Smoked food has become an increasingly popular cuisine in restaurants worldwide. From briskets, ribs, and chicken to vegetables and cheeses, the smoky flavor has found a place in almost every kitchen. However, not all smoking equipment is created equal. Commercial pellet smokers have gained popularity for several reasons, including their efficiency, smoke emission, and food quality.
First and foremost, commercial pellet smokers are more efficient than traditional stick burners. Pellet smokers are automated and require less labor than their traditional counterparts. With a pellet smoker, a chef can set the temperature and leave the smoker to do its job without having to babysit it for hours. On the other hand, traditional stick burners require constant attention, wood and charcoal replenishment, and temperature monitoring. This can take away from other tasks in the kitchen, such as cooking other dishes or attending to customers.
Another advantage of pellet smokers is that they emit less smoke than stick burners. This is especially important for restaurants that may have trouble obtaining a permit for their stick burners, particularly in municipalities with strict air pollution regulations. Pellet smokers have an electric-powered auger that automatically feeds compressed wood pellets into the smoker's fire pot, producing smoke. This results in a cleaner and more controlled burn, producing less ash and minimal creosote buildup. In comparison, stick burners produce more smoke and ash, leading to more emissions.
While some traditionalists may argue that the food quality of a pellet smoker can never match that of a stick burner, the reality is that the difference is minimal, if any. Pellet smokers can achieve the same smoky flavor, tenderness, and juiciness as a stick burner. Additionally, the results are more consistent, thanks to the automated temperature control and consistent fuel source. This means that chefs can produce high-quality smoked dishes every time, without worrying about temperature fluctuations or running out of fuel.
In conclusion, commercial pellet smokers have several advantages over traditional stick burners. They are more efficient, require less labor, emit less smoke, and produce consistent and high-quality smoked dishes. While some may argue that traditional stick burners are the only way to achieve authentic smoky flavor, the reality is that commercial pellet smokers can achieve the same results, or similar results, while making the process easier and more environmentally friendly. Restaurants looking to incorporate smoked dishes into their menu should consider investing in a commercial pellet smoker to improve their efficiency, consistency, and overall dining experience.
The key is to make sure you use high quality pellets produced in a "round log" pelelt mill.