10 Fast Facts about the Microwave

10 Fast Facts about the Microwave...Percy Spencer, radio frequency, healthy cooking, and more

10 Fast Facts about the Microwave

1. Discovered during WWII—by accident

Microwave energy was initially developed for radar systems during World War II. In 1945, Dr. Percy Spencer was working on radar systems for Raytheon Corporation when he accidentally discovered that microwaves could be used for cooking. While conducting experiments with a new style magnetron, a candy bar in his pocket melted.

Get a firsthand account in this interview with Dr. John Osepchuk [1].

2. The first microwave oven

The first commercial microwave oven was produced in 1947. The oven was about 6 feet tall and weighed about 750 lbs. In 1965, Raytheon acquired Amana® Refrigeration.  Two years later, Amana brought the first affordable home microwave to market: the Radarange™—a name that is still associated with Amana® Commercial ovens and ACP, Inc.

3. Cooking with radio frequency

The heart of the microwave oven is the magnetron, a device that produces radio waves. These waves excite water molecules within food, causing them to vibrate rapidly. This vibration results in heat, cooking the food from within.

4. Seal of safety

The Slotted Choke Door Seal is the reason microwave ovens are safe and available for public and home use today. It virtually eliminates microwave energy escaping from the oven cavity. One of its inventors, Dr. John Osepchuk is still an ACP consultant.

Modern microwaves are regulated with stringent standards. [2] Each ACP oven is tested to meet and exceed these standards.

Electromagnetic Spectrum

5. Microwave cooking retains nutrients

According to a study by Harvard Medical School, “because microwave cooking times are shorter, cooking with a microwave does a better job of preserving vitamin C and other nutrients that break down when heated.” Steaming in the microwave is actually preferable to submerging foods in water, which can result in a loss of nutrients. “The cooking method that best retains nutrients is one that cooks quickly, heats food for the shortest amount of time, and uses as little liquid as possible. Microwaving meets those criteria.”[3]

6. Turntables are overrated

A popular yet imperfect “solution” to eliminate hot spots is to rotate food on a turntable. With turntables, individual hot spots are eliminated along donut-shaped paths, only to be replaced by bands of hot and cold. Depending on the oven, sometimes the center is cold, sometime its hot. But never uniform. And, more than half the oven’s volume is wasted outside the turntable- a huge waste of money and capacity.

7. Tuning—not just for good band practice

To eliminate hot spots, advanced oven designs like ACP’s, agitate and reflect the microwaves instead of the rotating the food. Microwave energy is reflected off a rotating antenna. This “chops up the nodes”, sweeping them around the oven cavity like a spotlight off a disco ball.

Fueled by decades of dedicated research and development, ACP’s expertise in ‘tuning’ pairs geometry of the cavity with antenna design to optimize energy distribution and intensity. The result is even and superior cooking performance.

This side-by-side thermographic comparison demonstrates the superior and even cooking performance of Amana® and Menumaster® Commercial products.

8. Cook settings—one size does not fit all

Different foods respond differently to microwaving. Balancing cooking power and cooking time is key to overcome the differences between food and ingredients and get a good result. For example, food with a high amount of water, salt, sugar or oils/fat cooks faster because of a higher rate of MW absorption.

The ACP Culinary Center team of expert chefs and food scientists are masters of all things microwavable. They provide expert support to customers, including menu development and cooking times.

9. Saving energy and saving time

According to Energy Star, “Microwave ovens use less energy (up to 80% less) than conventional ovens. In addition to saving energy, microwave ovens generally cook food much faster, and don’t generate as much heat in your kitchen, so you could save on air conditioning costs during the summer.”[4]

So how much does it cost to use a commercial microwave oven on a daily basis? Check out the energy cost breakdown by model.

