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"Cooking is the greatest art in the world, even greater than a painting because that art only attracts eyes. But what cooks create, attracts the eyes, the nose and the tongue. And that is why cooks are the greatest artists of the world." – Amitabh Bachchan(actor) in a bollywood movie Cheeni Kum.
In Ahmedabad, it is a trend to go out for dinners at every weekend to give the lady of the house holiday for a day to cook. And usually every Saturday, the question arises which restaurant should they go? Obviously they choose to go to a restaurant where they like the food, more than just an ambience. But if you ask them have they ever complimented the cook who cooks there and makes their weekend a good one? The answer would be NO. Have they ever even thought of the cook after having a good dinner?
Everybody needs appreciation. So why not cooks? Why is it so that it is easy to complain than appreciate? If out of ten times, one time the food is not good, will the customer complain or not? But did he ever say that when the food was good?
Cooks are on their feet for long periods and often work evening, weekends and holidays. Their work environment is usually determined by the kind of establishment that employs them. The larger restaurants and expensive hotels tend to have modern equipment, convenient work areas and air conditioning. Older, smaller eating establishments may not provide the same level of comfort in the work settings for their kitchen staff.
Cooks need to be able to function in close quarters during busy periods, lift heavy objects and work near hot ovens and grills. While the kitchen staff of hotels and restaurants can expect evening and weekend shifts, cafeteria cooks in schools, factories and other institutions are more likely to have conventional work schedules. Seasonal work is often required for those working as a cook in a school or in a resort.
Through a series of my pictures, I want to bring in notice the working conditions of cooks from restaurants of different strata through portraits. And a small conversation with them.