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9 Tips for How to Be Your Own Sous Chef

cut up veggies

Getting ready for holidays doesn't have to be stressful. Follow my 9 tips for preparing and planning ahead and you will be cool as a cucumber.

Starting with Rosh Hashanah and prepping for a months’ worth of holiday meals for the masses can be  mentally and emotionally overwhelming even before you step foot  into the kitchen.  I find the best way I can help myself is to be my own sous chef.

In the culinary world the sous chef serves just below the executive or head chef and has a vital role in making sure the kitchen runs smoothly.  The sous chef does lots of the grunt work, prep work and actual cooking and while never receives the same glory (or pay) as the chef de cuisine, is essential to the success of the food that emerges from the kitchen.

In a perfect world we would hire ourselves a sous chef (or an executive chef while we’re dreaming!) for the holiday season.  In an almost perfect world our husband and/or oldest kid (presumably someone who can drive, wield a knife and handle the heat of the kitchen) would volunteer their services.  But in the real world you can actually be your own sous chef.

You know when you watch a cooking show and you see everything precut, pre measured and laid out prettier than a holiday table? All the ingredients in little bowls, everything in its place, all set up and ready to go.  The official terms for that is mise en place a French phrase which literally means “putting in place” meaning, set up.  It really makes life so easy for the cook, I know because I have been on set with everything in its place.  When I was on the TODAY Show I made Chicken Soup, Matzah Balls and Brisket in 5 minutes (thanks to the 3-Woman team who laid out the mise en place!).

In my own kitchen, year round, but especially this time of year I put on my sous chef hat and do a version of mise en place all of which keep me from going cuckoo for cocoa puffs.

You too can be a sane and happy cook this holiday if you follow these 9 simple tips.

9 Holiday Prep Tips To Keep You Sane