Find out the culinary skills you’ll learn in commercial cookery

learn commercial cookery

The hospitality industry is incredibly broad and varied, with Australia’s “hospo” scene filled with all sorts of different cuisines from around the world.

Finding your first job can be daunting, especially with all the different cuisines on offer.

Luckily for you, while the food is different, 90% of the time, the techniques used to make them are the same across cuisines and restaurants.

Complete one of our commercial cookery courses in Brisbane, and you’ll have everything you need to succeed in a kitchen, no matter the cuisine!

Is cooking a skill or a talent?

Most people say that cooking is a talent – you have to be a naturally-born baker or chef.

We disagree. While there are some with a natural aptitude for it, as far as cooking skills are concerned, it’s something that most people can pick up with enough training, effort and focus.

No matter what you’re cooking, it all starts with the basic principles of cooking and food preparation, learned in the kitchen or inside the classroom. 

To be the best cook, you need to practice your craft and have a solid grip of the basics – get that in order, and you’ll be set to work with a wide number of different cuisines and in all sorts of different kitchens…

How can I improve my culinary skills?

You may watch cooking shows, YouTube tutorials and even follow all your favourites on social media.

But is watching famous chefs enough?

While there’s nothing wrong with having a keen interest in the craft, the best way to improve your culinary skills is by doing it yourself.

In short: practice, practice, practice!

As an industry that’s inherently hands-on, this is the best way to build up your basic skills and improve your cooking skills.

If you plan on cooking professionally however, you’re going to have to take your culinary skills to the next level by enrolling in the Certificate III or IV in Commercial Cookery.

What are the basic culinary skills you need to know? And is a culinary degree worth it?

When you enrol in a commercial cookery course in Brisbane, you’ll have the opportunity to equip yourself with all the basic culinary skills that will be crucial for your hospitality career.

Such cooking skills are essential if you want to advance to the more complex skills needed for you to succeed. What’s more, they’re universal – no matter where you find yourself working or what food you make, you’ll find yourself using these skills.

Enrolling with Academia opens up countless employment opportunities for a commercial cook anywhere in Australia.

But what are these basic culinary skills anyway?

Basic skill #1: Knife skills

Anybody can use a knife – but what about:

  • Using a knife safely?
  • Proper grip?
  • Using different knives for different purposes?
  • Advanced cutting techniques?

Since it is one of the basic skills that you can ever have in the kitchen, you will need to have a strong foundation.

Basic skill #2: Herb and spices preparation

It might not be the first thing that comes to mind when it comes to essential culinary skills.

Make no mistake however, the ability to add the right combination of herbs and spices when marinating and serving food is essential in ensuring that everything you make tastes fantastic!

Learning the magic behind all the types of herbs and spices found in the kitchen takes a trained eye – or in this case, mouth! These flavour enhancers will open up a whole new world of cuisine.

Basic skill #3: Making the perfect stock

Stews, soups, broths and other stock-based foods depend on having good stock to form the base.

Ordinary, store-bought stock simply won’t do – if you want something done right, you need to be able to do it yourself.

Stock making will always be part of food preparation – that’s why you also need to master the skill of knowing the right ingredients, a cup of water, and spices to add to create the perfect stock.

Basic skill #4: Mastery of the five sauces

There are thousands of different types of sauces out there – you’ll probably encounter many of them over your career.

That said, there are a handful that you’ll run into time and time again!

From learning the traditional to modern sauces, this basic skill can be a big help in your journey to become the best chef.

We suggest familiarising yourself with some of the most common ones, such as:

  • Béchamel
  • Velouté
  • Espagnole
  • Hollandaise
  • Tomato

Learn these, and you’ll have most types of cuisine covered!

What are the 5 skills taught in culinary school (other than cooking skills, of course)?

While most of your time studying commercial cookery will be spent learning how to cook, that isn’t all your commercial cookery course will cover.

While you can pick up cooking skills on your own, there are certain things that watching YouTube recipe guides won’t teach you…

Time management skills

Working inside the kitchen comes with its demands. You’ll be pressed for time, especially when you have a full house all ordering at once.

Time management is crucial – luckily for you, culinary schools go beyond technical training and will help you learn how to manage your time and organise affairs in the kitchen.

Culinary schools will provide you with techniques to effectively manage your time around the kitchen and organise tasks, saving yourself (and your team) from being overwhelmed and overworked. 

Health and nutrition

Anything you make should be delicious – and just as importantly, it should be safe to eat!

Health and nutrition is a large part of your commercial cookery course. Formal cooking classes will help you know what healthy ingredients to include in recipes and have a deeper understanding of the food sources and food nutrients whenever you cook.

In addition, they’ll also teach you about proper food hygiene and handling techniques, ensuring that everything you cook is safe to eat.

Finance and accounting

It isn’t just kitchen skills you’ll need – depending on what role you find yourself in, you’ll also need to know about:

  • Inventory
  • Budgeting
  • Finances

Money and accounting are part of managing any restaurant. It’s because of this that many of our commercial cookery courses offer you an introduction to cash-flow management, budgeting, costing and inventory.

Communication skills

Communication: one of the most valuable skills you’ll need to succeed in the kitchen (as well as one particular skill that gets focused on a lot during culinary school!)

And we aren’t just talking about communicating changes in schedules or shifts – the kitchen is a hectic place, so good communication is key to avoiding accidents and other issues.

Say you work in a kitchen with a large team – you’ll need to coordinate your work and ensure everyone knows the role they need to play, orders are going out on time, and no one is being forgotten.

Leadership skills

And finally, one of the tried and tested skills you will learn in culinary school is leadership. 

Even if you start at the entry-level – but have goals of becoming head chef – you’ll need these essential skills.

Even if you aren’t gunning for a management position, you’ll still find yourself working alongside a full kitchen team, often with many working underneath you.

Good leadership skills are the key to coordinating all of this and ensuring that things get done.

Enrol in a commercial cookery course with Academia today!

Certificate in Commercial Cookery III (SIT30816) 

Start towards your dream of working as a chef by enrolling in a Cert 3 in Commercial Cookery. This course is specifically designed for those who want to work on their skills and knowledge in the bustling commercial kitchen environment.

Academia offers placements for students, placing you with one of our many workplace partners. Here, you’ll get to put your training to the test and prepare yourself for the things you’ll see in the industry.

Certificate in Commercial Cookery IV (SIT40516)

Aiming to build your restaurant or work as a chef de partie? Looking to climb the ladder?

If so, you’re going to need extra skills – skills like management, finance, and marketing that you’ll need to lead the team and take on a management or senior role in the kitchen.

The Certificate IV in Commercial Cookery will last for six months and will be your ticket to further study with the Diploma of Hospitality Management.

Study Commercial Cookery in Brisbane with Academia!

Start a career in commercial cookery by enrolling in our commercial cookery course in Brisbane or Melbourne.

Want more info? Contact our friendly course advisors using one of the methods below: