The 2018 Winston Equipment Award Grant Applications Begin December 1, 2017!

Mark your calendar! Your opportunity to apply for the 2018 Winston Equipment Award is December 1, 2017!

The award provides ten pieces of Winston Foodservice equipment to a school district in need of improving its school meal kitchen facilities through a competitive grant process.
The winning school district can choose any ten pieces from Winston’s product line of CVap Holding Cabinets, CVap Hold & Serve Drawers, and CVap Retherm Ovens.

Winston works closely with the grant winner to determine needs and assist in the final selection of equipment. Winston also arranges delivery of the equipment to the district. Depending on which models are ordered, it could mean over $50,000 in new equipment for your district!

To apply, you must:

  • Be an active SNA director-level member, who has been a member of SNA for at least one year.
  • Be the person responsible for directing the school nutrition program for the school district.

How can I apply?

The School Nutrition Foundation (SNF) will open the 2018 Winston Equipment Award application process on December 1st, 2017. The deadline for the application is January 15th, or once the first 75 applications have been received (whichever comes first). The application spots usually fill up quickly, so don’t delay in applying!
CVap equipment
Want to hit the ground running? Prepare your application ahead of time by downloading the Application Preparation Worksheet. Responses may be copied and pasted from the worksheet into the online application. Visit https://www.schoolnutrition.org/equipmentgrants to learn more.

Best of luck to all of you!

Who Doesn’t Love Cupcakes?!

Yum! Yum! Walking down the street and peering into the local cupcake shop, I often wonder, is that a sweet treat or a piece of edible art work? Mouthwatering cupcake shops have popped in every major city and in many small towns. If you want to use your CVap Cook/Hold or Thermalizer to rival the cupcake shops, we can show you how!

CUPCAKES
Just take your favorite cake recipe and set the Cook/Hold or Thermalizer to the below settings. CVap makes a moist and light cake that will be a hit for any occasion.

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With endless variations and recipes for cake, use your favorite recipe. Or if you need a quick and easy cupcake, here is a modified box recipe that I personally love to use:

Take your favorite standard size box mix and use 4 eggs, ¾ cup oil, 1 tsp vanilla, 1 cup sour cream and ¾ cup sugar. Mix and bake.

Cook/Hold settings:
Constant cook ON
Food Temperature 165
Browning 10
Bake at the recommended time listed for your specific cake recipe.

Thermalizer Settings:
Channel #4
Cook for recommended time and check mid-way through cook cycle

ICING
As for icing, buttercream is my favorite. Italian buttercream is made by cooking sugar and only using real butter. Cooking the sugar gives it a smooth texture and the butter gives it a rich flavor. Below is my recipe 🙂

Buttercream Icing Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 4 egg whites (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cubed and softened at room temperature
  • Pinch of salt, optional

*Makes buttercream for 12 cupcakes.

Buttercream Procedure:

  1. 000_2762Combine sugar and water in a medium-sized saucepan. Heat over low heat, stirring with a metal spoon, until the sugar has dissolved and the syrup is clear. Increase heat to medium-high and allow syrup to come to a boil.
  2. Meanwhile, place egg whites in a stand mixer fitted with a whisk, or in a medium bowl if using a handheld mixer, and beat until whites are almost able to hold soft peaks.
  3. Cook syrup until it reaches 235°F, then immediately remove from heat and slowly drizzle the hot syrup into the bowl with the egg whites, mixing continuously to prevent the eggs from scrambling: don’t pour the syrup onto the whisk, or the syrup may splatter against the sides of the bowl; instead, aim for a spot close to the whisk.
  4. Once all the syrup has been added, keep mixing until the bottom of the bowl feels cool to the touch and the meringue has cooled down to body temperature.
  5. Add butter one cube at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla and salt. The mixture may start to look as if it’s separating, but don’t panic: just keep mixing and whipping until the buttercream comes together and becomes smooth and gorgeous.
  6. Use immediately or refrigerate in an airtight container or a zipper-lock bag in the fridge for up to two weeks or in the freezer for up to two months. To use buttercream that has either been refrigerated or frozen, first allow to come to room temperature then beat until smooth and spreadable again. Cakes or cupcakes decorated with buttercream generally keep up to 3 days, stored in an airtight container in the fridge. Serve buttercream at room temperature.000_2767

Celebrate the Season with Gingerbread!

gingerbreadWhen you think of gingerbread, do you picture crisp cookies and holiday decorations? Or do you picture a moist, cakey treat that is best served warm with a dollop of fresh whipped cream? We’ve been leaning towards the latter!

