Are you prepped and ready? Here is a commercial-grade quiz to put your knowledge of professional kitchen equipment to the ultimate test!
Professional kitchens are outfitted with high-quality and durable versions of many of the same items which could probably be found in a regular home kitchen. They are built to withstand constant use and all the banging, scrubbing and high temperatures they get exposed to.
From high-performance stoves to a range of refrigeration units and specialized cooking equipment - each item in the kitchen has its own job to do. Together, they assist chefs to consistently churn out top-quality dishes. Take that vacuum cooking technique, for example. Do you know the name of the machine associated with it? You don't have to be a "sous" chef to figure that one out. If you know what we're hinting at, keep it "under" wraps and get started on the quiz!
Of course, there is also a variety of pots, pans and other types of cookware. Can you tell them apart? Do you know which one is used for frying and which for making sauces? We've got several of them in the quiz waiting for you. Will you be able to name each one or will your goose be well and truly cooked? It's time to find out!
No one chef’s knife is going to be ideal for every cook or for every type of food preparation. Some are better for thin slicing of soft foods while others work best for chopping through hard vegetables and even bones.
Kitchen shears get used for a range of jobs including opening packages of food or new kitchen gadgets, and cutting parchment paper. They can also be used on raw meat, such as when deboning poultry. This is why a good pair of a kitchen shears should come apart at the hinge, so that it can be thoroughly cleaned after use.
Sautéing involves quickly frying in a small amount of hot fat while tossing or flipping the food. A sauté pan is specially designed for this with straight, shallow sides; a wide, flat base; and a long handle.
One often overlooked factor when selecting a commercial grade blender is the noise level at which it operates. Commercial blenders are powerful, and some tend to be noisy as a result. All that noise coming from the kitchen can be off-putting, however, to some diners.
Cutting boards which are too hard (for example, metal ones) can cause your knife to dull easily. It is best to buy one made of either plastic or wood and of those two, wood is often the better option. Both plastic and wood cutting boards are gentle on knives, but wood boards are less prone to bacterial growth.
Most home kitchens can get by with just one mid-sized colander. A professional kitchen, however, will likely have a large one which works best with large pots and a few smaller ones with different-sized holes.
Wood is the traditional material used to make rolling pins, but other material such as metal, glass and marble are also available. Metal rolling pins, such as those made of stainless steel, warm up quickly (in part, by absorbing heat from your hands) and this can affect the dough. Rolling pins made of metal may need to be chilled before use.
A skillet is very much like a sauté pan and it is not uncommon for persons to confuse one with the other. The major difference between them is that sides of the skillet are sloped outward, while the sauté pan has straight sides. Also, many sauté pans have a small handle opposite the longer one for added maneuverability while sautéing.
Walk-in freezers offer the convenience of high-volume cold storage but there are some precautions kitchen staff must take when using them. These include cleaning up spills as soon as they happen to avoid slipping. It is also important to clear away built-up ice and frost as these could melt to form puddles and lead to slipping.
Compared to other types of stoves, many chefs find that the open flame of a gas range makes it easier to judge, adjust and control the amount of heat being supplied to a pot. Furthermore, gas ranges are suitable for use with a wide variety of cookware – in terms of size, shape and material.
Metal mixing bowls are the preferred choice in professional kitchens. They have the advantage of being lightweight, durable, stovetop-friendly and relatively cheap. Also, metal bowls won’t smash into a million (potentially dangerous) pieces if they accidentally fall to the floor.
A good whisk has many (at least a dozen) wire loops which are flexible but still stiff enough to be used as a masher on soft foods. It should also be lightweight and fit comfortably in your hand to avoid hand fatigue on longer whisking jobs.
Chest freezers work very well at keeping a large volume of food items frozen for long periods of time without taking up too much space on the kitchen floor. They are also quite good at maintaining the inside temperature for days in the event of a power outage.
Measuring cups are usually separated in terms of what they are used to measure: liquids or dry ingredients. For liquids, both glass and clear plastic work well, but plastic measuring cups might melt or deform if used with hot liquids. Metal is usually the go-to choice for dry ingredients.
The saucepan is shaped very much like a sauté pan, in that they both have straight sides and a long handle, but the saucepan is taller and narrower than the sauté pan. Some saucepans, known as sauciers, are wider at the top than at the bottom
The term “baking sheet” is often used to refer to both cookie sheets and baking pans. Cookie sheets, however, only have one raised edge, allowing you to slide the cookies off once baking is done. Baking pans, on the other hand, have raised edges all around.
The traditional or waiter’s corkscrew can be a bit of a challenge for many people to master. There are alternatives such as counter-mounted, wall-mounted and electric corkscrews, which are popular options found in professional kitchens. They all make the job much easier, less frustrating and less time-consuming.
