WITH margins tight across the licensed trade, acquiring and properly maintaining the right equipment and appliances is absolutely essential.
And a commercial fryer is, for many outlets, one of those ‘must-have’ pieces of kit that is pressed into action on a daily basis.
With so much expected of them, it’s important that chefs and licensees ensure their fryers are consistently operating at the top level.
Choosing the right model is obviously the first priority.
And there are several factors licensees should consider, according to Shaune Hall, product development chef at Falcon Foodservice Equipment.
“Mistakes are made when caterers choose a fryer that is unsuitable for their needs,” said Hall.
“With so many fryers on the market, it’s important to get sound advice.
“Ask key questions such as: what is the demand for fried food? Duration of the serving times? What types of fried food are on the menu? Are there allergen-free offerings?
“With these questions answered, operators can be confident in their decision of purchasing a fryer that performs well and is sufficient for their menu requirements.”
Once a model has been chosen, it’s essential the appliance is properly maintained.
The oil in any fryer should be checked regularly to ensure it is clean, free of debris and frying properly, said Hall, with the oil replaced every few days.
While the lifespan of a fryer is difficult to determine, it will be heavily influenced by its usage; what is it being used to cook? How much and how often?
Hall said: “It is fair to say that there are fryers in the field lasting beyond ten years.
“However, I would recommend obtaining an assessment report from the maintenance and service provider when the unit is serviced.
“This will provide evidence that the unit is still safe to operate and in line with efficiencies and good practice.”
Certain units have been designed to make the changing of oil easier.
Mark Hogan, commercial director of Foodservice Equipment Marketing (FEM), said innovations such as ‘smart oil management’ – which allows operators to empty and refill fryers at the push of a button – can increase oil yields by 10% and even be managed remotely.
“It eliminates the slip and burn hazards associated with oil handling, while reducing costs and increasing profits,” said Hogan.