Washing dishes may seem like the easiest task in the kitchen, as it is at home, but in a commercial kitchen environment, if things are done in the wrong way, the stakes are much higher.
A wide range of dishwashing machines is available for commercial kitchens, but it is important to ensure you read the manufacturer’s instructions. Commercial dishwashers have the advantage over home dishwashers of being extremely efficient and fast, automatically washing, rinsing and sanitising dishes at very high temperatures. Some cycles can even be completed in less than two minutes, which can save lots of valuable time in a restaurant environment.
However, the operator of the dishwasher must follow these practices in order to get the best out of the dishwasher.
1. Scrape Food
No dishwasher will cut through every piece of crusted-on food, so it is important to scrape any excess food from plates, dishes and platters. The best practice is to scrape large pieces into the bin and rinse off sauces and small food particles with a high-pressure wand.
2. Stack Properly
Due to the design of dishwashers, it is important to ensure the water can freely flow to every plate on the rack. Remember not to put bowls on top of each other so they are properly cleaned during the cycle.
There should be separate designated areas in the vicinity of the dishwasher: one for dirty dishes and one for clean plates to be stored. You must ensure dirty dishes are never left in the clean area, as this creates cross-contamination and means a dirty dish could be easily mistaken for a clean one. It could also lead to a bad hygiene rating during a food safety inspection.
4. Maintain and Clean
As with all commercial catering equipment, ensure you follow the instructions for cleaning your dishwasher properly as well as making sure it is properly maintained. Add sanitiser and detergent as needed. For catering equipment, look at a company such as https://www.247cateringsupplies.co.uk/.
In a commercial kitchen, dishes must be air-dried, as wiping dishes dry with a towel can cause cross-contamination. Towels can be easily contaminated with food or germs from a dish, which results in the spread of bacteria across every object the towel touches, creating the ideal breeding ground for germs as the towel becomes wet.