10. An American tradition in innovation and manufacturing

Microwave cooking was first discovered in the U.S.A in 1945. The first consumer microwave was developed and manufactured in Iowa in 1967. Now, over 50 years later, ACP is proud to continue the legacy as the only microwave manufacturer producing ovens in the U.S.A. Earlier this year, ACP launched the Xpress IQ™ ARX & MRX high speed oven. Xpress IQ™ combines impingement, convection, and perfectly tuned microwave energy for faster cooking, toasting, browning.

ACP, Inc. produces commercial microwave ovens under the Amana® Commercial brand within North America, and the Menumaster® Commercial brand globally. ACP ovens have been ranked best in class year-after-year, and are preferred in areas of performance, reliability, service, construction, ease of use and safety.

Headquartered in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, ACP is a member of the Ali Group – a privately held company based in Milan, Italy that specializes in designing, manufacturing and servicing of commercial foodservice equipment. The Ali Group operates globally through 76 brands with sales and service subsidiaries throughout Europe, North America, South America, the Middle East and Asia Pacific.

ACP, Inc. factory workers building microwave ovens in Cedar Rapids, IA

References
  1. YouTube / ACP Dr. John Osepchuk Interview, YouTube, 20 Dec. 2013, youtu.be/DgdA3stsjgA.
  2. “CFR – Code of Federal Regulations Title 21.” Accessdata.fda.gov, FDA, US Food & Drug Administration, www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfcfr/CFRSearch.cfm?CFRPart=1030&showFR=1.
  3. Publishing, Harvard Health. “Microwave Cooking and Nutrition.” Harvard Health, 1 Aug. 2017, www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/microwave-cooking-and-nutrition.
  4. “Does Using a Microwave over a Regular Oven Save Energy?” ENERGY STAR, energystar.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/211440198-Does-using-a-microwave-over-a-regular-oven-save-energy-.

National Restaurant Association Show 2018

Chef's Corner

Because only the best commercial ovens keep your kitchens running like they need to.

National Restaurant Association Show 2018

ACP, Inc. was proud to participate in this year’s annual National Restaurant Association show in Chicago, where we exhibited the full line of Amana® and Menumaster® Commercial high-speed ovens and microwaves. The ACP booth featured live cooking demonstrations and the new Xpress IQ™ High Speed Ovens.

ACP would like to thank all attendees for their time spent at our booth. Special thanks go out to all participating guest chefs who dedicated their time and energy to keeping attendees well fed and informed. Thanks for making the show a success!

We look forward to seeing everyone next year for NAFEM and NRA Show 2019!

Energy Efficient by Design

Chef's Corner

Energy Efficient by Design

Save time and energy by cooking and baking up to 15 times faster than conventional ovens with microwaves and high speed combination ovens from ACP!

Commercial microwave ovens by design are one of the most efficient and lowest cost appliances found in commercial foodservice kitchens. Commercial microwaves use up to 80% less energy than conventional ovens! Microwave ovens cut energy costs by only using energy when cooking—eliminating the need for pre-cooking and holding. During the cooking process, existing water molecules within the food are activated to create steam and shorten cook times even more. Plus there’s no need for costly ventilation!

Ever wondered exactly how much it costs to use an ACP oven on a daily basis? We’ll break it down for you:

Microwaves and Steamers

By using a high powered Amana® or Menumaster® Commercial microwave oven to steam or heat foods, operators can cut their equipment energy costs in half when compared to using an electric countertop steamer for the same tasks.

Microwave Energy Consumption Analysis
  • 1000 Watt models (RMS and RCS): 28¢ per day 
  • 1200 Watt models (RFS and HDC): 37¢ per day
  • 1700 and 1800 Watt models (RFS, HDC and RC): 51¢ per day
  • 2100 and 2200 Watt models (MSO, HDC and RC): 59¢ per day
  • 2400 Watt models (OnCue): 57¢ per day
  • 3000 Watt models (RC and MSO): 81¢ per day 

High Speed Combination Ovens:

ACP High Speed Combination ovens, which combine microwave energy with other proven cooking technologies, also offer energy savings over traditional equipment. With cooking speeds of up to 15 times faster than conventional methods, operators can cook more in less time while using less energy than larger,traditional ovens. Plus, no expensive, energy consuming vent hood is needed!

