Thursday, 2 March 2017

Ovens & Cookers Feature: SLTN March 16th 2017


Please attribute any quotes on this information to Kris Brearley, Sales Director, R H Hall

How important is it to commercial kitchens that cookers and ovens operate at their best at all times? What impact can a temperamental/unreliable cooker or oven unit have on service?

An oven is a vital piece of equipment in any kitchen, whether it is part of a cooking range or a stand-alone model, it has to be a versatile and flexible workhorse able to make light work of the most demanding and varied dishes and be able to respond to the ongoing changing demands that come with any professional commercial kitchen. If this vital piece of kit cannot be relied upon, it can have serious consequences for any menu offering – particularly if it breaks down before or during a busy service.

What steps can operators take to best avoid inconvenient breakdowns?

Regular maintenance and cleaning will help to prolong the life of your oven, so it is very important that all staff are aware and capable of performing essential daily tasks. Most ovens should come with at least a 1 year On Site manufacturer Warranty as standard, but operators should also consider on-going maintenance contracts to ensure their equipment is operating at its peak.

What are the key considerations when replacing or upgrading a cooker/oven unit?

Operators should consider their equipment needs in line with current and future menu requirements, numbers and times/peaks in service – for example, it maybe that two smaller, versatile ovens that can adapt to changing service needs are better than investing in one large unit or that for example, one larger bake-off oven could cover a breakfast offering by itself and then bake-off products, such as baguettes, ready to be filled for the lunch service.
Space and installation aspects are also key considerations. Consider the footprint of some ovens in comparison to their potential output and whether products can be stacked, one on top of the other. Chefs can easily switch between one or two ovens depending on demand, which will give them great flexibility and potentially added profits when operating to full capacity, off-setting initial outlays. Alternatively a secondary smaller back-up oven such as the Smeg ALFA43XUK could be installed to help cater for peaks – or a microwave added for speed. There are a huge range of options to suit and fulfil all needs, whilst remaining cost effective.

How important is staff training both in terms of optimum use and safety?

Understanding is still the key to success with any cooking. To maximise usage of an oven effectively, I think it is paramount that all caterers are educated as to the full potential of their unit. With basic training some units are able to be easily operated by any user. Features such as pre-programmable touchpads or menu development software, create an easy solution for consistent results.
We recommend that the correct training of staff on how to use and look after the equipment in the first instance will definitely help the life span of any equipment. In addition, simple regular low cost maintenance and cleaning will keep it in peak health and condition.
At RH Hall we train our distributors to be able to offer the best advice and training to the end user. Such advice as to when and how to clean the oven, service interval recommendations and the best use of the oven are just part of the training given to customers. We also have an extensive facility at our HQ fitted out with all the very latest equipment so clients and distributors can see and operate a number of microwaves in addition to a very wide range of kitchen equipment.

Website for further information:

For more information, please visit
Emma Smith
01296 663400

R H Hall, Hallco House, Beacon Court, Pitstone Green Business Park, Pitstone, Beds, LU7 9GY
T: 01296 663400 F: 01296 663401 E: W:

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