Author Archives: Carlisha Carr

Looking to Create a Green Kitchen? Buying ENERGY STAR® is the First Step

The restaurant industry is ever changing and being impacted by trends. A more popular trend that is sweeping business’ of all types is the effort to be more environmentally friendly. Due to the popularity, manufacturers are producing restaurant equipment that are efficient enough to qualify for an ENERGY STAR® rating. Some restaurant owners are slow or unwilling to buy ENERGY STAR® rated products due to the higher costs, but the return on investment is worth it in comparison to conventional food service equipment. There are many benefits to buying ENERGY STAR® and there are eight types of commercial equipment that can qualify for the rating. Below are the benefits and advantages to buying ENERGY STAR® and how they can help achieve a green kitchen.

What You Save When You Buy ENERGY STAR®

Energy

Facilities with commercial kitchens use approximately 250 MBTU/sq.ft.—roughly 2.5 times more energy per square foot than other commercial buildings. Outfitting an entire kitchen with a suite of ENERGY STAR® qualified equipment could save operators about 285 MBTU/year annually.

Money

ENERGY STAR® qualified products could cost as much as 50 percent less than their conventional counterparts. A kitchen using all ENERGY STAR® qualified equipment can save operators approximately $2500 per year versus traditional kitchens.

Water

ENERGY STAR® qualified steam cookers, dishwashers, and ice machines are up to 90% more water efficient than non-qualified equipment.

Comfort

Equipment that carries the ENERGY STAR® qualified rating helps eliminate excess heat and noise generated by inefficient appliances.

 

Products that Can Qualify for an ENERGY STAR® Rating

The follow product categories have equipment that can qualify for an ENERGY STAR® rating. Also listed are the benefits and possible savings if you choose to buy ENERGY STAR® rated products.

675-002Refrigeration

Refrigerators & Freezers

ENERGY STAR® qualified commercial refrigerators and freezers are more efficient because they are designed with components like ECM evaporators and condenser fan motors, hot gas anti-sweat heaters or high efficiency compressors, which will significantly reduce energy consumption and utility bills. These units feature average energy savings of around 35% to 45%. Each ENERGY STAR® refrigerator or freezer could potentially save you well over $1,000 in utility costs throughout the unit’s life cycle, making the full cost of ownership much lower than standard units.

Ice Machines

ENERGY STAR® commercial ice machines include air-cooled models that are modular, self-contained or remote condensing. Batch-type ice makers save on average about 1,200 kWh or $130 per year in electricity bill costs. They are on average 15% more energy efficient and 23% more water efficient than standard models. These units can save you an average of $40 per year and 6,300 gallons per year due to reduced water usage. Continuous-type ice makers are on average 15% more energy efficient than standard models. These units can save you, on average, about 1500kWh or $160 per year on utility bills.

Cooking Equipment

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On average, ENERGY STAR® qualified ovens are 20% more energy-efficient than standard models.

Fryers

ENERGY STAR® fryers offer shorter cook times, faster temperature recovery, and ultimately higher pound-per-hour production rates, through advanced burner and heat exchanger designs. Qualified models are up to 30% more energy efficient on standard sizes. This equates to savings of $100 on an electric fryer and $470 on a gas fryer. A large vat fryer qualifies when it is 35% more energy efficient than non-qualified items. This equates to savings of $170 on an electric fryer and $500 on a gas fryer annually.

Steamers

ENERGY STAR® qualified steamers have a sealed cooking cavity that consumes a fraction of the energy and water required by traditional open systems. The average ENERGY STAR® commercial steamer is 60% more energy efficient than a standard model! This can save you $1,000 for water and sewer costs annually, and $1,100 to $1,200 in gas or electricity annually.

Griddles515-173

Commercial griddles with the ENERGY STAR® label are 10% more energy efficient than standard models. This equates to $120 a year or $1,100 for the lifetime of the griddle on gas models and $100 per year or $1,200 for the life of the griddle on electric models.

Holding and Transport Cabinets

ENERGY STAR® warming and holding equipment feature improved insulation, so heat stays in the cabinet and out of the kitchen. An insulated ENERGY STAR® holding cabinet uses about half the energy consumed by an uninsulated cabinet. Overall, qualified units boast approximately 70% better energy efficiency. On average, certified models can save $300 per year for electricity, or over $2,800 over the product lifetime.

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Sanitation

Dishwashers

Commercial dishwashers can be one of the most expensive units in your kitchen, because they utilize a lot of energy in a small amount of time. Dishwashers that have earned the ENERGY STAR® label are on average 40% more energy efficient and 40% more water efficient than standard models. Qualified models must meet maximum water consumption requirements during the final rinse, and use less energy while idling between wash cycles. Using an ENERGY STAR® qualified dishwasher can save you $720 annually on electricity, and $300 annually on water

Still Have Questions?

We understand that you may have more questions before you are ready to purchase ENERGY STAR® rated equipment. Our helpful product consultants are here to ensure that the buying process is a breeze and can point you to the equipment that adhere to the ENERGY STAR® guidelines. Be sure to visit Energystar.gov to see if any of your current equipment qualify and for more in depth information. Also be sure to check out our website for more than 400 products that have an ENERGY STAR® rating.

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Wax Paper vs. Parchment Paper: What’s the Difference?

It may or may not be surprising that some working in foodservice industry, professionally or just for fun, have trouble deciding when to use wax paper vs. parchment paper. Their similar make-up and appearance could cause you to choose the wrong one and leave your product tasting not quite like you want it.  The differences between the two papers are vital to note when deciding what to use while cooking or baking. Before we talk about what paper is best depending on application, let’s first look at the makeup and how it impacts what you can use it for.

Wax Paper

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Tablecraft Training – Example of using wax paper in presentations.

Wax paper, also known as paraffin, is defined as paper that has been infused with wax to ensure it is water and grease proof.  Due to the moisture resistant make-up, wax paper is perfect for laying on countertops during food preparation. Although it can be used as a substitute for parchment paper, wax paper should never be put in the oven. The low heat-resistance and wax coating could cause for the paper to melt and even catch fire. Wax paper can be used for wrapping foods to help maintain their moisture and keep your product from drying out. A new trend in the foodservice industry is using wax paper in the presentation when the food is being served. This helps contain messes and is easier for your customers to throw away.

Parchment Paper

Parchment paper is a little bit more expensive than wax paper, but it can be used in more applications. Grease and moisture resistant, parchment paper is a cellulose-based paper. The process of creating parchment paper causes it to have a high heat-resistance and be non-stick. Parchment paper, unlike wax paper, can be put in the oven and is more beneficial to line pans with instead of the standard cooking spray. Utilizing parchment paper can also allow for an easier clean-up and lessen the risk of contamination of food from touching the pan or baking sheet. Parchment paper is very popular in bakeries because of its versatility to be able to be placed in multiple types of baking pans and sheets.

 

Which is Best for What?

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Image from MarthaStewart.com

As explained above, the two may look and even feel the same, but the applications they can be used for are quite different. Parchment paper and wax paper can both be beneficial in your kitchen, but make sure you are using the correct one before you have cookies that come out tasting like crayons!  Below is a list of the most common things that could come up in your kitchen and which paper is most appropriate for each.

Wax Paper

  • Preparing doughs for pizza, cookies, etc.
  • Storing leftover dough
  • Wrapping or storing foods
  • Presentation of meals
  • Low-heat resistant
  • CANNOT be put in the oven

Parchment Paper

  • Baking and cooking
  • Can be used to line pans, baking sheets, etc.
  • Wrapping or storing foods
  • Easy clean up
  • High-heat resistant
  • CAN be put in the oven

 

Shop Central for Bakery Supplies and More!

Are you in need of paper liners and such to complete your bakery? Our knowledgeable product consultants can help guide you through the process of choosing different linings and also ensure you are buying the correct ones. Be sure to check out our website to find all your foodservice needs to keep your kitchen producing fresh cookies and other baked goods! Call us at 800-215-9293 for more information about all of our products.

 

Featured image attributed to Tracy Ducasse  from Flickr.com

Information and uses of Wax and Parhment paper from MarthaStewart.com

Foodservice News Week in Brief: April 10

Foodservice News

Looking for the latest foodservice news? Check out the latest news stories, plus this week’s blog and promotions from Central for the week of April 6 through April 10!