High Speed Oven Energy Consumption Analysis
  • 1400 Watt models (ACE/JET): $1.25 per day
  • 1900 Watt models (ACE/JET): $1.49 per day
  • 1000 Watt models (ARX/MRX): $1.68 per day
  • 2000 Watt models (ARX/MRX): $1.82 per day
  • 2200 Watt models (AXP/MXP): $2.67 per day

Energy Costs by Wattage and Power Consumption… Parameters are:
Energy costs: $0.11 kWh*
Cook cycles per day: 100 cook cycles
Typical cook times: 60 seconds
*Energy cost estimate is based on the U.S. Energy Information Administration Independent Statistics and Analysis Report for commercial energy usage.
Cost per day in USD

Sweet Potato Fries

Chef's Corner

Sweet Potato Fries

Corporate chef, Chris Waltman of Forbes Hever & Wallace developed this oven-baked recipe as an alternative to fried sweet potato fries. Using the Amana® Commercial AXP Speed oven, he was able to bake these tasty fries to perfection in the same amount of time as a traditional fryer, and 15-20 times faster than a traditional convection oven.

Add some wiggle room to your New Year’s resolution with these delicious baked—not fried, sweet potato fries. Indulge in the crispy exterior and soft, creamy interior of these fries. Baked from raw in just 3 minutes using the Amana® Commercial AXP Speed oven, this energy-efficient method of cooking eliminates food waste, while ensuring timely service.

Check out the video and recipe below, and get cooking!


Sweet Potato Fries

 

Servings:1

Total Cook Time: 3 minutes

Ingredients

  • 8oz (224g)Sweet potato (cut into ¼” fries)
  • 1oz (30mL) avocado oil
  • 1Tbsp (15mL) tapioca starch
  • Salt

Accessories:

  • Non-stick basket (TB10)
  • Oven paddle (PA10)

Procedures:

  1. Toss the raw, cut fries in the avocado oil
  2. Add oiled fries to clean bowl. Toss with powdered tapioca starch and salt.
    The powdered starch is key for ensuring a crispy—never soggy, texture
  3. Arrange fries in a single layer in nonstick basket (TB10)
  4. Using program settings below, bake in your AXP/MXP oven.
  5. Remove from oven, and transfer fries to clean bowl. Season to taste and enjoy!

Program settings:

Oven Temperature: 520°F (270°C)
Stage Time MW% Fan% IR%
1 1:00 50% 100% 100%
2 1:00 80% 100% 100%
3 1:00 20% 100% 100%

Featured Chef Spotlight

Corporate Chef Chris Waltman

Forbes Hever & Wallace, Inc.

fhw-chris

Forbes Hever & Wallace, Inc. has been representing food service and supply manufacturers since 1986 and is the official distributor of ACP Amana® and Menumaster® Commercial ovens in Texas and Oklahoma.

Learn more about Forbes Hever & Wallace and check-out their top-notch team, including Corporate Chef Chris Waltman at www.your-rep.com

Lebanese Olive Pizza

Chef's Corner

Lebanese Olive Pizza

According to National Restaurant Association’s What’s Hot: Top 10 food trends for 2017, ethic cuisines are trending, with “consumers’ sophisticated palates, driven by international travel and access to a wider variety of ethnic cuisines right here at home.” Millennials especially are influencing this trend with their adventurous appetites and desire to explore global flavors.

This millennial approved Lebanese Olive Pizza is a quick Middle Eastern recipe, which can be simplified by using a premade Lebanese bread or naan as the crust. Try it using an Amana® Commercial AXP or Menumaster® MXP high speed combination oven today.


