The History of the Famous Chef’s Hat in Cooking

Have you seen a chef and questioned yourself why chefs wear such figurative hats? In fact, at Restaurants’ kitchen, you are likely to see almost the entire kitchen staff wearing different head wearables. Other than their use, these wearables say a lot about who the people are, their style, their level of expertise and so much more. Generally, chefs wear a special tall white hat known as Toque Blanc. Other than having an attention-catching look, this hat provides the utmost prestige and distinction to the overall appearance of a chef.  Putting-on a chef’s hat is what every culinary aspirant dreams of.  And what makes these hats more fascinating is the rich and interesting tales behind them.chef's hat

The chef’s uniform was introduced and developed by French chefs Marie Antoine Careme and Auguste Escoffier in the early 1900s.  But long before the emergence of the chef’s uniform, cooks already wear hats when they work in the kitchen.  There are, in fact, a lot of incidents accounting the origin of chef’s hat that go way back 7th century.  During that time period, chefs seemed to be regularly poisoning kings who scorned them. Therefore, to make up for any mistreatment they were feeling as well as in order to increase their prestige, chefs were provided special head wearables known as chef’s hat.

Another tale from Henry the VIII’s era claimed that when king Henry found a strand of hair in his soup, he beheaded the chef who prepared the soup. And his replacement was asked to wear a hat while cooking so as to avoid further such incidents.  Thus, they began the use of hats to maintain hygiene.

In the 1800s, chefs donned stocking caps. These caps were worn in different colors according to the ranks. These caps were then evolved into floppy shaped hats which were worn only in the white color as white is the color that signifies cleanliness in the kitchen.

From thereon, the chef hat got evolved and has come to what we see these days. Today, the chef hat is known by the name Toque Blanc., a French term wherein “Toque” refers to any brimless hat, and “Blanche” is French for white. The Toque Blanc itself is used to symbolize the skills, experience, and rank of the chef. Traditionally, the hat was meant to have 100 pleats. The number of pleats represents different ways that a chef knew to cook an egg. These days, though, the chef hats can have a maximum of 48 plates but the symbolism still stands. If the number of pleats changed, the height of the chef hat remained the same. The chef hats can go as high as 18 inches. The height of Hat signifies the rank of the cook in the kitchen. The chef with the tallest hat holds the highest rank in the kitchen staff and vice-versa.

Nowadays, the trend has changed. Different restaurants like crown fried chicken in Brooklyn have their own ranking criteria, specifying their own hats with their specific categorization of chefs, based on the hierarchy of chefs in their own kitchen. Different hat styles are also used to distinguish roles in the kitchen. Regardless, the specification and parameters are, the chef hat still embodies the prowess of the chef!

We at crown fried chicken in Brooklyn also follow hat trends to make food delicious so don’t wait and order your favorite food now by FoodOnDeal.


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