In celebration of the holiday season, we’re sharing a couple of gingerbread recipes with you. The first yields a dark, moist cake, and the second (adapted from a USDA/NFSMI recipe) is geared toward high volume service. Both are delicious served either warm or chilled, and both recipes are written for the CVap Thermalizer Oven.

Moist Gingerbread (Small Batch)

Ingredients:

½ cup white sugar
½ cup butter
1 egg
1 cup molasses
2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon ground cloves
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup hot water

Preparation:

  1. In a large bowl, cream together the sugar and butter. Beat in the egg, and mix in the molasses.
  2. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves. Blend into the creamed mixture. Stir in the hot water. Pour into a prepared pan.
  3. Bake on Channel 4 for 20-25 minutes in a preheated oven, until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool in pan before serving.

Gingerbread (Large Batch @100 Servings)

Ingredients:

¾ gallon + ½ cup enriched all-purpose flour
¼ gallon whole wheat flour
¼ cup baking soda
3 ½ cups sugar
1 Tablespoon salt
2 Tablespoon cinnamon
2 teaspoon ground ginger
2 teaspoon ground cloves
3 ½ cups vegetable oil
20 large egg whites
1 quart 3 ½ cups water, hot
1 quart 3 cups molasses
2 cups chopped ginger

Preparation:

  1. Select Channel 3 to preheat CVap Thermalizer. Prepare two 18×26 size pans by covering with parchment paper.
  2. Combine flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, cloves, and ground ginger in a mixing bowl. Mix on low speed for 1 minute until ingredients are combined.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix vegetable oil, egg whites, hot water, and molasses with a large wire whip until blended.
  4. Slowly add the wet oil mixture to the dry ingredients. Mix on low speed for 1 minute.
  5. Pour @ 1 gallon of batter into each sheet pan and scatter chopped ginger over the top.
  6. Place in the preheated Thermalizer oven and bake 35 minutes.
  7. Cut each pan into 5×10 pattern or 50 pieces per sheet pan.

To Hold Warm Gingerbread

Hold baked gingerbread for up to two hours in CVap with the Food Temperature set at 140° F and the Food Texture set at 5° F.

Takeout Trend, Here to Stay

Z8XWHF6BW6The trend of ordering takeout among consumers won’t be going anywhere any time soon. What Americans want from their food is convenience – number one on the list even above price (Washington Post). With longer working hours, social events, childrens’ activities, the hustle and bustle of the everyday life make it hard to sit down in a restaurant or pick up dinner. So the delivery person is now on your speed-dial. The most recent data we have comes from 2013, where 60% of Americans admitted to ordering take out at least once a week (Statista).

From fast casual to top-end restaurants, customers want the option to dine on your food in the comfort of their own homes. They not only want to take your menu home, they expect to get it now.

What’s a restaurant to do?

3244194246_432a25887d_bBeyond the obvious – quality carry-out containers that hold the food’s temperature and separate areas for takeout diners to order food, pay, and wait – a restaurant needs to be able to fill these takeout and delivery orders quickly and efficiently.

DSC_0029That’s where CVap® Staging ability can mean the difference between quick turnaround time (happy, repeat customer) and slow service (frustrated, hungry customer). If your side dishes are ready to go, and your proteins just need a quick sear to get the main course ready for carry out, you can let your carryout and delivery customers order and then receive their food in rapid succession. This means getting them in and out faster, so they can dine in the manner they wish.

DSC_0059The CVap® Staging technique allows you prepare the protein in the same way you normally would (seasoning, marinade, etc.) and then place it in a CVap oven, which has been set to the appropriate levels of temperature and texture. Once the protein has reached the doneness levels desired, it can hold at that temperature until your customer orders. It can then go to the next stage in the cooking process: searing, grilling, etc. This gets the order finished much faster than the traditional means of cooking to order without compromising on quality or taste.

Take advantage of this latest dining trend by offering takeout meals. And let CVap® Staging help you make them the best meals your customer has ever had. And things won’t be slowing down anytime soon! The next big thing is online food ordering, which is already a big hit among the younger generation.

