In a commercial kitchen setting, food safety and reducing food wastage are among the top priorities. One of the most significant ways to ensure that both of these aspects are dealt with quickly and effectively is to invest in the right cooling equipment.
With this in mind, many commercial kitchen owners often resort to acquiring blast chillers to keep food within safe cooling ranges. Some people however still regard these potent freezers as a “nice to have” rather than a necessity.
In reality, these nifty pieces of equipment have a bunch of excellent benefits that add considerable value to any kitchen.
What Exactly is a Blast Chiller?
Blast chillers are commonly referred to as flash freezers and, as the name suggests, their main purpose is to lower the food temperature quicker than putting it in a regular freezer. Since most models are designed with multiple shelves, it’s super easy to freeze multiple types of foods and drinks all at once, without food items touching each other.
A blast chiller is also an excellent way to chill freshly made desserts, ice creams, and sorbets which makes it possible to have these items ready in time for the dinner service. Therefore, these dishes can be made a few hours before rather than the night before.
How Do Blast Chillers Work?
The working process of a blast chiller is not as complex as you’d think. An industrial fan blows chilled air directly over the food or drinks, instantly cooling it. While performing a similar function in a standard freezer often creates ice crystals around the food item, this isn’t the case with a blast chiller.
By being able to cool the food over and around the product, the actual food isn’t frozen. This means there’s no chance of the food being soggy once it’s defrosted or cooked.
Every Commercial Kitchen Should Have a Blast Freezer
No matter how big or small your commercial kitchen is, chances are you will definitely benefit from even a small blast chiller. We’ve compiled a few of the top ways in which your kitchen will benefit from a flash freezer.
Prevents Bacterial Growth
Bacteria growth is a major concern in any kitchen and improper freezing or refrigeration increases the risk of foodborne illnesses. Keep in mind that food stored in a freezer that is constantly being opened and closed is equally at risk of developing bacteria such as E. coli and Staphylococcus.
A blast chiller’s ability to speedily lower food temperatures ensures that food stays cool enough to prevent bacteria growth. Since blast chillers are designed to bring your product’s core temperature down to 5° or less in about 90 minutes, you can be sure that there’s no dangerous bacteria growth taking place under the surface.
Maintains Food Quality
Have you ever noticed how your food changes its flavor the longer you leave it out at room temperature? This happens as a result of oxidation and other chemical reactions causing the food particles to break down.
The quick process of a blast chiller protects against this. Since rapid cooling minimizes loss through evaporation and decreases the formation of ice crystals on and in the food, your food will retain its taste and texture for longer.
Allows for Buying in Bulk
Buying fresh food is a large part of any kitchen owner’s daily or weekly duties. This can be quite time-consuming, especially if you’re looking for food that’s out of season but also a top seller on your menu.
Investing in a blast chiller ensures you can take advantage of the discounts offered for buying fresh produce in bulk. This also means that you’ll have access to quality foods long after they’re out of season.
Knowing that your blast chiller will keep your produce and frozen foods fresh for longer will simplify your kitchen ordering process and prevent you from having to amend your menu because you don’t have certain items available.
Being able to freeze or cool your food at a considerably faster rate means that your kitchen staff will have more flexibility with food preparation. Dishes can be prepared long in advance and then safely stored and frozen in the blast chiller. Since the food doesn’t ice up, it means that the dish can be used when needed, without the flavor deteriorating over time.
This type of flexibility will enable your kitchen staff to focus on tasks and improve workflows.
Reduce Food Waste
A pet peeve in any kitchen is the amount of food and fresh produce that gets thrown away. In addition to produce not being kept at the right temperatures, food can also deteriorate from freezer burn. Opting for a blast chiller will reduce the amount of food wastage, which in turn means less wasted money.
If you’ve been looking for the best way to increase efficiency and reduce food waste around your commercial kitchen, a blast chiller is the solution you’ve been waiting for. Since blast chillers are available in a range of different sizes, you’re guaranteed to find the right model best suited to your unique kitchen.