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Steam Equipment - Overview

  • Energy Input: Medium-capacity steam-jacketed - approx. 100,000 Btu/h; Compartment - 40,000 to 225,000 Btu/h; Combination Compartment/Kettle - 160,000 to 250,000 Btu/h; High Pressure - 45,000 to 200,000 Btu/h
  • Used for any food that does not require a crust
  • Food retains color, texture, moisture and nutrients
  • Highly efficient as heat transfer medium
  • Cooks either indirectly (e.g., jacketed kettle) or directly (e.g., steamers)
  • Steamers available in high pressure (15 psi), low pressure (2-5 psi), pressureless and pressure-pressureless
  • Operate from self-contained steam generator or separate, either central or dedicated, boiler (boiler based), or by boiling water poured directly into cooking compartment (connectionless steamer)
  • Ventilation - light, 100 to 200 cfm per linear foot

Steamer Cooking Efficiencies - Vegetables

In evaluating cooking-energy efficiencies, green peas were chosen for their consistency and availability. Red potatoes are more difficult to cook and more challenging for steamer comparison.

Energy Consumption for Gas & Electric Steamers

1Duty cycle is defined as the average rate of energy consumption expressed as a percentage of the rated energy input or the peak rate at which an appliance can use energy.
2Operating hours or appliance "on time" is the total period of time that an appliance is operated from the time it is turned "on" to the time it is turned "off."
3Based on monitoring two gas convection steamers with input rates of 250 kBtu/h and 200 kBtu/h.
4Based on monitoring two steamers.