NATURE OF WORK
Conservation Education Camp Cooks prepare and cook a variety of foods such as meats, fish, vegetables, fruits, salads and baked goods in the kitchen of a NYSDEC Summer Environmental Education Camp. Conservation Education Camp Cooks prepare and cook food, supervise a kitchen staff in meal preparation and cooking, and also in the cleaning of the kitchen and pantry areas.
Positions in this class are found in the NYSDEC Summer Environmental Education Camps. The Conservation Education Camp Cook lives on site and is part of the 24 hour Sunday – Saturday camp program.
CLASSIFICATION CRITERIA AND DISTINGUISHING CHARACTERISTICS
Conservation Education Camp Cooks are characterized by the preparation and cooking of a variety of foods including soups, sauces, meats, fish, vegetables, baked goods, etc. and frequently by the supervision of a kitchen staff in the storage, preparation, cooking and dispensing of food; and the cleaning and sanitizing of kitchen facilities, utensils and equipment.
The Conservation Education Camp Cook is responsible for the preparation of an entire meal including range cooking, baking and dessert cooking. Camp Cooks would supervise all kitchen operations and staff and volunteers working in the kitchen.
The Conservation Education Camp Cook is responsible to assign the kitchen staff to shifts, place food orders, create menus, work with Conservation Education Camp Director and Conservation Education Camp Health Director to meet dietary needs of staff and campers and to accommodate meal times and menus that meet the needs of the camp schedule. Conservation Education Camp Cooks ensure the proper sanitary preparation of all food items, the cleanliness of the kitchen and dish room as well as associated food serving areas.
TYPICAL ACTIVITIES, TASKS AND ASSIGNMENTS
- Prepares and cooks a variety of foods for Staff, Campers and Volunteers
- Reviews menus to determine type and quantity of food to be prepared
- Plans cooking schedule so food is ready at prescribed time
- Draws required foodstuffs from kitchen storage areas
- Measures, mixes, stirs, cuts, grinds, chops and seasons ingredients according to recipes using a variety of hand and power kitchen utensils
- Bakes, roasts, broils, fries and steams food as called for in recipes
- Observes and tastes food and adds ingredients and seasoning to improve texture and flavor
- Tests food for completion of cooking time and adjusts heat controls
- Prepares special foods for staff and campers requiring special diets
- Arranges for distribution of food through cafeteria style serving or through preparing food to be taken off the Camp Property for field trips and overnight camping trips
- Supervises staff and volunteers in serving of food
- May personally serve main course of meal
- May supervise Conservation Education Camp Aide 1 and Conservation Education Camp Aide 2 and Camp Volunteers:
- Makes specific work assignments in kitchen and pantry areas
- Directs the general cleaning after each meal
- Provides oral and written instructions regarding materials, utensils and procedures to be performed
- Demonstrates proper preparation and cooking
- Oversees and inspects performance to insure instructions, procedures and standards are observed
- Insures that proper sanitation procedures are always followed
- May drive camp vehicles into local community to purchase supplies as needed
- Conservation Education Camp Cooks may assist the conservation Education Camp Director with other camp duties such as lost camper searches and drills; transportation of campers; and interacting with campers and staff through educational kitchen related programs
RELATIONSHIPS WITH OTHERS
Conservation Education Camp Cooks have frequent oral communications with all levels of the kitchen staff giving and receiving instructions; information; and advice regarding preparation, cooking and serving of food. They may also have oral and written communications with the Conservation Education Camp Director and the Conservation Education Camp Health Director to exchange information about the preparation of special foods to meet dietary requirements. They may have oral communications with Counselor staff, Parents and Campers explaining food preparation and service procedures.
NATURE OF SUPERVISION
Conservation Education Camp Cooks are typically supervised by the Conservation Education Camp Director who provides work assignments, works with the Conservation Education Camp Cook to create menus and arrange for the necessary foodstuffs and utensils. The tasks are usually performed independent of direct observation by the Conservation Education Camp Director. Conservation Education Camp Cooks are also guided by the Department’s Health and Safety Unit and by the Department of Health in regards to procedures and recipes for food preparation, cooking and sanitation.
Conservation Education Camp Cooks usually supervise a kitchen staff by making work assignments, providing instructions and overseeing and inspecting work for adherence to instructions.
MACHINES, TOOLS AND EQUIPMENT USED
Conservation Education Camp Cooks use all of the cooking utensils and equipment found in a kitchen such as blenders, bowls, grills, grinders, kettles, knives, measuring devices, mixers, ovens, slicers, etc.
- Working knowledge of recipes, methods and procedures used in preparing and cooking food in large quantities.
- Working knowledge of employing and regulating agencies’ sanitary requirements concerning food preparation, cooking and storage.
- Working knowledge of the operation, cleaning and care of utensils, equipment and kitchen areas.
- Working knowledge of storage procedures for foodstuffs and leftover food.
- Basic knowledge of nutritional value of various foods within food groups.
- Ability to understand and follow oral and written instructions.
- Ability to use and manipulate kitchen utensils and equipment.
- Ability to perceive differences in form, color and appearance of food to determine completion of cooking time, deterioration or contamination.
- Ability to communicate instructions and advice effectively to fellow workers. As assigned
- Ability to supervise a small kitchen/pantry staff.
Three years of experience in the storage, preparation, cooking, and dispensing of food. An Associate’s or higher level degree in a culinary field will substitute for a maximum of two years of the required experience. A valid driver’s license is preferred.