CVAP STAGING logo

CVap Saltimbocca, Southern Style!

plated shotSaltimbocca (also saltimbocca) (Italian: jumps in the mouth) is a dish (popular in southern Switzerland, Italy, Spain and Greece) made of veal lined or topped with prosciutto and sage; marinated in wine, oil or saltwater depending on the region or one’s own taste. This dish is also occasionally topped with capers depending on individual taste (Wikipedia).

Although veal and prosciutto are the proteins traditionally used when making this dish, our CVap Saltimbocca features chicken thighs in the starring role. And the Southern spin comes from wrapping the thighs with Woodlands Pork Mountain Ham, which is butchered and cured in the European style. >> Click here to learn more about its creator, Jay Denham. << We further amped up the southern charm by serving the Saltimbocca over Weisenberger grits mixed with Kenny’s Farmhouse Cheddar Cheese.

chicken on tray

We boned, skinned, and brined chicken thighs. We then wrapped them in the reserved skins and roasted them in a CVap Cook and Hold Oven at 165 + 30 for :30 minutes, then held them until we were ready for finishing. To do that, we removed the chicken skins, wrapped the thighs with fresh sage leaves, Kenny’s Farmhouse Cheddar, and Woodlands Pork Mountain Ham, and pan-seared them to crisp the ham. These were then held until we were ready to plate. As you can see, the thighs remained incredibly juicy while the ham achieved exactly the crisp texture we wanted.

cut chicken close-up

Meanwhile, we sautéed sliced cremini mushrooms with chopped onion and garlic, then reduced them with stock and a generous amount of butter.

mushrooms

For the grits, we mixed Weisenberger Grits with chicken stock and Kenny’s Farmhouse Cheddar, covered the pan with foil, and cooked it in a CVap Cook and Hold Oven 200 + 100 for an hour. For plating, the grits were topped with a salad of heirloom tomatoes tossed in a honey-thyme vinaigrette. Gorgeous all by itself!

grits on plate

We topped that with one of the Saltimbocca chicken thighs and a generous ladle of the sautéed mushroom mixture and its reduced broth.

plated shot

And the finished plate was as delicious as it was beautiful!

CVap Pretzel Bun Pork Loin Sliders with Apple Cabbage Slaw

Each component of this sandwich is perfectly delicious on its own, but the sum of all parts is downright scrumptious. Let’s start with the pretzel bun which provides the perfect framework for the other flavors.

Mini CVap Pretzel Buns

What is it about pretzel dough that adds something special to a sandwich, elevating our enjoyment of it? Is it the distinctive chew unique to a pretzel dough? Is it the slightly crunchy exterior of the roll? Whatever the attraction is, you can’t deny that pretzel rolls add something very different to any sandwich they become part of. So much so that they are appearing on menus everywhere, from QSRs to the most eclectic gastro pubs.

We’ve been experimenting with sandwiches of all sorts, and in this case, we experimented with creating a slider-sized version of a pretzel roll using CVap!

Dough
1 Cup Milk
2 Tbsp Butter
2 Tbsp Brown Sugar
1 Envelope Rapid Rise Yeast
2 Tsp Salt
3 Cups All-Purpose Flour

Boiling Solution
3 Quarts Water
3/4 Cup Baking Soda

Egg Wash
1 Egg
1 Tsp Water

Directions

Heat milk and butter until 105°F. The butter will not completely melt. Combine with yeast and brown sugar in a mixer bowl. Stir in salt and 2 cups flour and beat for 3 minutes. Gradually add enough of the remaining flour to make a soft dough. Mix on low for approximately 5-8 minutes to develop elasticity. Place in oiled bowl and cover. Allow to rise for approximately one hour or until doubled in size.

dough1. If using a CVap Cook and Hold Oven, program it to a Food Temperature setting of 130°F (Doneness) and a Food Texture setting of 10 (Browning), with Constant Cook ON, and set the timer for 20 minutes. If using a CVap Thermalizer Oven, set it to Channel 7 and set the timer to 14 minutes.

2. Combine boiling solution and bring to a boil. Punch dough down, divide into two equal portions, and roll into a log approximately 2″ in diameter. Cut each dough log into approximately 6-12 individual balls, dependent upon the size buns you desire, and form into tight rolls. Boil all rolls for approximately 2 minutes, then remove rolls from boiling water with slotted spoon.

