Combi ovens can do everything. A single rational combi oven can do the functions of a convection oven, steamer, smoker, and even a dehydrator.
A combi takes out the guesswork in exact preparation and menu execution. In many ways, it is a technology-driven gadget. Savvy business owners know they can maintain a consistent product in a tiny footprint with this multi-use equipment.
To maximise this unit, you need to provide initial training for your staff. Once you have established your menus and recipes, you can program the unit. It becomes a labour saver helping you realise significant ROIs.
Before you invest in a combi oven, first look at the critical points discussed in this article. It will help you know what to look for.
- Water Quality
When it comes to combis and filter systems, it is risky to apply a one-size-fits-all approach. In some cases, owners operate their combi utilising the same filtration system they use on their steam. Even worse, some do not realise they will need a water filter for their combi.
Bear in mind that water can have a significant effect on your rational combi oven. A good starting point is to request your water filtration provider to test the water quality of your restaurant, so you know what type of filtration system your combi oven will require. Many water utilities provide a water quality report. But these data are not as accurate as measuring the water quality at your specific location.
- Correct installation and ventilation
You need to hire certified installers for your new combi oven. They will connect the combi to water filtration systems and drains and install an electric or gas connection. A majority of issues in combi ovens stem from improper installation.
Even seemingly simple aspects such as water hook up can have challenges. Combi’s require one connection for filtered water to form steam and a second one to condense the steam back to water to be drained safely. Make sure you are not utilising expensive filter water for both hoses.
Adequate ventilation is another critical aspect. For example, a gas boiler combi has three vents. One is for gas exhaust, one for the boiler system and another for the oven cavity steam. You need to ensure your hood has enough depth to contain all the steam rising out from the door if it is opened mid-cycle.
Many companies have more than one cleaning program. It ranges from a quick clean without detergents to thorough washing and drying cycles that may be essential after slow cooking protein ingredients. Check the specs sheet and make sure automatic cleaning is included. Some manufacturers will provide an a-la-carte menu wherein you can choose the features of your combi.
Don’t veer away from the suggested cleaning chemicals recommended by your manufacturer. Crossmatching chemicals from various manufacturers can ruin your oven. Each maker’s cleaning cycles are designed differently. It is best to use the recommended cleaning solution. Otherwise, you could clog up and compromise your investment.
Be sure to train your team before and after the arrival of the new combi. The training can come from the manufacturer or the dealer. It is crucial that your team maximises the combi oven’s abilities and that it receives proper care and maintenance.
Everyone who will interact with the oven, from the chef to the cleaner, must be included in the training. Inadequate training can have costly repercussions. An expensive combi may end up being underutilised, or cleaning cycles will be done wrong.