A lot of water has flowed under the bridge since the last edition of HOSTELCO, and the catering sector, unstoppable, continues to tackle technological challenges and consumer habits. In has an ally in this titanic task: innovation in equipment, more active than ever. And as a small sample, this selection of innovations.
Here are some of the most interesting innovations that I have found lately in my travels through the corridors of trade fairs and gastronomic congresses. Mind you, not all of them are here: there are many more… But I can’t resist telling you about some of the equipment that has surprised me, and that contributes to improving the work and what hotel and catering can offer:
Hello, induced ripening. Have you ever heard of this revolutionary technique? It has just arrived in the professional kitchen and basically makes food become more tender and voluminous, and with all its aroma, consistency, and colour, extending its useful life. It is presented by the Italian company NCG, and its Waveco equipment (patented, of course) makes it possible to prepare food quickly, cook at a low temperature with mathematical precision, ripen products, achieve ultra-fast fermentations, mayonnaise without emulsifiers… It is going to drive the most restless chefs crazy.
– Supercooling is here. If I hadn’t seen it I wouldn’t believe it, but I was able to experience for myself, thermometer in hand, how a beer at -5ºC kept its foam, bubbles, and liquid state intact. A challenge to physics? No: it is the revolutionary supercooling technology brought to Spain by Wondercool refrigerators. They allow all kinds of drinks to be cooled below their freezing point without freezing: a real plus for bars and restaurants which can now boast, and rightly so, that they offer their customers the coldest drinks on the market
–The worktop you can cook on: an innovation that allows chefs to cook directly on the worktop and that is now sweeping into restaurants. It’s called TPB Tech, and its secret is the invisible induction plate integrated into the worktop itself. A new concept in industrial kitchens to which it contributes space savings, easy maintenance, low energy consumption, and great safety. Martín Berasategui, Xavier Pellicer, and the Torres are already cooking on it…
– The democratization of the churro: many catering establishments would like to offer freshly made churros at any time and on demand, something which is often incompatible with the way the place operates. The Zamoran MBZChurros has solved this with its revolutionary machine that makes fresh and crunchy churro, with the flavour of the authentic handmade churro, and healthier too: cholesterol-free by using dry heat. And yes, they’re very good. A patented innovation that has aroused the interest of bars, cafeterias, and hotels around the world, and that will soon have an older sister: a vending machine for hot churros.
– High quality ice… and much cheaper. This is what Gold Ice achieves, an innovative system for the production, drying, and automatic storage of frozen ice cubes. Thus, the caterer can offer their customers ice of the highest quality, without any wastage due to defrosting, or breakage or blocks of ice due to transport. Those who had traditional ice makers now optimise the consumption of water and power to the maximum, and those who bought ice cubes are saving up to 80%, say its creators. Hotels, pubs, lounges, cafeterias, beach bars, and even haute cuisine restaurants already use it.
– Sandwiches in seconds: this is the promise of the Croust’Wich system, which makes it possible to make quality sandwiches, wraps, and salads in two seconds, on demand, with fresh ingredients and warm, crispy bread, thus encouraging impulse sales. These attractive fast-food points of sale, which are sweeping France, optimise the preparation of sandwiches and their fillings thanks to their carefully designed design, and guarantee high profitability and return on investment.
– Smokeless and fat-free iron: contributing to the unstoppable health awareness trend, Rog-Roll’n’Grill cooks meats, fish, and vegetables quickly and without oils or other fats, to the desired point, and without generating smoke, so no extraction is required. The food is cooked by passing through the three rotating rollers, which act as an iron, and once done they drop into the collection tray. A compact, ultra fast, and easy to operate unit, and the best part: it is self-cleaning.
– Farewell to unsteady tables and chairs, to unforeseen spills, and to having to put pads on legs. The revolutionary esTABLEes system, designed by the designer Rafa Ortega, guarantees total stability even on the most irregular pavements, as the furniture that incorporates it automatically adjusts to the floor in a few seconds, and as many times as it is moved. The firm offers catering a wide range of steady tables and high tables that cater for all needs and styles, perfect for indoor and outdoor use…
– The plate that absorbs fat: yes, yes, you read correctly. Created by a young start-up from Bilbao, the Hello plate defends the pleasure of enjoying food without worrying about one’s figure. Its surface full of holes is capable of absorbing the oil from dishes, cutting between 300 and 420 calories per serving. The Hola plate is made of high quality white porcelain, with a diameter of 25 cm. It is dishwasher-safe and is aimed at both the domestic market and the horeca channel. Chefs like it not only for being able to offer dishes with less fat, but also for the aesthetic value of the plate itself, the design of which has received international awards.
– The chicken rotisserie that collects fat and cleans itself. The American company Alto-Shaam presents the AR 7T rotisserie with automatic fat collection and self-cleaning system. In this oven, the grease collection system is automatically activated during cooking, and the grease is pumped to external containers with total safety and less work for the staff. The self-cleaning system employs jet technology that eliminates the most difficult dirt and reduces water consumption to a minimum.
Do you find these innovations interesting? So remember this date: from 20th to 23rd April 2020, where a new and improved HOSTELCO trade show, with more exhibition space and six new areas, will showcase the very latest developments for the big catering family.