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Handmade cookers a liability
Over the last few years, Spice Business
has received many complaints about
unbranded ‘DIY‘commercial gas cook-
ers in curry restaurants. Many are
assembled from scrap and their look
makes this obvious. These cook-
ers do not have any brand name, but
since they are cheap, have more burn-
ers than usual and the gas is emitted
speedily, restaurants chose them.
Gas cookers are the lifeblood for most
Indian restaurants, but many chefs
now speak of their growing frustration
with them. Firstly they are guzzling
enormous amount of gas as well as
leaking, thereby contributing to big gas
bills. Now the chefs are finding more
problems. The cooking pans wear out
faster in the intense heat from the
speeding gas and the knobs remain
tight for too long. Moreover these
cookers do not have any meters fitted
to the ovens and there are no proper
systems or modern gadgets. So you
cannot translate standard recipes into
cooking with them.
become so accustomed to ‘eye mea- They have an exclusive heat deflector
In the early days of the curry indus-
sure’ cooking on these cookers that that directs reflected heat back to the
try in the UK, there was a high level of
many would have to be trained from oven, not the floor and a stamped inner
demand for heavy duty Chester cook-
scratch to use electric cookers, where door for heat retention, while a burner
ers made of cast iron. After the demise
there is no scope for eye measure. baffle distributes heat flow for even
of the company, old Chester cookers
However restaurants are often so busy oven temperature. The DIY cookers do
that had been scrapped were recycled
staff cannot take time off for training. not have these features so more often
for use in Indian restaurants. Now
A number of brands, including Garland, than not kitchen staff scald their fin-
that supply of these scrap cookers
Tri-star, Blueseal, Falcon and Lincat, gers when opening the door to the oven
has been exhausted, manufacturers
are commercial gas cookers that can underneath the stoves. Furthermore,
of unbranded gas cookers have taken
be safely recommended. They are since the heat is not retained, nor
advantage of this void.
traditional gas cookers, but are made reflected back, but escapes outside it
It is estimated that around 60-70 per
with state of the art technology and results in more gas consumption.
cent of Indian restaurants now use
are user friendly as well as economic
gas cookers. The kitchen brigade has
in terms of fuel consumption. Restaurateurs have to learn not to
be penny wise,
pound foolish, and
select gas cook-
ers with a proven
track record, and
not unbranded
DIY cookers that
are cheap to begin
with, but which can
lead to long term,
expensive costs.
Spice Business Magazine 22 February | March 2010
spice_37.indd 22 11/02/2010 00:08
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