There’s a difference between experimenting with meat preservation in your home kitchen and serving up nose-to-tail charcuterie to hungry customers in a restaurant. The question is, how do you transition from one to the other? What skills are necessary to make this leap?..
Master your skills.
If you truly want to transition making great charcuterie from a hobby to a career, the first thing you need to do is sharpen your skills. Have you ever dressed or butchered an animal? How are you skills with a knife? Do you know the ins and outs of cooking temperature, bacteria prevention and proper storage? Brush up on your facts and be sure to have at least some real-world application before you take the next step.
Take a culinary class.
We’re not saying you need to go enroll full time at the closest culinary school, but you should definitely take a class. Many technical schools and vocational centers offer culinary classes (often free of charge or at a reduced rate). Take a class, and if there is a variety to choose from, try one that is the closest related to charcuterie (pastry class probably won’t help much). You will hone your craft, learn your way around a professional kitchen and meet new people that can help you succeed moving forward.
Study under a professional.
Learning by doing is almost always the best way to really master a skill. If there is a local charcuterie near you, see if you can spend time with the head chef.
Some things can’t be taught in a classroom! Passion, desire, practice and preparing a charcuterie party for friends will pave the way.