Target Catering Equipment Blog
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Choosing The Best Flooring For Your Commercial Kitchen
Of all the areas of your commercial kitchen, your flooring is one of the most important. Any food or drink that gets spilled onto it can turn it into a death trap for your staff. Spillages can lead to people slipping over, and if they're not cleaned up straight away they can become a breeding ground for bacteria. Dirt and bacteria already make their way into your kitchen via the shoes on the feet of your staff, so it's important to do everything you can to minimise this. When it comes to purchasing the flooring for your commercial kitchen there are several things that you should take into account:
- Slip resistance: Commercial kitchens get quite busy and chaotic at peak service times, with lots of staff trying to move around all at once. All of that hustle and bustle, accompanied by food, grease and water on the kitchen floor can lead to it becoming a serious slip and trip hazard. Slip resistant flooring is absolutely essential in any commercial kitchen in order to minimise and control the risk of your staff slipping and injuring themselves.
- Practicality: Safety and practicality should be at the forefront when you're thinking about what flooring to purchase. For example a tiled floor can easily chip and crack with the constant heavy use associated with a commercial kitchen. This then opens up more nooks and crannies in which bacteria can hide and grow. Flooring that is durable, not prone to cracking, and ideally in one piece without seams is ideal for your kitchen.
- Maintenance: Easy to clean flooring is ideal in a commercial kitchen setting as spillages need to be dealt with as quickly as possible so as not to disrupt service too much. Slip resistant epoxy or vinyl flooring is easy to clean and doesn't provide cracks etc for food to get caught in, meaning that it can be swept and mopped much more easily.
- Durability: Changing the flooring in your commercial kitchen every two to three years is a real hassle so it's important to look for flooring that offers excellent durability. A slip-resistant, easy-to-clean, durable floor might appear to cost more in terms of initial outlay but it will save you money, time and hassle in the long run.
Commercial Kitchen Arrangement
There is no hard and fast rule that says you must arrange your commercial kitchen in a certain way in order to achieve the best results. There are four arrangements that are quite common among many commercial kitchens, but at the end of the day persoanl preference and kitchen size and shape all come into play.
- Ergonomic - An ergonomically configured kitchen is one that is arranged according to what is most comfortable for the chef and kitchen staff. For example a freezer may be placed directly next to a deep-fat fryer. This is not energy efficient but it allows for easy access to things such as frozen chips, which can be placed into the deep-fat fryer without the chef having to take a step.
- Assembly line - This type of kitchen configuration is often best suited to a restaurant that produces large quantities of the same food, such as pizzas. An assembly line kitchen is laid out according to the order in which certain equipment is used. For example a pizza restaurant assembley line may start with the refrigerator that stores the dough, then onto the dough shaping area, then to the prep table laid out with sauce, cheese and toppings, then on to the oven, and finally to the heated holding station or boxing area.
- Zone style - A zone style kitchen configuration is typically divided into several different zones. For example you might find a dedicated food preparation area, a cooking area, a refrigeration area and a sanitisation and cleaning area. Zoned kitchens like this can help to keep things organised and prevent cross-contamination as everything has its own dedicated area.
- Island style - This type of kitchen configuration is similar to a zone style kitchen but there is one main block, or island, in the centre of the kitchen. A commercial kitchen with an island style configuration will typically place the cooking equipment in the centre, with the outer walls of the kitchen being home to the food preparation areas, storage and hot holding area.
Commercial Kitchen Layout
The design and layout of a commercial kitchen can mean the difference between a successful restaurant and one that doesn't achieve the desired success. A poorly designed kitchen will lead to disorganisation and delays in service. You'll get through fewer covers during service which will ultimately affect the profit margin of your restaurant business. A kitchen should be designed to make service flow smoothly and quickly, enabling your chefs to keep up with the demands of the covers. When planning the design and layout for a commercial kitchen you need to consider the following factors:
- Available space - The general rules for the kitchen space is to allow five square feet of space per seat in your restaurant. Therefore if your restaurant can hold 100 customers at full capacity then you'd ideally need a 500 square foot kitchen. Once you have allocated the right amount of space to you kitchen it's then important to make sure that space gets used as efficiently as possible.
- Mobility -A commercial kitchen that has been arranged well should allow employees to move around easily without bumping into one another or bumping into equipment or fixtures. The easy mobility of your employees is essential for a smooth-running kitchen, especially during peak service times.
- Health and safety - Whether you're setting up a brand new commercial kitchen or refurbishing an existing one it's important to keep your local health and safety executive informed. They're always on hand to provide any advice and guidance that you need whilst you're setting your kitchen up and once the restaurant is open.
