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-.

Turkey and Cranberry Panini

Chef's Corner

Turkey and Cranberry Panini

It’s that time of year again—turkey time! ACP is getting into the holiday spirit with this tasty turkey and cranberry panini. Chef Tony whipped up a cranberry port sauce from scratch in less than 5 minutes, to add a festive touch to this turkey panini. By using the Amana HDC212 to cook the sauce, Tony was able to save 20 minutes without sacrificing quality, in comparison to traditional stovetop preparation.

With the cranberry sauce done, assembling the panini was a snap. After just 35 seconds in the Amana AXP speed oven, the panini was heated and toasted with striking grill marks. The secret to success? The PRS10 panini press accessory for Amana AXP and Menumaster MXP high-speed ovens. The adjustable and removable panini press works in conjunction with the oven’s 4 cooking technologies, to quickly and consistently deliver perfectly pressed sandwiches. Check out this simple recipe and try it out for yourself this holiday season!


Ingredients

Port-Cranberry Sauce
  • 1/2 cup (120mL) Ruby Port
  • 1/8 tsp (0.5mL) orange zest
  • 1/2 cup (120mL) fresh orange juice
  • 8 oz. (240g) fresh cranberries
  • 3/4 cup (144g) sugar
Turkey and Cranberry Panini
  • 1 ciabatta roll
  • port cranberry sauce
  • 3oz. (85g) sliced turkey
  • 2 slices provolone cheese
  • 1 handful of baby arugula leaves

Port-Cranberry Sauce

Total Cook Time: 3:50

Yield:2 cups (473ml)

Accessories:

  • 4″ (10cm) deep, 1/2-sized pan

Procedures:

  1. In a 1/2-sized pan combine the port with the orange zest and orange juice. Bring to boil heating in the HDC212, MDC212, or DEC21E2 for 1:15 at 100% power.
  2. Remove from oven. Add cranberries and sugar. Return to oven and heat for another 1:15 at 100% power.
  3. Remove from oven and stir. Return to oven and heat for another 45 seconds at 100% power.
  4. Remove from oven and stir. Return to oven and heat for a final 35 seconds at 100% power.
  5. Transfer to a bowl. Serve warm, refrigerated, or on Turkey and Cranberry Panini.
    Note: Allow to rest to reach thicker consistency.

Turkey and Cranberry Panini

Total Cook Time: 0:35

Serving Size:1 sandwich

Accessories:

  • PRS10 Panini Press

Procedures:

  1. With panini press (PRS10) accessory installed and its top grill plate set on the middle level, preheat AXP or MXP oven to 520°F (270°C).
  2. Slice ciabatta bread horizontally and lay both sides cut side up.
  3. Assemble the sandwich filling in the following order:
    1. Spread the bottom side of bread with your freshly made port cranberry sauce
    2. Top with turkey slices
    3. Layer slices of provolone cheese on top of turkey
    4. Top with fresh arugula
    5. Cap sandwich with top part of bread

  4. With the PRS10 set on the middle level place sandwich in the AXP/MXP oven.
  5. Toast in oven with the following settings:
    Oven Temperature: 520°F (270°C)
    Stage Time MW% Fan% IR%
    1 0:35 100% 0% 100%

  6. When done, remove from oven cut in half and enjoy.

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!

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.

December Industry Tid-Bits

Chef's Corner

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

December Industry Tid-Bits

Foodservice Visits Set to Grow in 2016
In 2015, the U.S. foodservice industry ended the year with a total traffic volume at 61 billion, a 1 percent increase. The NPD Group predicts an additional traffic increase of 1 percent in 2016. Click here for more information!

Delivery Shows Popularity in 2015
An increasing number of restaurant chains achieved delivery status in 2015 as the on-demand consumer trend continues to grow, while other restaurant operators struggled to keep up. Click here for more details.

Restaurant Trends for 2016
NRN predicts a variety of new restaurant trends for the year 2016, from shake shooters to increased levels of veggies. Click here to learn more!

National Oatmeal Month

Chef's Corner

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

National Oatmeal Month

baked-oatmeal-300x200

The start of a new year often represents a handful of new goals and resolutions, whether it be starting a new exercise routine or sticking to a new diet plan.

Many of us can admit to having trouble with sticking to these ambitious objectives, but as if ringing in the new year isn’t enough of a reason to jump into culinary change, the calendar can help in more ways than one!

The month of January is national oatmeal month. This vitamin packed breakfast item is a healthy source of B vitamins and calcium, and it takes longer to digest, resulting in feeling full much sooner. It also assists in lowering cholesterol and reducing the risk of heart disease.

Oatmeal doesn’t have to remind you of soupy, bland wallpaper paste though! Chef Sandy minimizes the inclusion of sugar and uses other ingredients high in protein and antioxidants to provide a powerful, flavorful punch.

Fruit and Oat Breakfast Cassrole

Ingredients:
• 2 Tbsp. light brown sugar
• 1/3 cup old fashioned oats
• 1 egg
• 1 handful fresh blueberries – 2 oz.
• 1/3 cup 2% milk
• 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
• 1 Tbsp. sliced almonds
• 1 Tbsp. shredded coconut
• Additional 6 fresh blueberries

Tools:
• 
MXP oven
• 
Oven paddle
• Mixing bowl
• Rubber spatula
• Ceramic oval bowl
• 1/4 size metal sheet pan

Directions:
1. Place all ingredients except almonds and coconut in a mixing bowl and mix evenly for 20 seconds. Make sure egg is well beaten.
2. Pour into ceramic bowl and place on 1/4 sheet pan covered with parchment paper.
3. Place in MXP oven and cook at the following settings:

Stage 1: 1 minute      50% MW      0% AIR      100% IR
Stage 2: 40 sec         40% MW    40% AIR      100% IR

4. Remove from oven and sprinkle with almonds and coconut flakes.
5. Place berries on top of baked casserole.

Fruit and Oat Breakfast Cassrole

Santa Size Red Velvet Dessert

Chef's Corner

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

Santa Size Red Velvet Dessert

Red Velvet Cookie

‘Tis the season for sweet indulgence and festive decor! Anyone can bake a decadent dessert in a glass dish, springform pan, or even a mug these days. However, when cooked in a skillet most cookies, brownies and cakes tend to have a softer center due to a larger size, while still maintaining a perfectly browned edge.

ACP Corporate Chef Sandy Gibilisco’s recipe for Santa Size Red Velvet Dessert is the perfect example of utilizing a cast iron skillet for sweet indulgence during this holiday season.

SANTA SIZE RED VELVET DESSERT
Yield: 1 large skillet dessert, 8 servings

Ingredients:

14 oz. red velvet cake mix
2 eggs
6 Tbsp. melted butter
½ cup milk chocolate chips
Vanilla ice cream
Kirsch liqueur
Whole cherry pie filling

Procedures:
1.  Pre-heat AXP22 to 350⁰ F
2.  Spray one 10″ skillet pan with non-stick spray
3.  Mix all ingredients together until well incorporated
4.  Spread evenly throughout skillet pan
5.  Place in AXP22 and heat at the following settings:

Stage 1          5:00          10% MW          0% AIR          100% IR
Stage 2          0:30          20% MW          0% AIR          100% IR

6.  Let dessert cool before adding toppings
7.  Top with vanilla ice cream
8.  Mix 2 Tbsp. Kirsch per one cup cherry pie filling and add to top of dessert
9.  Top with whipped cream and serve immediately

SANTA SIZE RED VELVET DESSERT