Awesome infographic by Noel Dempsey Kitchen & Design
Awesome infographic by Noel Dempsey Kitchen & Design
There are many kitchen utensils and gadgets that are available in the market and it is almost impossible to buy all of them. Most kitchens simply do not have the necessary space that would allow them to have an extensive set of kitchen accessories.
It is therefore important to understand the basic needs of any particular kitchen. We are focusing here on creating a wonderful baker’s kitchen.
Baking is a complicated process and requires a multi step process. The activities involved, often require a variety of baking accessories and utensils for regular use. Read the rest of this entry »
A kitchen is a very important place for any home and different people have their ideas about designing the best one for their homes as well as businesses.
It is however, not possible to design a great kitchen unless you are able to comprehend that all kitchens are based on a trio of elements. These three elements include the sink, the cooking range and the preparation area.
There are also some people who now include the refrigerator in the kitchen trio in place of the preparation area because modern cooking is based around elements that can be stored for a long time in the fridge. Read the rest of this entry »
Although it is impossible to become a great cook in a day, there are a few skills that can quickly turn anyone into a decent cook. It is not essential to use exotic ingredients to improve your cooking, though access to such items such as aged cheese and virgin olive oil can certainly boost the existing flavors. Read the rest of this entry »
Energy conservation is very important and it can provide a better ecosystem for us all.
However, as the kitchen is a place where we commonly need to combine both the cold and the hot elements, this means that we certainly face a dilemma when designing a kitchen that is efficient with respect to the loss of energy.
There are however, a few steps that can truly provide increased efficiency in a kitchen, and ensure that the utility expenses for both the cooling and heating needs can be reduced. We have placed them in the order of importance below. Read the rest of this entry »
Whether you plan to start a restaurant, a franchise or a small kitchen that delivers food in offices and residential areas, you need to build your kitchen according to some standards in order to ensure safety of the employees as well as the customers. In fact, all commercial outlets are also subjected to follow a set code and maintain some rules so that no customer contracts any illness due to degradation of the food quality.
Generally, ventilation enables ample clean air to enter a kitchen and diffuse heat so that the occupants don’t face any difficulty in breathing. These ventilation rules are to be applied everywhere, whether it is a small restaurant or a big institutional kitchen, to balance the airflow.
The ventilation system installed should be noise free, clean and should be free from fire risks. It should also remove all types of odors developed through the cooking process. Sufficient airflow should also be present near stoves or ovens for complete combustion. Otherwise, it may lead to formation of carbon monoxide within the premises.
To improve ventilation, the standards should be followed to the letter as they will give optimum and efficient results. For this, a kitchen should have a duct or fan to suck in hot air and a passage to let fresh air in. If an exhaust hood or a canopy is being used, it should capture the heat by using filters. If a duct is being used, it can suck all the grease and heat, and take it out into the atmosphere via a proper passage.
Proper food handling
People with low immune systems, such as elderly adults, small children and pregnant ladies, are susceptible to infections due to improper handling of raw or cooked food. They may thus, develop life threatening allergies too.
This makes proper handling of food a part of health ethics, and food should always be prepared and handled according to specific health codes. Many organizations even ask their employees to cover their hair and wear plastic gloves before touching prepared food as regulated. While preparing food, separate cutting boards should be used for raw meat, chicken and vegetables so that the spread of germs can be minimized.
The staff should also be trained to check the temperature, smell and color of raw or prepared food. If they are in doubt about the quality or freshness of a particular dish, it should be rejected and should not be served to your customers. Raw food should always be sealed and separated in air tight containers, away from prepared food, so that it doesn’t become contaminated.
According to general health codes, all the employees working in a commercial kitchen should be in good health. They should not be suffering from any chronic or viral infections, because these bacteria may transfer from the employee to the food, resulting in complaints from the customers about the quality of the food, which made them ill. Therefore, regular health checkup for employees should be conducted, so that they remain in the best of health.
