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Care home kitchen cock-a-hoop after abandoning gas appliances during upgrade

Danny Bree head chef Hartwood House Cinnamon Care Collection

A care home in the New Forest has said its residents are seeing the culinary fruits of its decision to strip traditional gas appliances from its kitchen in favour of the latest multifunctional appliances.

Hartwood House in Lyndhurst, which is part of the Cinnamon Care Collection, provides its 50 residents with two separate three-course meals a day for each course, as well as alternatives for any dietary requirements.

During a recent refurbishment, it opted to replace conventional kitchen equipment with modern multifunctional appliances from Rational.

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“Our old combi oven was constantly letting us down,” explained head chef Danny Bree (pictured). “It would keep clogging with limescale, and half the time it couldn’t produce steam. We needed to modernise.”

The home selected an electric SelfCookingCenter 101e and a twin-pan VarioCookingCenter 112+ with pressure cooking and augmented with the optional VitroCeran hotplate.

Mr Bree said the new equipment has already had noticeable effects on how the kitchen at Hartwood House operates.

“The amount of time we need for preparation has reduced dramatically. Overall cooking times are much quicker too, and we’ve been able to add new dishes to the menu with the new cooking processes open to us.”

The ability to use the VarioCookingCenter as a pressure cooker has opened up a range of new possibilities for the kitchen.

“We’ve been able to use some really tasty cuts of meat such as shin of beef and oxtail, it really brings out the tenderness that conventional appliances take a long time to achieve. We can make a delicious stew with slow cooked oxtail, the residents love it.”

And the addition of a hotplate on the VCC has also increased its capabilities. “It’s a very useful extra. For example we use it to hold sauces once they’re done, which allows us to continue using the two pans. It all helps to keep things running smoothly,” said Mr Bree.

Mr Bree said that Hartwood House has now eliminated gas use in its kitchen completely and reduced staff workload on less important tasks, allowing it to work on improving the menu.

Tags : CateringRational
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The author Lee Peart

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