Sous vide was once seen as something that you would only see in the five-star, high-end restaurants of the likes of Gordon Ramsay and Heston Blumenthal, but as professional-grade equipment becomes more affordable and more chefs become familiar with the method, we’re seeing it in more and more commercial kitchens.
Here we’re going to take a quick look at some of the major benefits that sous vide can offer in a commercial restaurant setting.
Especially in a larger restaurant where you’re struggling to meet multiple orders at once, sous vide can be a lifesaver.
This is because it allows you to prepare large quantities of ingredients at once which can then be quick chilled and refrigerated without any loss of quality.
Then, all you need to do is reheat the ingredients and quickly sear to finish before serving, saving valuable time and personnel.
While the specifics will be unique to every restaurant, using sous vide can ultimately result in greater yields for your restaurant.
While there will be an initial outlay to get the equipment that you need for sous vide cooking, they can start to pay back and start making increased revenue within a year.
Not only can you afford to charge higher prices for your ingredients, as your customers are receiving a higher-quality product, but you’ll also enjoy less portion shrinkage, be able to turn cheaper cuts of meat into more premium products, and spend less on seasoning and staff costs, all of which will help increase profits in the long run.
Flavour & Nutrition
Sous vide allows you to achieve consistent results which would be very difficult to achieve through traditional cooking methods.
Because the ingredients are cooked evenly and for a much longer period of time, you achieve a much evener texture, while traditional methods will always leave your ingredients more overcooked on the outside than they are on the inside.
The method also provides nutritional benefits by reducing the harmful loss of nutrients and minerals that arise from cooking at high heat. By locking all of the ingredients in a sealed pouch, you don’t just lock in all of the great flavours, but the nutrients too, all of which gives your customers greater trust that you’re providing high-quality and healthy dishes.
More Time for Other Tasks
Because food cannot be burnt or overcooked when being cooked sous vide, it frees up the chef and their staff to carry out other tasks.
All they need to do is set the sous vide equipment to the desired temperature and it can be left to cook without any loss in quality, meaning that you can spend more time on other tasks such as training other members of staff.
Some people have concerns about the safety of sous vide cooking, but it is, in fact, a very safe way of cooking.
Vacuum sealing the ingredients helps to reduce cross-contamination between different ingredients and allows them to be cooked at the same time (providing you have room in your water bath or chosen vessel).
Increased Shelf Life
Cooking sous vide will also help to increase the shelf life of your ingredients and ensure that wastage is kept to a minimum.
Any food which is cooked but not immediately served can simply be quick chilled in an ice bath and refrigerated ready to be reheated and served over the next couple of days and the exact same quality, resulting in reduced wastage and lower operating costs.
Sous vide involves cooking your ingredients at a consistent, low temperature for a long period of time without overcooking.
This means that once you’ve worked out the perfect temperature and cooking time for your ingredients, you can achieve those same great results every single time, which will translate to satisfied customers.
These are just some of the benefits that sous vide can have in a commercial kitchen, both financial and to make the lives of chefs and their staff easier.
And with sous vide equipment more affordable than ever before, why not consider introducing sous vide into your kitchen?