Par-baked goods have grown rapidly over the past five years, and today include a plethora of specialty loaves, savory items, baguettes and dinner rolls. They are ubiquitous at a variety of food establishments, including quick-serve restaurants (QSRs), supermarket bakeries, convenience stores, sandwich shops and cafes. Key to that growth is applying an immediate freeze after partial baking, which preserves product quality and freshness.
“Cryogenic freezing of par-baked goods is giving commercial bakers who have only baked fresh a new strategy. Bakeries can extend their distribution range and serve new retail segments,” says Mark DiMaggio, head of food & beverage, Linde LLC.
Hygienically-designed cryogenic tunnel freezers and spiral freezers from Linde represent the state-of-the-art for freezing par-baked goods on a continuous basis. “Commercial bakeries can avoid mechanical holding freezers and ammonia freezers. With the addition of a simple, compact cryogenic freezer, they can enter a world of frozen par-baked products delivered to a much larger network than their current radius. And they can do this without a great deal of capital investment and floorspace, which are a few of the advantages of cryogenics,” DiMaggio said.
Cryogenic Freezers vs. Mechanical Freezers
Low capital investment
Higher throughput in less space
Higher quality product
Linde freezing solutions help keep par-baked items fresher longer, so they can help extend a baker’s effective service area. A cryogenic tunnel freezer or a spiral freezer flash freeze using controlled blasts of liquid nitrogen (N2) or carbon dioxide (CO2). The quick freezing action preserves the shape and appearance of the product while helping to retain the baked dough structure and desired moisture level inside.
Cryogenic freezers deliver par backed products that maintain the internal structure and integrity of the product while providing high production rates for the bakery. Linde offers a range of cryogenic spiral freezers, from entry-level box spiral freezers for lower volume production, to the hygienically-designed CRYOLINE® XF (cross-flow) spiral freezer. The cross-flow spiral freezer features a patented high-efficiency design that produces a more even flow across the belt for higher yields and can deliver production rates up to 20,000 lbs. per hour.
State-of-the-art cryogenic freezers from Linde can deliver more productivity per sq. ft. than mechanical freezers, and are highly efficient so they can help keep operating costs low. Hygienic design features make them easier to clean and maintain. In addition, turnkey services can speed installation, and lease agreements can keep the capital investment low.
Fresh-from-the-oven signature breads at retail were once almost the exclusive province of fine restaurants. But the rise of commercial par baking has made it possible for any restaurateur or food retailer to produce even artisan breads without skilled labor. With par-baking, dough is partly baked (typically 80-90%) by the commercial bakery so the yeast is activated and the loaf is set for final baking. There’s no need for dough mixing, kneading or proofing. The retailer need only pop items into an oven to brown -- and let the aroma fill the air.
Par-baked goods have been available in supermarkets since about 1949 with the advent of Brown ‘n’ Serve rolls. Joseph A. Gregor, a baker who was also a fireman in Avon Park, Fla., reportedly discovered the advantage of par-baking while experimenting with a new biscuit recipe. When the local siren sounded, he donned his fire hat, shut off the oven and ran out the door. On his return, he discovered the rolls were fully baked on the inside and needed only a quick browning to finish.
Linde has been the pioneer in cryogenic food freezing and chilling solutions for decades. The Linde food team performs in-plant assessments and works with food processors to develop optimal solutions. For more information, see Linde (www.lindefood.com), or call: 800-755-9277.
Linde LLC supports the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) and the advancement of food safety. Linde has a Food Safety Management System in place for all bulk carbon dioxide (CO2) plants and air separation facilities supplying the food & beverage industry in North America. In June 2012, Linde became the first supplier to certify all of its CO2 plants to a benchmarked GFSI scheme, FSSC 22000 (Food Safety System Certification).