Written by Shirley Parker
Several companies have published chef software for use in the food industry. Some programs can also help the home cook keep track of recipes. And we thought the chef had it all in his or her head. No one has to do that any more, not in this amazing world of communication and instant retrieval of information-as long as the power stays on, that is.
Professional chef software users in the hospitality industry, such as the Marriott Hotels, use specific restaurant software that is also utilized by chefs in other major hotel chains and restaurants, and by operators of large catering and educational establishments. Still others use competing software to professionally manage their house recipes and menus. Some programs enable the export of files to Excel or PDF format, which can be very useful. And database security is a pretty standard feature with them.
Palmtop Publishing has produced chef software for the Palm OS. You can carry your handheld cooking references and recipes with you wherever you go. It will let you look up the ingredients you might still need before you leave work, if you still have time to cook in the evenings or on weekends.
Chef Software and International Measurements
Depending on the chef’s location, he or she may need to convert a recipe that’s been received. Recipes in the United States measure ingredients in cups, where traditional cooks in the UK measure them in ounces (or pounds, for larger recipes), in spite of the metric system creeping in. In mainland Europe, the metric system is definitely used. That means a cooking converter can be a lifesaver for a chef trying out and adapting new ideas. Shareware and freeware on the Internet can often supply converters.