- Ergonomics - The fewer steps your employees need to take in completing a task, the better it is all round. An ergonomically designed kitchen should enable employees to complete all of their tasks in one spot with minimal bending, reaching, turning and walking. Ergonomics in the kitchen can also help to reduce the amount of injury, discomfort and fatigue experienced by employees.
- Energy efficiency - Commercial kitchens that have energy efficiency as one of their primary considerations will ultimately save money on their utility costs, thus improving their profit margin. Refrigeration and cooking equipment should be kept as far apart as is practicable while cooking equipment should be arranged in order to maximise the efficiency of the extractor hood.
- Flexibility - It is important for a commercial kitchen to be flexible in its layout. Changes in food trends could lead to new menus, which in turn can lead to certain equipment now being used more or less often that it previously was, so the location of the equipment may need to be revised. It is recommended that equipment is placed so that it is easy to move during cleaning anyway.
- Sensory appeal - Your customers will be able to smell the appetising food being prepared in the kitchen, but you could use the kitchen layout to appeal to their other senses too. Exhibit kitchens allow your customers to see what is going on, so this appeals to their visual sense.
Commercial Kitchen Design - 9 Points To Consider
Careful consideration to commercial kitchen design, prior to embarking on your kitchen installation, will ensure you end up with a kitchen which suits you as well as your staff and will work efficiently during your busiest service times.
- Do I need planning permission?
- What sort of catering equipment will be needed and will this require a specialist kitchen ventilation system?
- Have designated work areas been defined for different operations in the kitchen to incorporate a smooth work flow?
- Have wall and floor finishes been chosen that are safe and easy to keep clean?
- Is catering equipment chosen energy efficient, easy to keep clean and service and from a local, reliable and trusted source?
- Is frozen and chilled storage, as well as dry goods storage been incorporated in order to make production easy set under counters near point of use?
- Has enough space been allowed for easy movement around the commercial kitchen?
- Has cleaning been made easy with sinks and a designated bucket sink in the cleaning area?
- Dishwashers are great, but what happens if they break down? Make sure you have at least 2 sinks in dishwashing tabling so that you can wash by hand if necessary.
Check out energy efficient catering equipment which can be incorporated into your commercial kitchen design.
The Advantages Of Induction Hobs
Gas hobs have long been the first choice for professional kitchens all over the world. However in recent years we've seen an increasing number of restaurants and catering outlets across Europe adopting the induction style of cooking instaed. This method of hob based cooking is not only limited to professional kitchen's more and more homeowners are choosing to incorporate induction hobs into their new kitchen designs, here's a quick rundown of just why this type of cooking is becoming increasingly widespread:
Speed - The process of induction means that the pan heats up much quicker than with gas or electric based cooking. Induction hobs work by using electromagnetic activity in the cooker top to trigger electromagnetic activity in the pan, so the pan effectively heats itself up without the middleman i.e. flames. This means less time waiting for things to heat up, so therefore food can be cooked quicker. In a restaurant environment this means much quicker service and happy customers.
Energy efficiency - With the pan heating itself up more of that heat can get to the food. gas and electric hobs give off radiant heat which heats everything around them. In a professional kitchen environment this means a lot less radiant heat is emotted during cooking; a cooler kitchen means happier, more efficient chefs! Induction hobs are a much more energy efficient way to cook due to the reduced energy consumption that comes with quicker cooking.
Safety - The hob area can be one of the most dangerous places in the kitchen whether a domestic one or a professional one. Induction hobs are much safer than gas or electric hobs because it is the pan that gets hot rather than the stove. No flames means no accidental fires, and no gas means no gas leaks. The pans used in induction cooking also cool down almost as qucik as they heat up so there's less risk of burning yourself as you serve the food.
Control - Professional chefs have always preferred gas stoves over electric as gas is much more responsive when you turn it up or down. Induction hobs are just as responsive as gas hobs when the temperature is increased or decreased. In fact, induction hobs allow better control with smaller temperature increments and better performance at low temperatures so it's much easier to keep things warm without burning or overcooking them.
Cleaning - The fact that an induction hob doesn't get hot (other than the heat of the pan) means that food residue doesn't burn onto the hob. A spillage just calls for a quick wipe wipe rather than an intense scrub. The surface of an induction hob is completely flat too so it's incredibly easy to wipe over compared to gas or electric hobs with bits that detach and protrude!
How Induction Cooking Works
Induction cooking is one of the safest, most efficient and controllable cooking methods available. Induction cooking is different from conventional cooking technologies like gas or radiant heating elements; heat is generated in the pot or pan on top of the stove and transfered to the contents.
How Induction Cooking Works
- Electrical current is passed through a coil made out of copper
- A high frequency electromagnetic field is created
- An alternating current is induced in the pot or pan - heat is generated
There are two parts to induction cooking:
- The copper coil which, when an electrical current is passed through it, creates an electromagnetic field of energy. The coil is located below the ceramic surface and will not heat up or glow red.