Although it is the duty of government officials to carry out inspections of food chains and restaurants in the city on an annual basis, owners should also ensure that all standards and regulations are being met. They should also see how frequently utensils and other equipment are being washed. A check on surface cleaning is also a must, because if the surfaces are dirty, it can contaminate the food that comes in contact with it. It also shows poor management and can cause health hazards for the customers, resulting in bad publicity for the business.
When you go out and search the market, you will realize that there is a variety of equipment needed on a daily basis for commercial kitchens. So buying the right items depends on your requirements. For instance, if you are planning to start a fast food outlet, you may need meat mincers, various types of knives, food processors, fryers, drink dispensers, and char grills. And this is just the very basic equipment. As your menu expands, so will your equipment needs. On the other hand, while opening a Chinese restaurant, things may be different as you may need woks, large pots and pans, and so on. Nevertheless, the basic requirements remain the same.
There is a long list of items included in cutlery, as there is no fixed formula for what to have. Large, sturdy spatulas are handy as they can handle large amounts of food in one go. Meanwhile, big strainers are helpful for straining French fries, wontons or dumplings whereas fine mesh strainers are used to remove fine bits and pieces from the oil and so on.
Along with plates, knives, spoons, glasses, and forks needed within the kitchen for the use of the staff or for your customers; there are many small but very handy accessories include knife sharpeners, cutting boards, digital scales, garlic pressers, graters, rolling pins etc which you might need every day. For this, you need to review your menu and recipes to determine the equipment that is a must have.
Blenders are usually used for mixing soft foods and liquids. Commercial blenders mostly have a narrow shape with a sharp blade. These blades are strong enough to crush ice to combine it with frozen drinks too. But blenders have two categories; ones that can puree food items and others that are multi- functional over-the-counter blenders which are mainly used for blending, grinding, whipping or preparing smoothies.
This is the most essential requirement for any commercial kitchen so that raw food as well as chilled desserts, remain fresh and at the right temperature. There are different sizes and options available. These may include blast freezers, ice machines, or under-the-counter refrigerators.
Plan to invest in high quality dishwashers, which are cost effective as well as big enough to wash a big load of dishes together. Be sure that you have ample space to place it near your coking area. In this way, it will be helpful for the cooks to access the dishes easily.
Commercial ovens consume a lot of space but they are a blessing in disguise as food can be cooked in minutes. You can choose between convection ovens or conveyor ovens according to your needs but mostly, ovens are required for roasting, barbeque, pizzas or grills. They have become a necessity, although it depends on your budget as to whether you buy a gas-powered oven or an electric one.
While choosing cooking utensils, make sure they are large enough to cater to the food quantities your chefs will be cooking. They should also be durable to last you for longer while the cooking continues throughout the day.
Depending on your menu, rice cookers can enable you to serve rice within minutes. They are available in different sizes with various options.
Commercial kitchen equipment is not cheap, so if you have already set up a kitchen, then you need to make sure that routine maintenance is conducted on the equipment. In this case, manuals can be very helpful or online help is also available if necessary. The small appliances along with the large equipment should all be kept with care. All appliances should also be inspected or replaced when required. On the whole, consider your budget and your kitchen space before buying the equipment you need for your commercial kitchen.
While working in a restaurant or a hotel, a chef not only learns how to cook delicious dishes but in fact, they are able to train themselves to handle things quickly and efficiently. An intelligent chef knows the type of equipment to purchase to quicken the pace of their work and serve the dish at the appropriate time. But ideally, as an owner, you need to conduct thorough search in the market before spending your money on the cooking equipment.
However, when organizing a commercial kitchen, make sure that the equipment bought is large enough and in sufficient quantity to cater to the needs of the chefs on a large scale. As most large-scaled kitchens are also working for longer periods, therefore they need durable and heavy duty equipment to sustain high temperatures.
