Blodgett Hydrovection-Convection Cooking With Moisture

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HV-100G-Double

Full Size Gas Hydrovection Oven

The latest buzz in the convection oven industry is being brought to you by Blodgett Oven Company in Burlington, Vermont. They currently have the only continuously humidified convection oven being produced and it’s sure make your baking more efficient and delicious. But what is Hydrovection, and how can it help you save time and money?

The Hydrovection oven has two settings: convection only cooking and Hydrovection at high and low humidity. It’s two ovens in one, somewhere in between convection and Combi, and is conveniently the same size as a standard convection oven. Although you cannot do a steam only cook as with a Combi (you always have to have convection with the moisture), the benefits come without debate. Not only will you see higher yields of 15% over convection cooking, but cooking times will also be reduced. You’ll save both time and money without sacrificing kitchen space. Also, you’ll enjoy the eco-friendly benefits found in the insulation and overall construction and as well as the water saving technology found in the quench system.

Don’t be fooled by the higher price tag-this oven will be paying for itself in no time with ease of use and higher yields. It comes in gas and electric models as well as a half size electric version. You can also upgrade to some pretty handy control options, including but not limited to the SmartTouch which can hold up to 255 recipes and allows for cavity moisture to be changed in accurate 10% increments.

This method of cooking is economical and eco-friendly, in a durable, space-saving machine. With a Blodgett Hydrovection oven, you can cook faster and serve your customers more in less time. A great addition to any kitchen, this equipment will produce for years. Three control options also give you a range of options to meet your cooking needs. Check out our website for all Blodgett hydrovaction ovens today!

How to Sharpen Your Chef’s Knife

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Most chefs know that a sharp knife is a safe knife. That’s because a sharp knife requires significantly less pressure to be applied for it to do its job. Dull knives require more, making them more likely to slip and cause injury. Most chefs also know that a sharp knife is also an efficient knife that will help you improve your cooking and make your job in the kitchen a lot easier. Cutting jobs simply go much faster with sharper knives. Sharp commercial cutlery will also enable you to create more uniform cuts, which will aid in more even cooking and improve the taste of your dishes.

Honing vs. Sharpening

If you have a higher quality set of knives, you may have honing steel. That’s the long, abrasive steel rod with a handle that you see TV chefs running their knives across. The honing steel is a tool made to maintain the edge of blade, to keep it smooth and straight. It isn’t for sharpening and shouldn’t be used as a substitute for sharpening. Use it once every few cutting jobs to maintain the quality of the cutting edge.

Sharpening Your Kitchen Knives

If used with regularity, you should sharpen your blades about every 60 days, especially the most used ones like your chef’s knife. The best way to sharpen your knives is with a whetstone. There are other methods, especially sharpening machines, but they tend to grind away too much of the blades surface, which will greatly reduce the knives useful lifespan.

Five Steps to a Sharp Knife

A good set of well-maintained knives should last you a long time. Here are the five steps to caring for your blades.

  1. Lay the whetstone on a cutting board or non-slip counter top with the coarse side facing up
  2. Grasp the handle in one hand and hold the edge of the blade to the surface of the stone with the other at about a 22 ½ degree angle
  3. With medium pressure slide the blade forward and across the stone. Left to right or right to left will depend on whether you are right- or left-handed. Maintain both pressure and angle as you run the entire length of the blade across the stone. Do this 10 times on each side of the blade
  4. Flip the stone over so that the fine side is facing up and apply 10 similar strokes to each side of the blade
  5. Finally, apply five to eight strokes per side with a honing steel. Be sure to maintain the same 22 ½ degree angle used for sharpening

Rinse the blade under water and carefully (it’s sharp) dry with a soft cloth or towel. Your knives are now as sharp, or sharper, than when you first bought them.

8 Food Safety Tips for your Kitchen

cambroEvery restaurant wants to provide not only the best tasting food, but food that is safe to consume. Below are 10 food safety tips you should follow to ensure you are protecting your employees and restaurant customers alike.

1. Wash your hands. Those that prepare the food in a restaurant should be regularly washing their hands. This should especially be done before and after handling any raw foods. Contact after working with raw meats or produce can infect already cooked items.