Scrub sponges have a bad reputation when it comes to spreading harmful bacteria around the kitchen. To eliminate the chances of contamination, scrub sponges should be kept clean and replaced often. They should also never be used for wiping away meat juices or for wiping down a countertop.
Class K fires are the ones of greatest concern in a restaurant kitchen. These are the fires caused by flammable cooking fats and oils. Class K fire extinguishers have both the chemicals and application method which best deal with Class K fires.
“Sous vide” translates to “under vacuum.” It is the method of vacuum sealing food in plastic bags, immersing them in water and cooking them at a specific temperature. It is almost impossible to overcook food using the sous vide method.
A food processor which is consistently run at higher than recommended capacity can become easily overworked. One way to avoid this is to buy a food processor with different-sized bowls.
Deep fryers come in both electric and gas models, as well as countertop and floor models. One important consideration when purchasing any type of deep fryer is its recovery time. This is the time it takes the deep fryer to heat the oil back up to the required cooking temperature after food has been added to it.
A prep table is an essential piece of restaurant equipment. It has storage area for several different types of prepared ingredients. It is refrigerated, so the foods are preserved at optimal temperature until needed. The prep table also has work or cutting surface which tends to be wider on pizza prep tables than on sandwich prep tables.
Its handle might not be the first thing you stop to think about when buying a grill pan, but it is a very important part of the pan. A long handle will not get as hot as quickly as a short one. Plus, a small helper handle opposite the long one is always a welcome bonus.
Unlike countertop blenders, immersion blenders let you purée, blend and crush ingredients right in the mixing bowl or pot you are preparing them in. Some immersion blenders are cordless and are the safer choice to use in a busy commercial kitchen.
Stockpots are typically made tall and narrow with straight sides. This helps the stockpot to hold a large volume of liquid and allows it to distribute heat evenly throughout the pot.
There are different types of scales which can be put to use in a professional kitchen. One is the receiving scale which works very well for weighing bulk items, especially upon delivery. There are also digital or mechanical portion control scales for measuring the amount of each ingredient to use in a recipe.
There are certain points to bear in mind to ensure you get an accurate reading on a meat thermometer. These include testing the thickest part of the meat and taking care not to let the thermometer touch bone, fat, gristle or the pan you are cooking in.
Height, width and weight are important factors to consider when purchasing a roasting pan. The height and width must allow for sufficient clearance to hold and lift the pan to remove it from the oven. Plus, a pan which is too light will tend to warp easily while one which is too heavy will be hard to maneuver.
Baked foods, such as pastries, which are left on the baking sheet or placed on a flat surface after baking are prone to becoming soggy. They should be placed on a cooling rack so that air can reach all their surfaces and help them to cool evenly.
Two accessories which are needed along with a commercial ice machine are an ice bin and a water filter. The bin holds ice which is ready to be used so there is always a supply on hand. The water filter helps to ensure that the ice produced by the machine is safe for consumption.
The serrated edge of the bread knife along with a sawing action makes it easy to cut through soft, crusty bread without having to press down on the bread with too much force. A good serrated bread knife is one of the three essential knives for any kitchen. The other two are a chef’s knife and a paring knife.
There are several ways to keep food warm and at a safe temperature until it is served to customers. One of these is a heat lamp which can either be suspended above or mounted onto the countertop where the food is kept.
A trivet can be used to raise a pot or pan over and away from the intense heat of an open flame. Another use is placing a hot container on a trivet so that the heat does not damage the table or countertop.
The splatter guard or splatter screen is a perforated or mesh cover for a frying pan. Its many tiny holes will let air and heat through but will not allow grease to escape.
Commercial floor mats serve as more than protective coverings for a kitchen floor. They help to prevent slips, falls and resulting injuries. Anti-fatigue mats can also provide comfort and support for workers who have to stand for long periods of time.
A ventilation hood has an extractor fan which draws out hot air, steam, odors, airborne grease and gases. Some ventilation hoods use ducts to lead the air out of the building while others filter the air and circulate it back into the kitchen.
A steam table is a gentle and effective way to evenly distribute heat and keep food warm. There is very little risk of the food burning or drying out as might be more likely with an open flame or a heating element. There will still be the need, however, for a member of the kitchen staff to periodically stir or rotate the food in the containers.
Charbroilers routinely operate at temperatures in excess of 550 degrees Fahrenheit. They come in countertop, floor and outdoor models, as well as being either electric or gas-powered.
Squeeze bottles are extremely versatile and get put to many uses in the commercial kitchen. They can be used to add just the right amount of liquid ingredients, such as oil, vinegar, sauces and salad dressings to dishes. They come in handy, too, as a creative way to dispense pancake batter to make interesting and intricate designs.