Using the ComboEase Combi Oven
Sometimes called combo ovens or combination oven-steamers, combi ovens have become popular tools in commercial kitchens because of their versatile ability to combine convection and steam cooking. The Groen ComboEase line offers full-size combi ovens in single and double-stacked configurations that can be used in steam, convection, or combination mode to bake, braise, poach, steam, and rethermalize food.
Benefits of the ComboEase
Efficient and easy to use, the ComboEase includes a number of features designed to increase the output of a commercial kitchen and ensure that food is cooked with optimal results each time. In addition to standard steam and convection, the ComboEase ovens can be used in low combination and high combination modes, bringing the total number of available settings to four. These are selected by touchpad controls and allow you to control the amount of moisture used during cooking.
Steam mode is a great choice for cooking vegetables, rice, and fish. Combo Hi mode is beneficial for cooking ingredients that tend to dry out without the extra moisture added from steam, while Combo Lo mode can enhance bread and other food that needs a brown crust or soft center. Oven mode can be used for traditional convection baking in temperatures to 450 degrees Fahrenheit, with the fan on high or low speed. When cooking food that needs to be crisped or browned, such as french fries, the operator can select the CrispEase mode.
To achieve this effective mix of steam and convection functionality, the ComboEase uses a gas-powered convection oven and an exclusive boilerless reservoir system for steaming. The reservoir system features three shallow wells covered by a lid, so the oven can switch more quickly between convection and steam modes. In addition to limiting the time it takes to go from one mode to the next, the relatively small amount of water required for operation makes this Groen combi-oven less costly to operate and less susceptible to interior corrosion when compared to spritz-style models.
Cooking with the ComboEase
Because it is a full-size combi oven, one ComboEase can accommodate 10 standard baking sheets or steamer pans, with two per shelf arranged front-to-back. That configuration is safer than side-to-side placement for staff handling pan insertion and retrieval. Other convenient features include a removable drip tray, which prevents condensation, juices, and fat from dripping onto the floor of the cooking cavity, and a hands-free door latch that doesn't require busy chefs to put down their pans in order to open or close it.
The ComboEase does not come equipped with advanced programming options, but does have intuitive and uncomplicated controls that allow beginner- and expert-level cooks alike to set the preferred cooking specifications for each batch of food. It also includes digital controls and diagnostics, plus a display for the timer and temperature, and a pre-programmed cycle for cleaning.
Groen has created a reference guide, some of which is shown below, that suggests cook modes, times, and temperatures for different dishes. Because the specifics of what is being cooked can vary from one restaurant to the next, the information offered here should be adjusted to suit your preferences.
|Item Name (Weight/Amount)||Fan Speed||Cook Time||Pans Used|
|Rice (40 lbs.)||Low||30 min.||5, Non-Perforated|
|Frozen Broccoli (20 lbs.)||High||13 min.||5, Perforated|
|Baby Carrots (20 lbs.)||High||10 min.||5, Perforated|
|Frozen Lasagna (25 lbs.)||High||75 min.||5, Perforated|
|Item Name (Weight/Amount)||Lo or High?||Temp (F)||Fan Speed||Initial Cook Time||CrispEase Time||Total Cook Time||Pans Used|
|3⁄8-Cut French Fries (15 lbs.)||Lo||425||High||2 min.||10 min.||12 min.||5 Baskets|
|16-in. Round Pizza (5 Pizzas)||Lo||350||High||2 min.||6 min.||8 min.||5|
|Frozen Chicken Tenders (30 lbs.)||Lo||350||High||3 min.||10 min.||13 min.||5 Baskets|
|Proofed Bread, French Loaf (12 Loaves)||Lo||350||Low||10 min.||8 min.||18 min.||3 or 4|
|8-oz. Pork Chops (27 Portions)||Lo||350||Low||10 min.||20 min.||30 min.||2, Non-Perforated|
|Fileted Fish, 1-in. Thick (30 Portions)||High||350||Low||10 min.||4 min.||14 min.||5, Perforated|
|Item Name (Weight/Amount)||Temp (F)||Fan Speed||Cook Time||Pans Used|
|Cookie Dough (120 Portions)||350||Low||14 min.||5|
|Biscuits (100 Portions)||400||High||18 min.||5|
|Sheet Cake (5 Sheets)||350||High||30 min.||5|
|Baked Potatoes (100 Potatoes)||450||High||45 min.||5|