2. Wash your produce. Wash produce, even if it looks clean. If eating a fruit that can be peeled, scrub the surface to be sure any germs on the outside do not make their way into the interior section.

3. Use clean plates. Serve food on clean plates or trays. If surfaces used for raw meats are not cleaned correctly before cooked meats are placed there afterwards, bacteria are spread.

4. Replace serving plates. If fresh food is placed on an old tray, then the food becomes contaminated.

5. Take advantage of food thermometers. Use a food thermometer and be aware of Minimum Cooking Temperatures for each item. If an exact temperature is not provided, know the characteristics of the food to know when it is ready to serve. For example, different seafood items have certain colors or textures once they are prepared properly.

6. Find the right hot temperature. Keep your hot foods at 140 degrees F or above by using the right restaurant equipment and supplies. Before cooking, thaw frozen meat in a fridge, microwave, or under running water.

7. Find the right cold temperature. Keep your cold foods at 40 degrees F or below. Foods – hot or cold – should never sit out on a counter for longer than two hours.

8. Use two cutting boards. Be sure to have two cutting boards in the kitchen – one for raw meats and one for ready-to-eat foods. This will keep the risk of cross-contamination at bay. Many commercial kitchens use color coded cutting boards and knives to help alleviate this problem.

Supplies You Need to Cater a Buffet

Catering CartSummer is filled with celebrations, from weddings and graduation parties to holiday get-togethers. Whether you’re a small, start-up catering business, a mom preparing to celebrate her recent grad or a large banquet hall gearing up for wedding season, Burkett Restaurant Equipment has all of the serving line equipment and supplies you need – from set up to tear down – at the right price.

Catering & Buffet Supplies

Concessions Appliances: Burkett Restaurant Equipment offers a wide range of concession equipment ideal for catering and buffet services. Burkett carries new equipment for every concession need, whether you’re serving hot beverages from your new cappuccino machine, fresh soft pretzels from a heated merchandiser, or hot and juicy hot dogs off the roller grill. Don’t forget to pick up condiment dispensers so your customers can doctor up their snacks, and a popcorn machine to entice patrons with the smell of fresh popcorn wafting through the air. Shop our entire collection of concession equipment and supplies today for quality and variety.

Serving and Display Ware: One of the most important parts of a successful catering experience is the manner in which food and drink is served. For businesses, this means it is vital they have the proper equipment and supplies to present and serve food in an appealing and efficient manner. Burkett provides a selection of catering supplies including a wide variety of serving and display ware.

Hot & Cold Buffet Stations:  When the temperature of the food you serve is a priority, having the right equipment is vital. Cold Buffet Stations make it easy to keep your cold food chilled and ready to serve. Hot buffet stations are great for cafeterias, presentations, travelling restaurants, and catering companies because they are mobile. Utility Buffet Stations make it easy to keep your cold food chilled and ready to serve. You can choose from refrigerated cold food serving stations and non-refrigerated cold food serving stations to meet your business needs depending on what you are serving and where you are serving it at.

Banquet Carts: From Sunday brunch to memorable events and tabletop displays, banquet carts are valuable pieces of catering equipment when it comes to promoting your culinary excellence. Banquet carts designed to be mobile, keeping hot goods fresh for foodservice operations. Banquet cabinets are especially great for catering services because of their mobility. We sell a variety of heated cabinets with capacities ranging from 14 to 36 pans to keep it at just the right size for your uses.

Chafers & Accessories: Find all your chafing dishes, pans, and accessories at Burkett Restaurant Equipment & Supplies. Our high quality chafers, including stainless steel chafing pans, and accessories will keep your buffet elegant and efficient. We offer chafing dishes and more from the leading manufacturers and brands at the low prices you love.

How to size Grease Traps

grease trapFats, oils, and greases have no place in drains. A commercial grease trap is the ideal solution to keep them out. Grease traps slow the flow of water allowing the oils and grease to cool and then collect them to be cleaned out. Burkett Restaurant Equipment offers a variety of grease traps. To properly size one you need to use the following formula:

Commercial grease traps are sized according to the rate of incoming flow, in gallons per minute (GPM). Associated with this incoming flow rate is the trap’s capacity. This rated capacity, in pounds, is listed at twice the flow rate. For example, a 10 GPM trap has a rated capacity of 20 pounds.

