{Book Review} No Experience Necessary


I’ve read one or two chef memoirs but this is definitely the most crazy “out there” life of a chef that I’ve ever read! Norman Van Aken takes you on a ride of his life starting when he gets out of school and spans the first twenty something years of his life in the restaurant business.

What’s interesting about Norman is he has no formal chef training and worked his way up in the kitchen after answering a newspaper ad stating, “no experience necessary“.

Norman’s memoir starts off in Michigan where he works various odd jobs, including a stint as a carny, hitchhiking across the country and partying with his friends.

He has lived a very interesting life (most of the stories can not even be repeated on this family friendly blog) and he was obsessed about learning everything. He read cooking magazines and cookbooks in order to teach himself. Now he’s considered a pioneer.

The best part? Each chapter of Norman’s colorful life is accompanied by a recipe. A few of the delightful recipes include carny corn dogs and deviled quails eggs. I had a hard time following all of the famous names mentioned. Not being a serious chef I have no idea who many of them are but none the less I definitely enjoyed the story of Norman Van Aken, the adventures of his youth and how he became a great chef.

I received a copy to review

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