I am currently a student at The NYC College Of Technology. I’m working on my bachelors degree in hospitality management. Becoming a chef and restaurant owner has been my dream since I was a child. I love being creative and I truly believe that my career path will allow me to always be myself. I’m definitely looking forward to my progress and development of my professional skills.
It was a busy day of middle school. I remembered Mrs. Frias my 6th grade teacher telling me to keep quiet and continue writing the essay she had assigned. I could feel my hands cramping as I dreamed for the day to end. Suddenly Sister Patrice the freckled face principal of Immaculate Conception School rushed into the classroom and demanded to speak to me. I could feel my palms sweating with fear but little did I know, that this moment in my life would help me build my future. She had asked me to participate in the school’s first annual “Student Career Day.” I had to think deeply about my career goals and present a speech to my fellow peers. This was an effortless task for me because I had always envisioned myself as a chef and restaurant owner. I was this arrogant 12 year old girl who walked around thinking she knew everything there was to know about the culinary world. I didn’t need anyone’s help in the kitchen. I believed that my skills allowed me to be placed on a pedestal like a courageous statue at a museum.
After having my speech reviewed and verified by Sister Patrice, I came up with the brilliant idea to make some samples of my favorite brownie cookies shaped as hearts. I thought it would help people to see how talented I was. The day before my presentation I researched a variety of recipes and choose the most complicated one. I sifted the flour and cocoa powder into a large bowl and added all of the wet ingredients one by one. I took my hot pink rubber spatula into my hand and began to incorporate the batter together. I took two large handful of semi-sweet chocolate chips and sprinkled them over the batter like a drizzle of rain in the spring. The cookie dough was thick and creamy. I knew they would be perfect for tomorrow’s “Student Career Day.” I left the batter to rest in the refrigerator as I prepped what I believed was a baking pan and set the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. My “culinary expertise” came into play as I began to scoop small amounts of the dough onto what I now know is a cooling rack and placed it inside of the oven. I knew my cookies would be decadent so I sat back and relaxed as the cookies were baking.
I was laying on the couch waiting for the timer to go off, and suddenly I heard a low sizzling sound. I thought nothing of it and excuse the sound as a signal that my cookies would be soft to the touch with gooey chocolate on the inside. The buzzing sound of the timer went off, as I walked to the kitchen I watched smoke ripple out of my oven like a steam engine. My kitchen was full of the foul smell of burning bitter chocolate. The cookie dough seeped through the cooling rack and onto the bottom of my oven like boiling cement. I thought to myself how could this be? I am an expert in culinary arts, what did I do wrong ? I used my large mittens to take out the scorching hot rack and realized that I was defeated by my own pride.
My plan to bake homemade cookies for my presentation was completely destroyed and I refused to disappoint myself. Food plagiarism became my way out of this predicament. I rushed to my room and opened the bottom lid to my “power puff girls” piggy bank. I pulled out five dollars and instantly ran down to the supermarket on the corner of my street. I searched frantically through the dessert aisle for a box of cookie that appeared to be homemade. I finally found “Pepperidge Farm Soft Baked Brownie Cookies” the savior to all my troubles. When I got back upstairs I prepped the presentation box and placed each store brought cookie neatly into it. I was determined to execute my speech and presentation correctly at the “Student Career Day.”
I was sitting in the school auditorium as people began to fill up the seats. I had practiced my speech several times in the mirror before today, this made me feel confident that I would be great. After Sister Patrice welcomed everyone in the audience and explained the purpose of today’s special event I was called to the stage. I stood up and adjusted my chef’s hat and coat as I walked towards the stage. When I got there I felt my stomach knotting itself like a pretzel and my lips beginning to tighten up restricting me from speaking. My eyes raced through the audience as I desperately searched for my mother in the crowd and when I did find her, I felt a sense of release on my body and was able to speak. Although I did stutter slightly my speech went perfect. I remembered hearing the audience’s applause as I said my closing remarks and presented my delicious samples. My fellow classmates helped distribute the beautifully brown colored cookies as I walked off the stage with pride.
I could hear everyone’s mouths smacking together while they ate my cookies. I sat back into my seat next to Mrs. Frias, she turned to me and said “You did wonderful up there on stage I could truly understand your passion for cooking and becoming a chef.” Mrs. Frias patted my shoulder and smirked. She said “I have some advice for you, the next you want to bring in samples make sure they’re not from the supermarket, I get these brownie cookies for my children all of the time.” My heart exploded like a bomb in my chest and the hairs on the back of my neck stood straight up. My face covered itself with humiliation as I realized that there was nothing I could say to get myself out of this one. I truly believed that my life was over but instead it was the epiphany I needed in order to succeed. I have learned to embrace my mistakes and pursue my dreams by taking the most effective steps to learning all that I can about culinary arts. I am no longer afraid to develop my craft through my errors. I now take credit for every burnt pot in my kitchen with honor.