Lebanese Olive Pizza

 

Servings:1-2

 

Ingredients

  • 1 – Lebanese Bread (can substitute Naan or Pita Bread)
  • 5 oz – tomato paste
  • 5 oz – fresh Mozzarella Cheese (shredded)
  • 4 oz – Kalamata Olives (chopped or sliced)
  • ¼ tsp – dried oregano
  • ¼ tsp – crushed basil
  • ¼ tsp – ground black pepper

Accessories:

  • Pizza stone (ST10X)
  • Oven paddle (PA10)

Procedures:

  1. Preheat the pizza stone in oven, allowing 30 minutes to pre-heat thoroughly
  2. Spread tomato paste over top of bread. If using a smaller bread such as Naan, use 2 pieces of bread
  3. Sprinkle with Mozzarella Cheese and top with olives.
  4. Sprinkle the oregano, basil, and pepper evenly over the pizza.
  5. Place on pizza stone in AXP/MXP and heat using the program settings below.
  6. Remove from oven, slice, and enjoy

Program settings:

Oven Temperature: 520°F (270°C)
Stage Time MW% Fan% IR%
1 0:50 70% 10% 100%


Works Cited:

“What’s Hot: Top 10 Food Trends for 2017.” National Restaurant Association, 08 Dec. 2016. Web. 17 July 2017.


Roasted Turkey, Avocado, and Bacon on Ciabatta

Chef's Corner

Because only the best commercial ovens keep your kitchens running like they need to.

Roasted Turkey, Avocado, and Bacon on Ciabatta

Yield: 4 sandwiches

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. roasted turkey breast, sliced
  • 4 ciabatta rolls
  • 1/2 cup plain hummus
  • 12 slices of bacon
  • 4 slices of swiss cheese
  • 1 avocado, halved, pitted, peeled and thinly sliced

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 520°F.
  2. In a large, heavy skillet over moderate heat, cook 6 slices of bacon, turning occasionally, until crisp. Then transfer with tongs to a paper towel lined plate to drain. Repeat with remaining 6 slices and set aside.
  3. Slice each ciabatta in half and place on large baking sheet.
  4. Spread hummus evenly on top and bottom ciabatta halves.
  5. Place 3-4 slices of turkey on each ciabatta bottom.
  6. Lay 3 slices of bacon on the top ciabatta halves.
  7. Place avocado slices on top of the bacon.
  8. Place a slice of swiss cheese over the avocado slices on each sandwich half.
  9. Assemble the sandwiches and heat in the panini press equipped AXP at the following settings:

Time: 0:40    MW %: 50    Fan %: 60    IR %: 100

February Industry Tid-Bits

Chef's Corner

Because only the best commercial ovens keep your kitchens running like they need to.

February Industry Tid-Bits

African Flavors Top 2016 Trends
According to the National Restaurant Association, African flavors are at the top of the “What’s Hot” list for 2016. This trend has made a 20 percent increase in popularity over the past year. Click here to learn more about these spicy flavors.

NRA Acquires NRFSP
The National Restaurant Association announced they have acquired the National Registry of Food Safety Professionals (NRFSP). The U.S. based organization provides certifications for those seeking credentials in food safety operations. Click here for more information.

Ali Group Promotes Jennifer Ward
The Ali Group announced the promotion of Jennifer Ward. Ward will take on a newly created position as vice president of national accounts for Ali Group North America, starting April 1, 2016. Click here for more details.

Bang-Bang Chicken Sliders

Chef's Corner

Because only the best commercial ovens keep your kitchens running like they need to.

Bang-Bang Chicken Sliders

When it comes to the appetites of today’s consumers, less is more. NRA’s 2015 What’s Hot survey reports that 63% of respondents claimed small/half portions to be a hot trend.

While sliders, for example, have long been the result of a spontaneous quick-service craving, they now appear in many variations on full-service restaurant menus and supermarkets. The versatility of the slider allows an application to provide pre-made sandwiches on-the-go or fresh, on-demand.

Today’s mini-sliders go beyond the traditional “bun, burger, cheese, bun” compilation, though. Chefs from various genres have incorporated high end cuts of meat, fresh vegetables, unique cheeses and condiments that pack a punch.

