is fairly tight, with a lot of rumours. It probably wouldn't be good business on your part for that reason. I mean if you were hiring someone, even just a line cook, you'd want someone that gives it their all, no matter what their job, not just to come and pick up a paycheque.

Vertigo
01-22-2013, 10:51 PM
I used to share recipes. Then a recipe I contributed got butchered, hit with the Hammer O' Costing, the final product was a disgusting shadow of its former self, and it still had my name on it. And I was like

http://www.souppilgrim.com/orglif/hellno.jpg

And that was the last time I gave up a recipe. Now if someone asks me how to make a particular soup or special, I give 'em a rough verbal outline and let them figure out the rest on their own.

hambone.johnson
01-23-2013, 01:23 AM
Its all evolution. If you just keep it all bottled up inside and dont experiment then you cant grow either. You are kind of looking at it from an insecure or negative POV, and its probably because you dont like the place/owners. i think the deffinition is important too. if we are talking about a RECIPE, something with all ingredients put down with measurements and what not then thats one thing. if we are talking about complete CONCEPT kind of thing, where it might only be created once or twice because its a weekend special thats another. They both come with their own risks.

you also need to consider that any time you create and serve anything your almost MORE vulnerable from the outside than the inside. you create, you standardize and then what ? 10 people have the recipe? the owners, EC, SousChef, line cooks ECT. you SERVE that dish and then what. every customer that eats it gets a shot. if its really good and you get known for it the number of people who eat it goes up from there. if im a chef and i hear through the grapevine its good, ill shoot by for the dish and get a bite. then i have the concept, i dont need your recipe. ill make it my own if i like the flavor combos.

so the thing is, if you wanna clamp down, then dont share. if u wanna relax and hang out. then dont care. :-)

hambone.johnson
01-23-2013, 03:03 AM
Hey ! i dont mean to double post but i wonder if you have done everything you can to get outside your "box" ... have you watched any social culinary media? something my kitchen has really promoted is the "have you seen" or "have you read" and its motivating. we look at the local and the city and then we look elsewhere to wat everyone else is doing. start watching Netflix and then start YouTubing the major guys. people who you think is cool. maybee its not Grant @ Next or Alinea, it might be someone else. if you Netflix i recomend

"its a matter of taste" - its a real life thing.
"el bulli"
if you search these, they will bring up others. work the social media. there is a ton of stuff. people document major menus on their Iphones now a days. if you dont appreciate that to get out side your day to day, and use that as motivaiton, your out of touch. Look at what others are doing and see things. reach to Tokyo and Spain and just see whats going on.

slowtyper
01-23-2013, 03:10 AM
Ive always had an idea for my own place to put my name on the front of the menu i.e "The Chinese Laundry, by Shane G" for instance but my name in smaller print, and then each chef gets one thing on the menu, obviously tuned a little, which is a good way to teach others how to construct and cost a dish which complements the menu, and the get a "by john hancock" beside the dish..

One restaurant I like does this. For ex "Sarah's Burger" or "Kevin's XXXXX". I like that a lot. Going a step further, I was looking at my girlfriends soap she just bought from a store called LUSH. It has a little sticker on it with a picture of the person who made that bar. Now i want little stickers of my face to put on plates I send out. haha

bieniek
01-23-2013, 04:27 AM
"its a matter of taste" - its a real life thing.
"el bulli"
if you search these, they will bring up others. work the social media. there is a ton of stuff. people document major menus on their Iphones now a days. if you dont appreciate that to get out side your day to day, and use that as motivaiton, your out of touch. Look at what others are doing and see things. reach to Tokyo and Spain and just see whats going on.

I dont quite understand that part.
I agree on the general impression and inspiration. But that to me means I see a soup on someones menu and its a sauce for me. Or a gel. It doesnt need t be any igredient really.
But what the hell do i need el bulli [or anything similar] for if they
A) operate l'art pour l'art establishment and are generating losses.
B) the menu is based on local grown produce of exceptional quality. I know everybody talks now about first class ingredients but how many really gets all top notch? Not me for sure
C) Why to get suggested by anyone? I dont like to watch cooking shows actually, apart from KN, I well rather read/check out cook books without photos. That really gets your imagination going.

All I mean, your style have a start in your head.

hambone.johnson
01-23-2013, 01:09 PM
I dont quite understand that part.
I agree on the general impression and inspiration. But that to me means I see a soup on someones menu and its a sauce for me. Or a gel. It doesnt need t be any igredient really.
But what the hell do i need el bulli [or anything similar] for if they
A) operate l'art pour l'art establishment and are generating losses.
B) the menu is based on local grown produce of exceptional quality. I know everybody talks now about first class ingredients but how many really gets all top notch? Not me for sure
C) Why to get suggested by anyone? I dont like to watch cooking shows actually, apart from KN, I well rather read/check out cook books without photos. That really gets your imagination going.

