Re: kitchen equipment
From: Robert Hartman (
Date: Thu, 19 May 94 13:37 CDT
I am really enjoying reading this list!   It's great to be able to discuss
all aspects of shared living.

With regard to accommodating the entire community for dining, I think it is
a good idea to plan the space so that you can do that.  However, a dining
area is large, and only used intensively at common meals.  If the trend is 
typically to get only about 60% participation, I'd want to partition the
40% furthest from the kitchen and make it available for other uses.

With regard to the need for safe food handling in a common kitchen vs. less-
rigorous standards at home, there are some good reasons why food hygeine gets
more important as you get more people involved.

First, the more people you have prepping, cooking, serving, and
cleaning up, the more different routes for possible contamination you
introduce.  You also introduce a wider variety of contaminants, because
people travel so much.  At home, you probably have less than five
people who come into contact with food, utensils, and containers.  When
you up that to 50 (as you would with a buffet), you increase
contamination risk by an order of magnitude.

Second, the more people you have eating the food, the wider the variety of
susceptibilities you have.  Food safety isn't about ensuring that I don't
get sick, it's about ensuring that _nobody_ gets sick.  That's a very 
different consideration.

With regard to commercial vs. home equipment, I agree with the folks
who favor commercial-grade cookware and dishware.  I worked in
restaurants for many years.  Commercial pots, pans, dishes, and
utensils really hold up and work much better when cooking in quantity.
Also, commercial dishes are designed to "soak clean."  They are much
easier to wash than home-grade dishes, but you do have to soak them.

What I'd suggest is checking the classified under "business opportunities"
for restaurants that are being sold.  You can often bid for this stuff
against liquidators; you can get a much better deal this way than by
shopping the supply stores.

When it comes to washing dishes, there is nothing like a commercial,
stainless-steel deep-tub sink and sprayer.  Once you get all the food
off, how you get the dishes up to that magic 140 degrees can depend.
Commercial sterilizers are big and expensive, but very quick.  A couple
of heay-duty home dishwashers might be cheaper.  The pre-heater is a
great idea!


Results generated by Tiger Technologies Web hosting using MHonArc.