Key Catering Equipment Needed for Commercial Kitchens
Kitchen technology has advanced tremendously in recent years, allowing manufacturers to produce more sophisticated and multi-functional equipment that can improve the running of commercial kitchens, as well as save significantly on energy costs.
In the latest .TAG Insight, we review some of the key catering equipment that any commercial kitchen should consider including to help increase efficiency, save costs and create a better working environment for your brigade.
Energy-saving catering equipment
Induction hobs have revolutionised commercial kitchens. Not only do they help reduce the ambient heat in the kitchen, benefitting your chefs and kitchen staff, they also require less space than traditional gas ranges and are much more energy-efficient.
The automatic pan detection means hobs turn on when a pan is placed directly on top of it, so you are only using energy when you need it. The hob heats up and reacts instantly like a conventional gas hob, giving chefs the same heat and flexibility, but in a much safer environment.
It will automatically switch off when a pan is removed from the heat or if it detects that a forgotten pan has boiled dry. This all saves energy because it is not switched on all day like a gas range.
An additional benefit of induction technology is that it is easy to clean, saving time.
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Remote refrigeration pack
With energy costs increasing and the growing need to commit to a reduction in emissions, refrigeration must be a key consideration as it uses power 24/7.
While a remote refrigeration pack system has an initial higher cost outlay, it is more energy-efficient, and saves space (plus heat) in the kitchen which can help increase refrigeration capacity, or capacity for other equipment.
The remote monitoring system enables staff to closely monitor energy use, and will instantly alert them to any problems. Often these problems can be fixed remotely, requiring no on-site attendance reducing ongoing maintenance costs.
The system helps to provide a return on investment from 1 – 3 years.
Multi-functional catering equipment
Whilst TAG is very conscious to provide the most technologically advanced equipment to be more efficient and environmentally friendly, another key consideration is providing equipment that is multi-functional.
The ergonomics of a commercial kitchen are vital to the smooth running of service. A well-designed space will enable fewer chefs to prepare more covers, and clever use of multi-functional equipment will enable you to offer a more varied menu without the expense of installing extra appliances which will also take up valuable space.
Try to prevent installing equipment that only has one function. Not only will it take up space for a small part of the menu, it can mean that your menu is restricted and cannot evolve with changing trends or needs of your customers.
By analysing your menu and needs, such as number of covers, we will be able to suggest suitable equipment that has multiple uses.
Rational VarioCookingCenter® (VCC)
As space-saving solution for a kitchen refit we undertook for the Oxo Tower Restaurant, we introduced them to the Rational VarioCookingCenter® (VCC).
This incredible piece of equipment has so many functions, including boiling, frying and deep-frying, you will have the potential to remove a pasta boiler, deep-fat fryer and plancha from the kitchen design. It also has pressurised cooking capabilities meaning large batch cooking such as stocks and sauces can be left to cook overnight, safely and efficiently.
The VCC is easy to use and produces consistent results, which also means less food waste and enables staff to achieve the same high-quality results every time. The additional benefits include more efficient energy consumption and a reduction in water bills – the manufacturer, Rational, estimates commercial kitchens could make savings of 40% on energy and 70% on water usage.
An additional bonus is that, as a sealed unit, the Rational VCC also takes heat out of the kitchen which creates a much more pleasant working environment. Combined, all the benefits of multi-functional equipment make them essential for commercial kitchens.
Key equipment can improve business
The increasing efficiency of modern commercial kitchen equipment therefore not only helps you save energy, it will also enable your chefs to work more efficiently, allowing the same number of staff to serve a larger variety of dishes and, in turn, more covers. Furthermore, with reductions in ambient heat, your chefs will also enjoy the benefit of more temperate working conditions.
It may well be a number of years since you last needed to upgrade your commercial kitchen, so contact us to find out how the latest technology can help your staff work far more efficiently and effectively at the same time as making cost savings on energy bills, cleaning, maintenance, and even staffing requirements.