Solving Correctional Foodservice Challenges with Steam

The objective of foodservice directors and staff in a correctional facility is not that different from other types of high-volume operations. Foods need to be safe, prepared in advance in bulk, provide proper nutritional benefit, and they need to be delivered to specific proportions three times a day.

There are a few important differences, though. First, many staff members in a prison kitchen are comprised of the prisoners themselves. This means an added level of caution and safety. It also means directors need to keep a closer watch on inventory.

Directors and supervisors are also tasked with properly training staff, many of whom have likely never worked in commercial kitchens before. Workers will need to be trained on food handling, sanitation, how to perform certain tasks, and how to use the equipment and supplies that make meal service possible.

So how can steam cooking help solve some of these challenges? Using Firex and Crown steam cookers can help make preparing meals in correctional facilities easier.

Provide Nutritional Benefits

Steam cooking is one of the most efficient cooking methods for preserving food quality and the nutritional values of ingredients. By working at the cellular level, steam is attracted to the areas of food products that are yet to be cooked. The result is an even distribution of heat that preserves nutrients in the foods being cooked. With the Firex Automated Multicooker, elevating and tilting baskets also help facilitate the skimming of excess starches of cooked pasta and rice. As a result, diners will enjoy higher quality and the health benefits that directors are tasked with maintaining.

Cook In Bulk

Steamed foods are often cooked in steam kettles, which can come in a variety of sizes. With capacities of up to 100 gallons, kitchen staff in correctional facilities can produce high volumes of food while maintaining consistency throughout the cooking process. With some units, added pressure can be applied resulting in better food products cooked at higher speeds with greater yields. Crown heavy duty steam cabinets have large cooking capacities, up to 24 sheet pans, allowing for larger batch cooking at one time.

Maximize Labor

As we mentioned, staff in prison cafeterias are often comprised of the inmates themselves. With the right steam cooking equipment, lower-skilled laborers can be trained without the higher learning curves that come with other types of cooking processes and units. The right steam units can also make HACCP management easier, and provide levels of automation to make the cooking process even more efficient. Firex’s Cucimix is multipurpose to allow for multiple cooking styles. With automated water filling and a built-in mixer, the Cucimix saves on time and labor. And Firex’s Mixing Boiling Pan Baskett doesn’t require constant monitoring, allowing workers to do other tasks.

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Topics: Correctional