- The pot or pan - this creates the circuit and is heats up transfering the heat to the contents.
Cookware used with induction hobs must therefore have a base which contains some iron content in order for the cooktop to work. Always ensure that you purchase cookware which is labeled as "induction compatible" or "induction ready". A simple way to test if your cookware is induction compatible is to place a magnet on the bottom of the pan, if the magnet sticks your pan will work on an induction cooktop.
With commercial induction, in order to get the maximum efficiency from your hob or range cooker, always ensure that quality induction compatible pots and pans are used as pans with dents or pits will cause hot spots to occur and may cause your induction hob to fail.
Fact: gas hobs are inefficient compared to induction hobs when it comes to cooking.
A comparative test showed a gas burner, rated at 6kW took twice as long to boil water as an electric i-hob induction hob rated at 3kW.
View our Induction Hob vs Gas Hob YouTube Video
Double the time and double the power when using gas - what does that cost mean to your catering business?
1 kWh gas = 3.5p
1 kWh electric = 8.5p
Time taken to boil a pan of water:
Gas hob - 6 mins
Electric induction hob - 3 mins
Gas hob - 6kW
Electric induction hob - 3kW
Gas hob: 6/60 (time taken - 6mins) x 3.5 (cost per kWh) x 6 (kW rating) = 2.1p (total cost)
Electric induction hob: 3/60 (time taken - 3 mins) x 8.5 (cost per kWh) x 3 (kW rating) = 1.275p (total cost)
Cost saving = 0.825p by using induction or put another way 40% off your gas bill.
Factor in automatic pan detection with induction hobs and reduce consumption to only when a pan is actually on the hob.
Gas costs 64.7% more to do the same job.
Switch to induction hobs from gas cooking and start saving on energy bills now. Induction hobs and bespoke induction ranges available from Target Catering Equipment
Induction Hobs In Commercial Kitchens - 8 Reasons To Swap From Gas
Induction hobs have been used for a long time. The first induction hob was put on public display in 1971 in Texas, but, until now, they have only just started to gain in popularity in commercial kitchens within the UK hospitality industry.
8 Reasons To Choose Induction Hobs For Cooking In The Commercial Kitchen
With rocketing energy costs making induction hobs an attractive alternative cooking method to traditional gas and radiant electric plate, and a whole new generation and choice of induction catering equipment being launched over the past few years, induction hobs are gaining in popularity.
- Energy Efficiency - reduced energy consumption due to the high efficiency of induction hobs when compared to gas or electric hot plate cooking therefore it's good for the environment.
- Speed and Controllability - induction hobs are faster than gas to heat a pan as the heat energy is put straight into the pan, it does not rely on inefficient convection conduction or radiant heat sources to transfer heat.
- Hygiene - the surface temperature of induction hobs will not burn on spills so simple to wipe clean the totally flat surface with a damp cloth
- Power - easy rotary controls gives precise power control with no waste energy heating the workplace requiring expensive ventilation systems
- Service and Maintenance - easy with just a filter to be cleaned to keep equipment running safely and automatic safety cut outs on induction hobs should overheat or pans boil dry.
- Safety with no naked flames - fire in the kitchen is not an issue - flambe if you must by using a blow touch to ignite liquer in pans as you would on a gas range.
- Ventilation - Reduced or no ventilation required when cooking with induction hobs
- No Gas Interlock - save on kitchen start up costs as no expensive gas interlock needed
Commercial Induction Hob - 8 Tips For Buying
Thinking of purchasing a commercial induction hob? Check out these 8 points before you buy - make sure you get the correct induction catering equipment for your kitchen.
- How much will your comercial induction hob be used and what for? Light Duty Twin Induction Hob shares 3kW of power across the zones whereas a Heavy Duty Twin Commercial Induction Hob gives 3.5kW output capacity per zone, make sure you purchase an induction hob which gives you the correct amount of power.
- What power supply is available in your kitchen - Light Duty Induction is 240V 1 phase or Heavy Duty Induction is 400V 3 phase
- Ventilation - commercial induction hobs require a reduced amount of ventilation but the positioning of your induction hob is important - make sure that induction air cooling vents are not blocked or sucking in hot air from other pieces of catering equipment. Keep air cooling filters clean.
- Positioning your commercial induction hob - Ceran® safety glass can be broken with sharp points or heavy objects falling onto the glass - make sure that your induction hob is not positioned underneath shelving which contains heavy objects which could fall and break the saftey glass.
- Do you require a portable table top induction hob or inset into a work surface or mobile cooking station? Commercial induction hobs can be both table top or inset, whether they are light duty or heavy duty.
- If you require an inset induction hob do you want it inset into a mobile induction cooking suite? Do you require a sink built in for easy filling and emptying of heavy stockpots?