  1. Nation’s Restaurant News: Starbucks expands college tuition program
  2. Eater: Where to Eat at MLB Stadiums in 2015 
  3. Foodbeast: These 6 Food Trends Are Already Taking Over 2015
  4. Buzzfeed: Taco Bell Is Going To Start A Delivery Service Because, Y’know, Millennials
  5. Nation’s Restaurant News: Report: Industry may be entering new cycle of growth
  6. Huffington Post: IKEA Is Officially Serving Vegan Meatballs
  7. Forbes: Listeria In Sabra Hummus Prompts Latest Food Safety Recall
  8. Eater: Coffee Shops Get Fizzy With Artisanal Carbonated Tea
  9. Nation’s Restaurant News: Papa John’s rolls out digital tool to split bills
  10. Forbes: World Health Day 2015: How Scientists Track Food Poisoning

Central’s Blog Posts

Current Promotions

Visit CentralRestaurant.com to view these promotions!

Spring Bake KitchenAid® Mixer Contest!springbake-wallpost

If you’re feeling lucky and want to enter (who wouldn’t want to?), simply click here. From there, you’ll fill out a short entry form. The contest will run from March 18 and ends on April 19 at 11:59 p.m. The lucky winner will be notified after the contest ends.

March Catalog Available Now!

Our March 2015 Catalog is available! Click here to request your FREE catalog!

Manitowoc Ice

Find the lowest prices and free shipping on America’s #1 ice machine. Plus Central has thousands of Manitowoc units in stock for same day shipping when ordered by 5 p.m. EST. Shop now!

15% Off Rubbermaid

Save 15% on all Rubbermaid. Plus many items are in stock and ready to ship to you today when an order is placed by 5 p.m. EST. Shop now!

Pitco Free Shipping

Get the lowest prices and free shipping on Pitco fryers & systems, rethermalizers, past a cookers and more. Shop now!

10% Off Popular Outdoor Furniture

Outdoor dining season is almost here. Are you ready? Choose options from our Central Exclusive line or BFM seating. Shop now!

30% Off Cutlery

Price Cut! Save over 30% on Central Exclusive economy cutlery. In stock for free same-day shipping if the order is placed by 5 p.m. EST. Shop now!

To keep up with the latest, subscribe to Central’s email list and get exclusive benefits such as discounts, new product alerts and early access to our clearance list. Don’t forget to sign up and request your free copy of our latest catalog!

Like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and Instagram, or recommend us on Google+ for other daily foodservice news throughout the week. Also, be sure to check out our Pinterest boards and watch videos on our YouTube.

Vulcan Countertop Convection Ovens

Busy kitchens can be overwhelming, but the space your equipment takes up doesn’t have to be. If you are in the market for a convection oven that saves space without sacrificing quality, check out the Vulcan countertop convection ovens.

Why Vulcan Convection Ovens?

Half-Size Flexibility

The half-size convection ovens provide versatile performance and produce evenly cooked product of all varieties. The space-saving ovens are available in gas or electric options depending of your foodservice establishment’s needs. With the ability to be set on the countertop or on adjustable stainless steel legs, these ovens have the flexibility to benefit all types of kitchens.

The gas and electric models feature a stainless steel front, sides, top and rear enclosure panels. This ensures the exterior is corrosion and rust resistant allowing for a longer life. The double pane windows on the door make it is easy to view your product without having to open the door and releasing excess heat into your kitchen. When you do have to open the door to take out your product, the door handle will be cool to the touch.  While taking out product, there is a rapid cool down switch for safety precautions.

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Both model’s convection oven interiors have porcelain enamel to protect from physical and chemical damage. The glossy finish of the porcelain is smooth and allows for high-temperature applications while being abrasion resistant. Included for the oven are nine position nickel plated rack guides and five nickel plated racks.  The ovens solid state controls range up to 500°F to accommondate a variety or product and perform multiple applications from baking, cooking, roasting and more! Utilize this kitchen equipment worry-free with a 60 minute timer that features a continuous buzzer to avoid overcooking. The trouble-free operation and durability of the Vulcan convection ovens are beneficial to any foodservice establishment.

Shop Central

Want to know more about Vulcan counterop convection ovens? Our electric and gas product pages have specifications sheets linked to them for more information. If you have more questions, our helpful product consultants can offer advice and guide you through the buying process. Visit our website at Centralrestaurant.com or call 800-215-9293.

 

Featured image from Vulcan’s Website.

Foodservice Industry News Week in Brief: March 2

Foodservice News

Looking for the latest foodservice news? Check out the latest news stories, plus this week’s blog and promotions from Central for the week of March 2 through March 6!