Keep in mind to consider not only how much grease you may generate, but also the size of the bowl on your sink. Similarly to overflowing a funnel, if your grease trap is too small it won’t be able to keep up with the rate of water flow.

It is important to size a grease trap larger than calculated (round up to next available size only). A grease interceptor that is extremely oversized will have longer periods between pump-outs. The rotting grease will adversely affect the structure of the grease interceptor.

Tips for Buying Restaurant Equipment for your Home

buy-equipment-for-your-homeA trend in home kitchens is the use of commercial equipment like the pros use; emulating celebrity chefs can be fun and a great way to practice restaurant techniques at home. Many of these consumers know that commercial equipment can be versatile and durable compared to conventional home appliances. With special considerations, some commercial pieces can have a home within a residence. Burkett Restaurant Equipment is a leading dealer for commercial foodservice equipment and supplies that welcomes residential customers, and wants to provide a few important pieces of information you need to be aware of before you start shopping.

Purchasing Commercial Restaurant Equipment

The equipment Burkett sells is designed for commercial use in restaurants, school and hospital cafeterias, and food trucks or trailers. If you are considering purchasing commercial equipment for your home kitchen, please keep in mind the following:

  1. Commercial equipment is much louder than residential grade equipment, and often utilizes considerably more energy.
  2. Commercial equipment requires special clearance, insulation and power sources.
  3. Many times your home owners insurance will be voided if commercial grade equipment is installed in your home. Check with your insurance agent or homeowners policy before installing in your home.
  4. Manufacturers do not honor warranties when commercial equipment is used in a non-commercial setting.

With that being said, Burkett offers our home chefs a multitude of non-equipment items for your kitchen. Many of our small wares and tabletop items are available for purchase including:

  1. Bakery Supplies
  2. Bar Supplies
  3. Cookware
  4. Commercial Cutlery
  5. Pizza Supplies
  6. Food Prep Items (whisks, mixing bowls, etc.)
  7. Tumblers and Drinkware
  8. Dinnerware and Serving Platter/Bowls
  9. And more!

Many of these items can make a home chef comfortable creating restaurant-inspired recipes, and give confidence in their abilities to grow their culinary skills! By simply adding a Vitamix blender or specialty knives, a home chef can take their kitchen to a whole new level.

Get Cooking in the Great Outdoors

MAG-LPAGA30-2Memorial Day is a good indicator that the weather is (finally) breaking. By now, you’re getting your table and chairs out of storage, umbrellas unrolled, and outdoor patios, sidewalk cafes, and beer gardens are gearing up to open for business.  While residential grade grills are used for seasonal outdoor cooking, they have a hard time standing up to general wear and tear of the elements and daily use.

A fun alternative for foodservice operators with patios and outdoor seating is preparing some or all meals ordered outdoors….well, outdoors. Many places already have an outdoor bar, so why not consider purchasing a portable commercial grill? Much of this depends on your menu, of course, but the option to open up your outdoor seating and grilling burgers and brats is exciting! Portable commercial grills are also beneficial for taking your food (and brand) on the road to local sporting events, festivals, county fairs, or other offsite catering events.

Burkett Restaurant Equipment offers a wide variety of portable grills including propane and charcoal, steel top or chrome plated, and different sizes to suit your needs. Start shopping for your best summer today!

Benefits of Buying Melamine Dinnerware

THU-1010TB-2Melamine dinnerware is an economical solution for busy homes and restaurants where traditional china isn’t ideal. Melamine is available in a variety of colors and sizes to match any décor and, better yet, its nearly indestructible. If you’re looking for more reasons to give melamine a try, keep reading!

Savings
Melamine truly is a long-term investment. While it also tends to be more inexpensive than traditional china and other dinnerware, melamine is durable and lasts long – even after continual, everyday use. No more worrying about shattering or chipping your plates and mugs.

Variety
Melamine dinnerware is a great option if you’re looking to add a little color and fun to your table. Melamine tableware is designed for many occasions and applications; and is offered in a variety of colors and patterns. In addition, many of the brands offer higher end selections that appear like china and ceramic dinnerware, if you’re trying to keep it classy.

