Cook-Chill Myths Busted
You might be wondering what the Cook-Chill hype is all about, given that more and more foodservice businesses are getting involved in this technology.The good news is that Cook-Chill is very simple.
It’s a controlled system of advanced food preparation designed to provide more flexibility in foodservice. The technique involves the full cooking of food, followed by rapid chilling and storage at controlled temperatures before regenerating before service.
It’s completely safe, and maintains food quality, flavour, nutritional value and appearance.
Catering establishments of all sizes and types now benefit from using Cook-Chill systems.
So if your business is serving regular hot meals you almost certainly will benefit.
Take a look at our guide to Cook-Chill below, dispelling many popular myths about the technology.
Cook-Chill Myth 1 - Cook-Chill is Dangerous Because the Equipment is Difficult to Use.
There is no known case of someone suffering from or dying as a result of eating a properly prepared Cook-Chill meal. Unfortunately, many people have suffered food poisoning and have died from eating conventionally produced food that has not been prepared or stored properly before re-heating.
Operating a Williams blast chiller is as simple as 1-2-3. Using three buttons or the food core temperature probe you can operate a blast chill or freeze cycle easily. The probe ensures that the core temperature for the product has been reached, meaning peace of mind for you. Our equipment is also HACCP compliant for your customers’ safety.
Cook-Chill Myth 2 - The Equipment Needed is Large and Expensive
Businesses such as contract caterers or local authorities may need expensive equipment to blast chill. This is because they need to produce high volumes of food. However this is not the case for small to medium establishments. Many of these caterers will already have suitable ovens and storage facilities, so they will only need to acquire a blast chiller.
Whilst the initial outlay can seem daunting the potential revenue generated by blast chilling can make a huge difference to your business output. You can maximise the meal output on quieter days meaning there is no disruption to service at busier times. It allows you to be much more organised and helps you focus on other important issues such as presentation and customer service.
Williams offer a complete range of reach-in cabinet blast chillers in various sizes to suit your Cook-Chill system perfectly. Using blast chillers in small operations can increase the number of covers you can complete with your existing kit. We’ve even designed a small under counter blast chiller with a capacity of 10kg to snugly fit under any standard counter top. Similarly, you can purchase larger models to future-proof your business.
Whichever model you choose, all Williams units fit in the same compact footprint and you can expect high standards of quality throughout the range.
Cook-Chill Myth 3 - I Will Need Yet More Equipment to Store the Food I’ve Chilled.
This is not the case as when the blast cycle has finished the unit automatically enters storage mode negating the need for a separate refrigerator or freezer.
It’s also important to remember that putting hot food straight into a standard fridge is dangerous, unhygienic and will damage the refrigeration system eventually. The food will not chill down quick enough meaning bacteria will form, and hot air from the product with cause condensation and ice build up on the evaporator.
Cook-Chill Myth 4 - It’s an Insult to the Skill of the Professional Caterer.
Cook-Chill gives you more time to utilise your skills more effectively than any other method.
Instead of spending valuable time on mundane tasks, the professional caterer can use that time to improve presentation, create new dishes and menus, and attend to all other things that make it a successful business. Time for menu expansion means that you can explore different styles and cuisines that you may not have had time for previously, meaning more choice for your customers.
It’s also worth pointing out that using a blast chiller can help you reduce food wastage, saving you money and increasing your green credentials. Portions can be made up precisely and only the meals ordered will be regenerated. This means little or no wastage for you.
Cook-Chill Myth 5 - Cook-Chill is Only for Mass Catering Operations.
This myth is based upon the idea that blast chilling equipment is heavy, cumbersome and unsuitable for smaller kitchens. Typically Blast Chillers are associated with large establishments with plenty of space. However Williams blast chillers are suitable for even the smallest kitchens. Our under counter WBC10 snugly fits under any standard counter tops, meaning even small kitchens can operate a Cook-Chill operation.