  1. FoodBeast: Taco Bell Testing Cap’n Crunch Donut Holes Stuffed with Milk Icing
  2. Eater: 11 Things Millennials Want, According to Giant Food Companies
  3. HuffingtonPost: The 10 Most Instagrammed Foods, in Emoji Form
  4. Business Insider: A grocery chain no one talks about is becoming Whole Foods’ biggest threat
  5. Buzzfeed: 23 Delicious Chicago Eats That Are Worth Every Penny
  6. Foodbeast: These Major Restaurants Have Secret Menus For Dogs
  7. Buzzfeed: 15 Minty Dessert Recipes To Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth
  8. Nation’s Restuarant News: Top 5 ethnic food trends for 2015
  9. Foodbeast: Churro Dogs Are The Only Ballpark Food That Matters Right Now
  10. Upworthy: A customer walked into his pizza shop and changed Philadelphia with $1 and a single Post-it note.

Central’s Blog Posts

Current Promotions

Visit CentralRestaurant.com to view these promotions!

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January Catalog Available Now!

Our January 2015 Catalog is available! Click here to request your FREE catalog!

Central Exclusive

Full line of Central Exclusive cooking and refrigeration products have great pricing and features. Plus they are in stock for free same-day shopping if an order is placed by 5 p.m. EST. Shop now!

Need it Fast?

Central has several items in stock that qualify for free same-day shipping if the order is placed by 5 p.m. EST. Shop now!

World Tableware

Up to 20% off dinnerware and up to 35% off flatware! Shop now!

Libbey

Up to 15% off glassware! Hundreds of items in stock and ready for same-day shipping. Shop now!

Central Edge

Get a free night curtain & extended warranty on our Structural Concepts CO47R Oasis refrigerated self-service merchandiser. Shop now!

To keep up with the latest, subscribe to Central’s email list and get exclusive benefits such as discounts, new product alerts and early access to our clearance list. Don’t forget to sign up and request your free copy of our latest catalog!

Like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and Instagram, or recommend us on Google+ for other daily foodservice news throughout the week. Also, be sure to check out our Pinterest boards and watch videos on our YouTube.

Make Breakfast Easy with These Equipment Essentials

Today marks the start of National School Breakfast week! This week gives schools the opportunity to promote eating a healthy breakfast for a successful day inside and out of the classroom. Breakfast is important for people of all ages and we have the right equipment to ensure you are providing students with the nutrition they need! Below are some highlighted products that would be beneficial for any kitchen to have for serving breakfast.
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Nemco Easy Wedger

Fruits make a great addition to any balanced breakfast. The Nemco Easy Wedger is a great product for consistent slices of fruits, tomatoes, potatoes and more. This product allows you to work fast without bruising or damage to the food. The centering rod acts as a guide for even, uniform wedges. The sturdy base is great for even the toughest foodservice demands. The Nemco Easy Wedger is available in 4,6,8 and 10 sections to suit your kitchen’s needs.

Star High Volume Conveyor Toaster 665-A90

Looking for a product that takes up little space with high production? The Star High Volume Conveyor Toaster is exactly that! Taking up only 18-1/2” of counter space, this toaster produces up to 1,300 slices per hour. This model’s forced convection system allows it to be placed against a wall. Along with being a space safer, this toaster reduces electricity consumption by 75%.  Included with this toaster is variable speed and top/bottom heat control for perfect color and texture of breads, bagels and more.

Cambro Food Bars 250-351_2

Self-serve can be an important aspect of breakfast and your kitchen needs a product that will be durable and reliable enough for even big crowds. Cambro Food Bars versatility and polyethylene construction have the strength for just that. The insulation on this model is thick foamed-in-place polyurethane to ensure food temperatures are being maintained. This product has swivel casters for easy mobility, but comes with brakes to make sure it is secure when serving food.

True® Milk Coolers675-191_3

The calcium in milk plays a vital role in building strong bones and teeth. Being a staple of breakfast, especially in schools, a True® Milk Cooler ensures your product is being held at the proper temperatures while being energy efficient. The interior, interior floor, drop front door and flip-up top lid are stainless steel for added durability. These milk coolers also have 28 exterior color options to show your school pride or just add a little personalization.

Shop Central

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day and we have you covered on any equipment or supplies you need. Check out our website for our entire line of products for every meal.  There is also a School Homeroom tab that features hand-selected products organized to ensure the buying process is painless. For more information, call our help product consultants at 800-215-9293.

 

Featured image courtesy of Meals4kids.org.