Nearly Indestructible
Thanks to its design, melamine is shatterproof. Melamine can withstand a number of scenarios. Whether you accidentally drop a plate or bowl there’s a good chance your melamine dinnerware will be perfectly fine. An added bonus, melamine is also relatively scratch resistant meaning no more marks from your silverware.

Insulation
Melamine is ideal for cold food displays because of its great insulation. Melamine is ideal for any cold application – salad bars, buffets, deli displays. Melamine also stays cool to the touch, so it’s perfect for nights when you’re serving hot entrees.

BPA Free
Melamine is safe for use. It won’t transfer or leach into food product as long it is not heated to 160 degrees Fahrenheit or higher. While it’s not suggested for ovens or microwaves, it is dishwasher safe and meets NSF approval for food safety.

Five Tips for Designing a Responsive Site for your Restaurant

turtle-kraals-responsive-website-design-remakeIt’s no secret that more web users are accessing the internet on their mobile devices such as cell phones and tablets. In order to ensure you’re helping your current and potential customers find your business while they’re away from their desks, you need to develop a responsive site. Responsive website design makes it possible for visitors to easily view and navigate a site whether they are viewing it on a desktop, tablet or smart phone.

Often, people look for a place to eat or get coffee while in their cars or walking around. Whether they are hungry or just doing research, a website that is difficult to navigate on a phone or tablet can drive potential customers away. Below are five tips to help you get started in designing a responsive site for your business.

  1. Simplicity: Aim for a simple design. Big, elaborate designs will just increase your page loading time…and we all know how much people like to wait for a page to load.
  2. Avoid PDF Menus: PDFs require a lot of re-sizing and scrolling on smaller screens, not exactly user friendly. Stick to a regular HTML page for your menu.
  3. Use Prominent Navigation: Remember that the majority of people accessing your site on a smartphone or tablet only have their fingers to navigate through your site. Make your navigation buttons large enough for easy use.
  4. Include Google Maps: Integration with Google Maps on your Contact Us or Location page makes it easy for users to find you and receive directions from where they happen to be when they searched for your business.
  5. Keep Content to a Minimum: Short and simple is particularly good for mobile users and small screens. Don’t overload the site with long blocks of texts, on small screens that means your users will be scrolling indefinitely. Besides, who really has the patience to read that 500 word retelling of your restaurant’s history?

How to Maintain Your Commercial Garbage Disposal

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Garbage DisposerDisposals provide a convenient way to deal with food waste, while improving sanitation in your kitchen. In the name of spring cleaning, here’s a closer look at how to maintain your commercial disposer, thanks to our friends at FES Magazine.

Commercial garbage disposals haven’t changed much since their initial design. Most basic commercial disposals are scaled up versions of residential types and range from 1/2 to 10 HP. While disposals require minimal maintenance, proper use will lengthen the system’s service life. Disposals are simple to maintain, and feature and easy-to-clean corrosion resistant finish.

Some things to keep in mind when utilizing your disposal:

  1. Do not use these systems to dispose fat, oil and grease.
  2. Flushing the drain after use will help prevent clogs. Some controls do this automatically.
  3. Periodically check your grind plates to help prevent clogs.
  4. After feeding waste through the disposer, run cold water for 10 to 20 seconds to push all of the particles to the main sewer line.
  5. While some systems just need to be wiped clean, others may include automatic cleaning flush systems that need to be activated on a daily basis.
  6. Use cold water to flush waste, since hot water can melt fat and allow it to solidify and block the drain line.

So how do you know when it’s time to replace your disposal? Depending on running time, the type of waste being processed, and drain plumbing conditions, a typical disposal can last an average of five years or as long as 20 years.

Here are five signs a disposal has reached the end of its service life.

Excessive Noise: Unusual or excessive noise, along with water leakage represent a pair of obvious signs a disposal is failing and needs replacement.

Drain Backups: This may indicate the blade teeth are worn and the mechanism needs replacing or may signify the disposal is on its way out.

Increased Grind Time: Blades wear out over time and when processing an excessive amount of hard material at high volumes. Signs such as increased grinding time or frequent clogging may signify a new disposal is needed.

Cracks: Over time, the disposal may develop cracks due to excessive use, chemicals and vibrations. Retire the unit when its construction is compromised.

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