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Chefs Are Sharing The Dishes They Hate Making The Most, And It's A Behind-The-Scenes Perspective You Don't Always Get

"I die inside when people order filet steaks well-done."

Recently, redditor u/ShylocksBloodyBond asked the chefs of Reddit, "What is that one dish on the menu you absolutely hate making?"

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Plenty of chefs revealed the dishes they actually can't stand making and WHY — and it's actually quite surprising. Here are some of the top-voted responses:

1. Eggs

Alexander Spatari / Getty Images

"Former chef here. Some of the simplest dishes are the most annoying. I always hated working breakfast rushes; people are very particular about eggs, and it's very easy to accidentally break a yolk."

u/lennoxmatt_819

2. Customized soups — and other already-prepared dishes

A large bowl of soup
Cavan Images / Getty Images / Cavan Images RF

"Customizing the soups. I used to work at a Michelin star restaurant. WE ALREADY HAVE THE SOUPS PREPARED BEFORE YOU WALK IN. I can't just take out the shrimp taste of a paella soup that I prepped before you walked in here."

u/vigilantepro

3. Soufflés

Rick Poon / Getty Images

"Soufflés. We make the crème pâte in advance, but when it’s ordered, the process is: warm crème pâte over a double boiler, and while that is warming, you need to hand whip a fresh meringue. Once the crème is warm, you have about three minutes to fold in the whites and then fill your molds to make sure you don’t touch the edges (as it makes them rise crooked). Into the oven for three minutes, open the oven, and rotate for two minutes. In those five minutes, you have to plate the rest of the table's desserts, which all have 8–10 components. Soufflé comes out to a waiting waiter and has to go to the table immediately or deflates.

While it’s not the most difficult thing in the world, when you’re busy and have 4–6 on order, and each one needs to pass a three-finger test (height above the rim of the mold or it gets sent back, and you need to restart), it can get quite hard and demoralizing when they don’t work."

u/LaviRavi

4. Sautéed shrimp

Grandriver / Getty Images

"Sautéing shrimp pretty much blows. They release a lot of water, which explodes when it hits the hot oil, so you get a lot of burns. Sometimes oil hits you in the face. It sucks, but whatever. You cook the shrimp and get on with it."

u/PoorPauly

5. German apple pancakes

Apples being sautéed in a pan
Jgareri / Getty Images/iStockphoto

"Our German apple pancake. First, you sauté Granny Smiths in clarified butter. Then, add three ladles of our German batter into a sauté pan and throw it in the oven for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and add clarified butter and cinnamon sugar. Flip delicate pancake with spatula and a dash of learning curve, return to oven, and cook for five more minutes. Flip the pancake onto a plate, and ensure it makes it to the table in less than a minute, as it deflates rapidly. Bonus points for when it’s ordered 10 minutes before we close.

Edit: Those who are apologizing for ordering it, don’t — it’s our job. Kitchen staff are gluttons for punishment."

u/RateBackground419

6. Anything puréed

Fotografiabasica / Getty Images

"I was a chef at a nursing home, and anything puréed for people who are on that dietary restriction was gross to me. I literally had to take whatever meal I made, throw it in a blender, and put it in a bowl. I always felt so bad."

u/Bloodragedragon

7. Calamari

Photo By Cathy Scola / Getty Images

"Calamari. If you worked in a restaurant cleaning them and prepping them to cook, you would know. They come with all kinds of crap in them, and they smell terrible when spoiled raw. Never again."

u/Sleepdprived

8. Cinnamon buns

Jenna Greenwell / Getty Images/EyeEm

"Baker here. Cinnamon buns are the majority of our business, but so time-intensive. And while the finished product comes out SO good, they take three days to make between dough, proofing, and baking. By the time the customer gets them (warm), I swear they owe me much more than $5 a bun. Exhausting."

u/nomoredrama165

9. Marshmallows...and tempering chocolate

William Perugini / Getty Images/Cultura RF

"I'm a pastry chef. I HATE making marshmallows (the worst texture for touching, tasting, preparing, and cleaning) and tempering chocolate (fickle, frustrating, and expensive). I’ll happily flambé you a goddamn bananas foster if it means I don’t have to make marshmallows or filled chocolates."

u/sezah

10. Off-menu orders

Reza Estakhrian / Getty Images

"When someone is just [famous] enough to be able to get away with ordering off the menu."

u/QuesaritoOutOfBed

"I worked at a restaurant that had a few local 'celebrities' and business owners who would order off-menu. It always felt like it was for show. A power move designed to let others know how important they thought they were. I heard that they stopped letting them order off-menu with the new manager. In a busy steakhouse restaurant on a Friday night, they would order things like an omelet. It wasn't impossible to do, but rather inconvenient."

u/wickedlyclever

11. Pierogi

Alexander Spatari / Getty Images

"I hand-make pierogi for my food truck. ... Making one or two batches is annoying, but making enough for a commercial operation completely sucks. The dough I use doesn’t have water in it, just egg and sour cream, so the gluten doesn’t form into very strong bonds. That means that I can’t use a pasta roller to make sheets of dough to cut into dumpling skins. I have to hand-roll everything with a rolling pin, and my work surface isn’t big enough to roll out an entire batch."

u/wzl46

12. Hollandaise sauce

Someone cutting into a poached egg with hollandaise sauce
Travelcouples / Getty Images

"Hollandaise. As much as I love eating it, it's such a hassle making it. Like 20 minutes of whisking."

u/Curious-Anybody-7632

13. Crêpes

A crepe drizzled with chocolate and topped with a strawberry and a banana slice
Tanja-tiziana, Doublecrossed Pho / Getty Images

"Making crêpes. ... I’m talking about making them in a pan, in large amounts, like a big catered event where you have hours of pouring and flipping. Beyond boring."

u/Sfswine

14. Well-done filet steak

Loooby / Getty Images/iStockphoto

"People ordering filet steak cooked well-done. They will always send it back because it's like a 'rubber boot' or 'too tough.' Well DUH, what do you expect? Filet is not the right cut to be served well-done in the first place. Takes a good 30–45 minutes to butcher the steak without burning the outside; order a thinner cut if you would like well-done. It's my job, so I still fulfill the requests as that's what I am paid to do, but I die inside when I see that on the ticket."

u/CabbageCat5000

15. Ravioli

Ravioli before it's cooked
Lauripatterson / Getty Images

"Ravioli, because we had to hand-make each individual one. Took absolutely ages."

u/EmiliaBaer

16. PB and J

Burwellphotography / Getty Images

"Worked in a sandwich shop for a bit in college. ... Every time someone ordered a PB and J off the kids menu, we had to clear off both lines, change our gloves, wipe down every surface the peanut butter got close to, and wash the knife we used to cut it. Like, I get it. But having to treat peanut butter like nuclear waste in the middle of a lunch rush was never fun. Plus, the peanut butter was too thick for the bread we used for the PB and J, so the bread ended up tearing half the time."

u/FoxFyre1

And finally:

17. Charcuterie boards

Bhofack2 / Getty Images/iStockphoto

"Charcuterie boards. Stuff falls off all over the place."

u/ALiteralPotatooooo

"I cannot wait for that trend to end."

u/Pithecanthropus88

Did any of these surprise you? And fellow chefs, which dishes do you hate making? Let us know in the comments below!

Note: Some responses have been edited for length and/or clarity.