Also, before buying, one last, but important consideration is the safety of the cooks and their sous-chefs. The equipment used should be designed in such a manner that the food is cooked thoroughly with all the safety measures that prevent employees from burns, cuts and other such incidents. Ideally, the equipment given below can help speed up the process of cooking food in your commercial kitchen:
Also known as compartment steamers, they are available in both, gas and electric varieties. As these cookers are properly insulated, they help in creating more steam to reduce heat loss and give better results. They also take less time in cooking the food and hence, save a lot of water too.
Types of Refrigeration
Various types of refrigeration equipment like refrigerators, blast freezers, or walk-ins are manufactured in the market, which help in cooling down desserts as well as beverages and cold entrees. As they work non-stop, they do however, utilize a lot of energy. Therefore, commercial refrigeration equipment should be efficient enough to keep the food at the right temperature while consuming less energy in the long run.
Microwave Convection Ovens
In spite of being more expensive than normal ovens, microwave convection ovens do not need to be preheated and are very efficient in warming or defrosting food items. They help in cooking food twice as fast as normal ovens at low temperatures. In this way, food items such as meat, cook quickly, tend to shrink less, and still remain tender and juicy.
When purchasing griddles; remember that that they should cook more food in lesser time and maintain temperatures on a lower scale. For this, they need to be made of steel so they consume less heat while cooking the food quickly and radiating less heat in the kitchen.
In comparison to gas fryers, electric fryers are more efficient in reducing heat loss due to discharge. These fryers also reach their ideal cooking temperatures in less than 10 minutes and to maintain a good flavor of the food, these fryers also filter used oil easily, making cooking hassle free and speedy.
Bread slicers are very effective in bakeries where bread is being produced in bulk amounts. Commercial bread slicers slice several loaves of bread in seconds. However, one thing that should be kept in mind is that the bread should always be cooled properly before slicing, for better and quicker delivery.
The more efficient equipment you use, the more you can save energy, money and time in your establishment. This will in fact, contribute to a more managed and calmer kitchen environment. The staff will also feel more comfortable and work more steadily, resulting in better and quicker delivery of high quality and hygienic food.
Nowadays, the best materials used in today’s commercial kitchens are a combination of stainless steel, wood and glass. However, commercial kitchens are mostly created using high quality stainless steel due to its durability and corrosion-free features. Even large-sized commercial kitchen cabinets are customized with stainless steel to store utensils, cutleries and food items present in the kitchens of big restaurants, hotels and catering companies.
Stainless Steel Cabinets
Stainless steel is the most wanted metal nowadays, in manufacturing items related to commercial kitchens as well as residential ones. There are a lot of benefits of using stainless steel as it looks elegant, is indestructible and bacteria-resistant as well. These cabinets are further made according to NFS International’s standards to help protect the environment as well as consumer products. The different types include:
Standard Stainless Steel Cabinets
The standard size of stainless steel storage cabinets is usually 12-gauges thick, which means a thickness of 2.78mm thickness. They are made of stainless steel alloy so that the cabinets are rust proof and acid resistant and can keep the utensils and cookware in perfect shape.
See-through Stainless Steel Cabinets
The see-through cabinets include two long clear polycarbonated windows for a clear view of the items that are kept inside. This helps in accessing and arranging things properly for later use.
Stainless Steel Cabinets with Plastic Bins and Legs
These cabinets have 6 inch legs and include various sized bins to keep accessories organized. The doors are bi folding so they take less space and provide locks as well, for additional security.
Stainless Steel Ventilated Cabinets
These cabinets have vents for air to flow through and prevent the cabinet from becoming too stuffy. The vents also provide a brief look into the cabinet and this type provides locking mechanisms as well.
Stainless Steel with a Wooden Touch
These cabinets are wrapped with stainless steel on its outer surface, whereas the interior is made of plywood. Rails are also attached to provide softness and fluidity in opening and closing the cabinets. The wood used is mostly maple along with hickory or oak. It gives a more rustic look and can be used in a variety of ways as well as in different colors. You can also use more than one texture of wood in creating cabinets based on your preference. To get a more exotic look, expensive wood such as ebony, mahogany or walnut can be used in the interior.
