Mashed potatoes for a chef


I woke up early that morning to review my production timeline — I had read it a dozen times by then. I got to the classroom early to sharpen my knives while I eyed my chef’s office door, waiting for him to post the testing order for the make-or-break midterms.

When he finally taped the spreadsheet to his office window, all 16 of us clambered around to see who would get the fire order first, and my name was dead last.

Our midterm test was a simple meal: chicken breast, mashed potatoes, green beans and pan sauce. Everyone was required to use the same cooking methods and ingredients. The

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