3. Place rolls on parchment-lined baking sheets and brush with egg wash. Cut a cross each roll with very sharp knife. Place in oven and bake for recommended time based upon oven selected. Remove from oven and place on wire racks to cool.

sliced rollFollowing this procedure, the exterior color and texture were exactly what we were seeking, and the interior had just the right chew without being too “doughy.”

Oh What a Filling!

So how do we make a perfectly delicious pretzel roll even better? By turning it into a scrumptious sandwich!

 

Ingredients (per Slider)

2 oz. of CVap Staged Pork Loin
Apple-Cabbage Slaw
Coarse Dijon Mustard

CVap Staged Pork Loin Preparation

Program a CVap Cook and hold Oven to a Food Temperature setting of 135°F (Doneness) and a Food Texture setting of 0 (Browning). Allow about 30 minutes for pre-heating.

Arrange pork loin on a parchment-lined sheet tray and place into the preheated oven. The pork should reach a minimum endpoint of 135°F in about 1 hour, and can be held at exactly that temperature until you are ready to mark it on the grill before service. Preparing the pork in this manner (CVap Staging) will save a great deal of time during the finishing process!

Apple-Cabbage Slaw Preparation

Combine sliced Granny Smith Apples, 1/2 head green cabbage (sliced), 1/3 cup sugar, and 1/4 cup cider vinegar. If you want a creamier slaw, mix in 1 or 2 tablespoons of mayonnaise. Adjust seasoning to taste and add salt and pepper if desired. For more acidity, add a squirt of fresh lemon juice.finished slider for end of post

To learn more about CVap Staging and the possibilities it can bring to your kitchen and speed of service, download the FREE eBook:CVap-Staging-ebook-download-button

2014 Kentucky-Tennessee StarChefs.com Rising Stars

On February 25 we attended the StarChefs.com Kentucky-Tennessee Rising Stars Awards Gala, where we saluted some of the region’s brightest up-and-coming chefs, culinary professionals, and artisans. Having this particular event in our own back yard afforded us the opportunity to see many old friends and make some exciting new connections!

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Our enthusiastic congratulations go to the following honorees:

Chef: Matt Gallaher, Knox Mason
Chefs: Michael Hudman and Andrew Ticer, Hog & Hominy
Chef: Philip Krajeck , Rolf and Daughters
Chef: Keri Moser, IvyWild
Chef: Annie Pettry, Decca
Chef: Levon Wallace, Proof on Main
Pastry Chef: Kayla Swartout, Capitol Grille at The Hermitage Hotel
Concept: David Mitchell, Mitchell Deli
Sustainability: Matt Lackey, Flyte World Dining
Artisan: Jay Denham, The Curehouse
Artisan: Scott Witherow, Olive and Sinclair
Roaster: James Tooill, Argo Sons Coffee
Brewers: Sam Cruz and Jerry Gnagy, Against the Grain Brewery
Sommelier: Julie DeFriend, Oakroom at the Seelbach Hilton
Mixologist: Susie Hoyt, The Silver Dollar
Mixologist: Doug Monroe, Patterson House
Restaurateurs: Benjamin Goldberg and Max Goldberg, Strategic Hospitality, LLC

Click here to learn more about each of these very talented folks and what makes them shine>>> http://www.starchefs.com/cook/events/rising-stars/2014/kentucky-tennessee/why-they-shine

All of the Rising Stars events are a great opportunity not only to meet a very talented group of people, but also to sample some of their signature work, and this Revue was no exception. The tasting menu certainly showcased their gifts! Take a look for yourself>>> http://www.starchefs.com/cook/2014/kentucky-tennessee-rising-stars/gala-tasting-menu The dish featured by Chef Levon Wallace of Louisville’s Proof on Main – Australian Wagyu Carpaccio, Horseradish, Oyster Mushrooms, Squash Pickles and Seeds, Nasturtiums, and Ranch Dressing – was voted the crowd favorite.

Pictured below is Decca Chef Annie Pettry’s Grilled Carrots, Carrot Purée, Pickled Carrots, Carrot Top Oil, Buttermilk Ricotta, Brown Butter Egg Yolk, and Kale Furikake, along with the CVap POD she used for the tasting event.

BhXdi8JCUAA_qjdWe look forward to future Rising Stars events and hope to see you there!

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