They are available in multiple color schemes with different patterns and textures. They are very easy to clean and are quite durable. These cabinets are made of layered sheets which are pasted to each other and therefore, should be handled with extra care, as these layers can chip off easily. The overall theme is very attractive with a beautiful soft touch to the overall kitchen as well as the inner cabinets.
Wood Veneer Cabinets
Wood veneer cabinets present a good layout to the overall kitchen and can be customized according to the requirements. They are available in different colors, mostly like light brown, dark brown and red, along with other colors too. A special coating is provided on the kitchen cabinets to make them water proof. The inner cabinets are designed in such a way that they provide generous space for storage. Removable shelves are also provided for easy cleaning.
There is also an option of installing free standing cabinets instead of permanently fixed cabinets in your commercial kitchen. As they are movable, these cabinets can be easily shifted according to your need and there are lots of options available in the market in this range. All you have to do is to choose the right one according to your requirement and budget.
On the whole, when designing your kitchen, keep the food quality, hygiene and safety standards in mind, as well as the functionality of the cabinets and you will end up making the right choice.
A lot of things, when combined together, make the ideal commercial kitchen. This includes important utensils, stations, counter-tops, devices, and even areas in the kitchen that are present for different functions. The space required for a commercial kitchen is greater than an everyday conventional kitchen in the house. The reason for this is that a commercial kitchen consists of different areas which serve different purposes.
Since many people work together in the kitchen as a team, this tactic is used to keep the working in the kitchen organized.
This is the area where the extra supply of food is stored. Different stacks are present for different types of item. Here, shelves for dry items should be kept separately from liquid items to avoid any mishaps that might ruin both of them. Furthermore, delicate items should be preserved separately from heavy ones in order to prevent them from getting damaged or rotten.
Similarly, items that get ruined easily in high temperatures should be kept in the freezer as compared to items that do not require cool temperatures. For that purpose, a refrigerating area can be used, as discussed below.
Refrigerating areas are of different types as well, which include; walk-in cooling units, line station refrigerators, industrial freezers, and supplemental refrigerators. The line station and supplemental refrigeration units are essential for commercial kitchens as they preserve the already prepared food in order to serve it on time.
The walk-in cooling unit is similar to a storage room; but the temperature in it is cooler and ranges from -2 to 4 C. This is not as important for smaller commercial businesses; nevertheless most of the kitchens in big commercial settings have this facility. Lastly, an industrial freezer is also the need for a commercial kitchen and comes with multiple door options.
The kitchen in our homes has single or double workstations; but in commercial settings, there are greater numbers of stations required, on which different functions can be performed. These include; the cooking station, cutting station, preparation station, and stations where small equipments are kept.
The cooking station, as the name suggests, consist of the stove and oven where the cooking is carried out. All the cutting for vegetables and meat etc is done on the cutting station. Meanwhile, the preparation counter can be used for chopping food, as well as preparing desserts or simply setting up the plates. Last, but not the least, small equipment such as food processors, meat slicers and blenders are kept on the equipment station to be used as needed.
Safety Equipment Storage
Safety is the major concern in a commercial kitchen; therefore a complete area is dedicated to safety equipment that must be there at all costs. Instruments like industrial grade fire extinguishers, water hoses, and other fire suppressing machinery should be present in that area, along with first aid kits.
The Municipal Health Department of many countries make it compulsory for many commercial restaurants to include a dish washing unit and triple-sink wash stations which are installed in the cleaning area of the commercial kitchen. These help in washing a number of dishes together while ensuring proper hygiene. This area is kept separate from the rest, which makes cleaning easier and feasible without causing disorganization.
All the equipment present in these areas should meet the necessary guidelines for commercial kitchens as outlined by the commercial health code. Preplanning the areas you would like to add in your commercial kitchen is necessary to avoid any excess spending of money later on.