All I mean, your style have a start in your head.

i was just trying to give another way for people to get motivated by stuff. I feel like the thread starter is struggling with his current location and sometimes looking elsewhere, taking your focus away from your current situation and can help.

Also, these arent cooking shows, as you might see on food network or what not. these are Documentaries, usually 90-120 minutes long, about chefs and their situations. "its a matter of taste" is about a NY chefs progress and process of several years to open his own 2 star restaurant. the El bulli movie shows the creative process they go through to create the menu every year. they are relatives of the "Jiro dreams of Sushii" movies. if you like books and that works for you then good. I was trying to point the thread starter in another direction. Sharing and showing what other are doing is important, and i wanted him to see that.

TamanegiKin
01-23-2013, 08:19 PM
It's all good, I'm looking for a new spot where I can cook, contribute and most importantly continue to learn.
That being said I'm present in the moment and focused on leaving a better place than the one I came into.
I intend on personally finding my replacement and bringing he or she up to speed on all things new and old.
There are some details that I don't care to share and I think some replies were a bit off base because of it.
Either way I'm better prepared now moving forward and this'll be the last time I address this thread as I feel it's counterproductive to moving on with it. Thanks again and next time I post in back of the house forum It'll be about something better.
Peace

DWells
01-24-2013, 08:20 PM
I enjoyed the thread. It's a good topic, entirely subjective, and varies from situation to situation as to what the "right" thing to do is.

I think the big take-home here is that you should try to grow constantly, and put yourself in a position where that is possible.

Marko Tsourkan
01-24-2013, 08:42 PM
There is a striking similarity of a food preparation and a knife making process. You have ingredients, maker's technique, cooking (heat treating) temperatures, cook (soak) time, food presentation (look of a knife), etc.

It took me 3 years to fine-tune the process (I got a lot of help form Devin and folks on this forum with ideas and feedback). People write to me and ask if they can apprentice or offer to pay for teaching them how to make knives. There are certain things I would show, but things that took me a long time to arrive at, but I could teach in one day, NO. I turn down most of the requests, partially because for a lack of time. If I see that the person is putting an effort, I would at least point him in a right direction, but I do think, trial and error tests your resolution, is an important component of learning a new skill or craft.

Lucretia
01-25-2013, 12:04 PM
What amazes me is how the rules are different for different industries. If you're a scientist or engineer & invent something wonderful, the company you're working for will probably own it. And by the way, if you leave the company, you can't take the invention with you or develop anything like it elsewhere. What really slays me is the music industry. Record yourself singing some Beatles tunes and play it in your restaurant or sell it on iTunes, and you'll probably owe the estate of Michael Jackson some money--even if you're Paul McCartney. (I think MJ's estate is still part owner of the rights to the Beatles music.)

Zwiefel
01-25-2013, 12:10 PM
Yeah, for some reason recipes aren't considered Intellectual Property.

Crothcipt
01-25-2013, 07:55 PM
I used to share recipes. Then a recipe I contributed got butchered, hit with the Hammer O' Costing, the final product was a disgusting shadow of its former self, and it still had my name on it. And I was like

http://www.souppilgrim.com/orglif/hellno.jpg

And that was the last time I gave up a recipe. Now if someone asks me how to make a particular soup or special, I give 'em a rough verbal outline and let them figure out the rest on their own.

+100

If asked about a recipe I will make one up with what is around the kitchen, and not go with something not coming on the truck. If asked to open it up I will also ask how much $$ per dish, and if any changes then it's not mine.

HotDog
01-28-2013, 09:35 PM
Recipes are currency. I really feel that trading recipes is a healthy part of the professional kitchen. Going from one restaurant to another is great. I have taken recipes from people that I hold onto to this day. It's interesting to see how other people interpret food and technique. Also, I like the idea that someone will have my recipe and use it for a family meal or special. It's like leaving you mark on a restaurant.

jbl
01-29-2013, 05:07 AM
I think that, since there is nothing new under the sun, withholding recipes or expecting credit for them is unrealistic.

I used to work in a tres authentique French bistro, and as sous, ran everything apart from pass. We had just started and couldn't afford super quality chocolate for out petit pots au chocolat, so I used to add a sprig of rosemary to the mix as it was cooking, to add a spicy complexity missing in our basic chocolate.

I thought I'd really done something, y'know, and then was flicking through Jane Grigson, English Food, and there's an 1894 recipe for chocolate and rosemary...

Everything I know has been formed by some incoming information; from old mentors, articles, books, shows... Yes, I never copy a dish, but in a sense every component of every dish I've 'created' was collected magpie style.