5 Tips for Chefs and Cooks Amidst the COVID-19 Pandemic
There’s no way around it—the year 2020 has not been kind to any of us. What everyone thought would be the start of a prosperous new decade was instead plagued with natural disasters, international conflict, and—how could anyone forget—an actual plague. The COVID-19 pandemic rages on, leaving the entire world suffering biologically, socially, and economically. And arguably no field of work has been more affected by the coronavirus than the service industry, including restaurants and other food establishments.
Undoubtedly, this has been a tough year for us chefs and cooks, but there isn’t really much we could do about the current situation except to stay home, observe safety measures, and hope for the day that this pandemic will end. In the meantime, however, here are a few tips on how you can stay productive and inspired amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
How to Keep Your Culinary Spirits Up During the COVID-19 Pandemic
1. Get Creative in the Kitchen
As much as we’d want to go on a fancy dinner date with a special someone, catch up with some friends over lunch, or even just enjoy a nice little snack by ourselves at the deli, none of those are sensible options at the moment. All of us are stuck inside our houses, where we rightfully should be during the current situation. But who says you can’t have a five-star meal at home?
A great way to keep your culinary skills sharp is by getting creative with ingredients that you already have at home. Try cooking a meal you’ve never done before, or prepare a familiar dish in a new way. Even celebrity chefs are giving free cooking tips at home, so why not give it a go?
2. Cooking Time is Family Time
An awesome way to motivate yourself to cook during this pandemic is to involve your loved ones, the reasons being:
- a) You get to bond with your family not just over eating food, but also over cooking food, and;
- b) You get an extra pair of hands, thus slashing food prep time drastically and making your life easier.
We see this as an absolute win!
3. Feed the Hungry, Feed the Soul
“Without empathy, nothing works” as Chef José Andrés stated in an interview with Time Magazine. And much like Chef Andrés, you too can make a difference. Food banks such as Feed the Children, Meals on Wheels, No Kid Hungry, and Chef Andrés’s own World Central Kitchen need donations now more than ever, and no amount is too little. Apart from that, if you please, you can also prepare a nice meal for the folks in your area (provided that safety guidelines are followed).
It doesn’t have to be grand. It just needs to be sincere.
4. Brush Up On Those Skills
Most of us—now that we’ve been relegated to stay at home—have more free time than we’d know what to do with, so what’s a better use for it than to enhance your skillset? Online learning communities such as Skillshare, Udemy, and a number of other sites provide countless online cooking courses that will help you develop your abilities at the comfort of your own home.
The best part? It saves you the hassle of carrying your kitchen tools around—not that Chef Sac Knife Bag owners would know what that feels like.
5. Don’t Be Too Hard On Yourself
No matter where your passions lie, one of the most important pieces of advice ever is to not be too hard on yourself, especially at a time like this. Remind yourself that it’s okay to step away and take some time off, to rest and replenish your energy after an exhausting day. Remember that it is all part of the journey toward the better days to come.