A new generation of small “speed-cook” ovens is on the market, using various combinations of heat transfer including microwaves, convection blowers, hot air impingement and infrared browning elements. They’re creating an entire, new oven category.
In years past, smaller fast-cook ovens found niche markets in kiosks, bowling alleys and snack shops. Today, multi-heat-source ovens have come of age and now help sandwich chains and even fine-dining restaurants cook and reheat menu items. Some larger, already fast ovens are getting even faster and can also be classified as speed-cook ovens.
Combi & conveyor ovens speed up
Large combi ovens cook faster than conventional, deck and convection ovens, using super-heated steam at temperatures well over 212°F. Electrolux Professional, Inc. has accelerated cooking further by adding four powerful magnetrons to its new air-o-speed 10-pan electric combi model. Unlike smaller speed-cook ovens, this one rapidly cooks or reheats up to 10 full steamer pans of cook-chill food. Plus, the design allows use of metal pans with microwaves.
Conveyor ovens with impinger technology already cook pretty fast, but Lincoln’s FastBake impingement technology makes its Impinger I and Low Profile Ovens even faster, more energy efficient and productive. FastBake is an airflow management system that can increase the production capacity of 32-inch (belt) by 40-inch (chamber) ovens by 15 to 30 percent and retrofit on existing impinger models.
Sample before you spec
Always test cook the products you plan to prepare before purchasing the appliance. Does the oven deliver the desired quality and consistency? What about volume? Even if these ovens cook in half the time, they may handle only 10 to 25 percent of the volume of conventional ovens.