- Do you need refrigeration below the commercial induction hob? - this will provide easy access to chilled products for cooking.
- Do you want to position an oven close to your commercial induction hob cooking area? A simple electrical convection oven or a programmable cooking centre combination oven can be built into your induction cooking suite alongside your induction hob or induction cooking range to make an efficient cooking area.
By considering these points before you invest in a commercial induction hob for your catering kitchen, you will be able to purchase the ideal induction hob combination to suit your kitchen and your needs.
At Target Catering Equipment we listen to you and design the commercial induction cooking suite to suit your requirements. Have a look at some of the commercial induction cooking station combinations we have already manufactured.
Commercial Cooking Range
The latest bespoke commercial cooking range, manufactured by Target, was designed to fit within a restricted work space and provide an extended worktop surface which could accomodate existing table top equipment.
With two Blue Seal E27M2 ovens positioned under a highly polished French plancha grill and a slide controlled induction cooktop, the commercial cooking range provides a seemless and powerful induction cooking suite.
The French plancha grill has precise, rotary temperature control and the slide controlled induction hob has a graduated temperature cooking surface which is ideal for multiple small pan use.
As the induction cooktop is set flush with the stainless steel top, the whole surface is also able to be used for food preparation when not being used for cooking.
With the commercial cooking range set on castors, the suite can be easily moved providing easy access for cleaning behind.
For further information or to discuss your commercial cooking range design, please call 01452 410447
Induction Stock Pot Cooker
According to Auguste Escoffier in his 1907 publication A Guide to Modern Cookery "... stock is everything in cooking ... Without it, nothing can be done."
Target's induction stock pot cooker is designed for use in the busiest of commercial kitchens and makes the production of stock effortless whilst at the same time being energy efficient and having reduced ventilation requirements.
Available as either a 3kW 1Phase unit or a 5kW 3Phase unit the cooker consists of a fully welded stainless steel housing. A robust rotary control knob allows for the easy control of temperature settings in order to bring stock quickly to a rolling boil or reduce temperature to obtain a gentle simmer.
The 5kW induction stock pot range is able to accomodate stock pots up to 40cm, 47 litres with the 3kW cooker being suitable for stock pots up to 36cm, 24 litres.
For further information please call 01452 410447.
Professional Induction Stove With Plancha Grill
Target's bespoke, professional induction stove incorporates 4 x 3.5kW heavy duty, commercial induction hobs and a French style plancha grill, with gastronorm tray racks and Blue Seal convection oven under.
The plancha grill provides an even and ultra fast cooking area which ensures consistent results, and whilst reducing pan usage when being used for direct product searing and sealing, it can also be used for small pan cooking. The induction hobs provide a controllable, clean and energy efficient cooktop, offering a seemless cooking suite which will slot easliy into the main cookline of any busy commercial kitchen. With easy, rotary temperature control the heavy, polished stainless steel hot plate can be used like a traditional solid top with heat radiating from the centre of the grill plate providing a graduated heat cooking surface.
Matched with both light duty and heavy duty induction hobs, the French style plancha is ideal. With programmable Blue Seal Turbofan oven and extra storage space under, along with extra work space, this induction cooking range with plancha grill provides everything neatly together in one cooking station.
Target's bespoke induction ranges are designed and manufactured to suit your requirements and can be produced as either a wall or an island induction cooking suite.
For further induction range cooker combinations please visit our shop or call 01452 410447.
Stainless Steel Bakers' Table
Target specialise in the design and manufacture of large, stainless steel bakers' tables. Made from both stainless steel or wood block tops, the large mobile or static tables are ideal for both production batch work and baking lessons.
With built in induction hobs and inset sinks of different sizes, these bakers' tables are ideal for use in artisan bakeries and cookery schools.
When not in use the induction hob tops can be used as a preparation or kneading area adding an additional workspace for busy bakeries.
For further bakers' table information please call 01452 410447.
Induction Wok Cooker Range
Target's Induction Wok Cooker Range, designed as the energy efficient replacement to traditional gas wok cooker ranges used in so many Chinese, Thai and Indian commercial kitchens.
As strict gas safety regulations enforce compliance in the catering industry, costs to upgrade and improve gas equipment and ventilation systems can far outweigh the benefits.
Target's Induction Wok Cooker Range, is just as fast as and more controllable than the traditional gas wok range, it also produces little waste heat. There is also no need for the litres of water, which are continuously circulated on the top of the gas wok ranges, just to keep the cooker cool and clean.
The ventilation requirements, with the Induction Wok Range Cooker, are minimal as there is little waste heat.
You have to try it to believe it, so call 01452 410447 to arrange an induction cooking trial in Target Catering's demonstration kitchen.