Looking for a modern slider entrée that will catch the attention of hungry basketball connoisseurs during 2016 March Madness? ACP Corporate Chef Sandy Gibilisco’s Bang-Bang Chicken Sliders will do the trick!

Bang-Bang Chicken Sliders
Yield: Approximately 2 ½ dozen sliders

Ingredients:
2 pounds large white meat chicken nuggets, frozen
½ head thinly sliced iceburg lettuce
3 dozen Hawaiian rolls, or small slider rolls

Bang-Bang Sauce:
1 stick melted butter
6 Tbsp. hot sauce
3 Tbsp. dry ranch seasoning
2 Tbsp. sriracha hot chili sauce
¾ cup mayonnaise

IMG_0024

Procedures:
1.  Pre-heat AXP22 to 520⁰F (270⁰C)
2.  Spray ¼ size sheet pan with non-stick spray
3.  Whisk together all ingredients for bang-bang sauce
4.  Place frozen chicken nuggets on pan and place in pre-heated oven
5.  Heat at the following settings:

1:45     60% MW     70% Air     100% IR

6.  With tongs, remove from pan and toss with bang-bang sauce in a bowl
7.  Place sauced chicken nugget on slider bun and top with shredded lettuce
8.  Serve with a small wedge of bleu cheese or celerys ticks, if desired

Note: for variation, toss cooked, breaded shrimp in bang-bang sauce for Spicy Shrimp Sliders

Bang Bang Chicken Sliders

Millennials and Appetizers

Chef's Corner

Because only the best commercial ovens keep your kitchens running like they need to.

Millennials and Appetizers

“Millennials are the snack-food generation,” according to Foodservice Equipment & Supplies (Levin). In a recent articleFE&S magazine and menu designer Wendy Dimitri shared some insight on the influence and demands of millennials.

While young consumers continue to be drawn to traditionally portioned entrées, studies have shown that the group is largely known for ordering various small portion entrees at once, such as appetizers or side dishes, and classifying that as a meal.

ACP Chef Sandy Gibilisco’s avocado & tomato melt can serve as a light prelude to an entrée, OR a savory standalone dish. Its fresh ingredients attract the millennials’ interests in food origins while acknowledging their desire for ingredient customization as well.

Click here to read about another delicious and versatile appetizer cooked in the AXP!

melt

AVOCADO & TOMATO MELT

Ingredients:

●  2 english muffins
●  1 fresh, ripe tomato
●  1 fresh, ripe avocado
●  4 slices mozzarella cheese
●  optional: spicy sriracha mayonnaise

Procedures:

melt2

1.  Peel avocado and slice in half. Slice each half into 5-7 sections.
2.  Split english muffin in half. If desired, spread a small amount of sriracha mayonnaise on each half.
3.  Slice tomato into 4 slices.
4.  Place avocado slices evenly across each muffin half.
5.  Place 2 tomato slices over avocado on each muffin.
6.  Top with 2 slices mozzarella cheese.
7. Place on ¼ sheet pan and heat in the AXP22 at the following settings:

Oven temperature: 520⁰F
Time: 0:45
MW: 60%
Air: 70%
IR: 100%

 

Works Cited:
Levin, Amelia. “Designing Menus for Millennials.” Foodservice Equipment & Supplies. 27 August 2014. 27 January 2016.

AVOCADO & TOMATO MELT

January Industry Tid-Bits

Chef's Corner

Because only the best commercial ovens keep your kitchens running like they need to.

January Industry Tid-Bits

McDonald’s Benefits from All-Day Breakfast
The burger chain said that same-store sales from the fourth quarter increased by 5.7%, which was their best performance since 2012. Click here for more details.

2016 Begins in Stagnant Fashion for Restaurant Industry
The beginning of 2016 has shown little direction of growth thus far, with an expectation of 1% traffic growth this year. To learn more about the many factors involved in this impactful occurrence, click here.

Predicted Operations Trends for 2016
NRN predicts various operational changes throughout the foodservice industry in 2016. Click here to learn more.