Processors of fried products may be interested in Chicago-based FMC FoodTech’s specialized frying solutions.
For processors of breaded and battered foods, the company offers TFF Series fryers with ThermoFin technology. The vertical fins, which are mounted inside the fryer tank and use thermal fluid to heat the oil, create a uniform heat compared to competitive tubular direct-fired heating technologies, says FMC FoodTech. Used in tandem with the company’s filters, the fryers allow the oil to be used for as long as 20 hr without developing significant free fatty acids.
With breaded products, the goal of frying is to maintain the product moisture while adding color, taste and heat treatment. The fryers are designed for coated products such as chicken, calamari, egg rolls and onion rings. The ThermoFin heat exchanger is designed with electro-polished fins that prevent sediment from sticking. The gentle heat-transfer is suitable for less stable oils like the healthier non-trans fat oils. This design, coupled with a reduced heat exchanger height, keeps the buildup of free fatty acids to a minimum, which if left to accumulate can hasten deterioration, requiring the oil to be thrown out.
Other fried products such as potato chips require higher heat. For example, potatoes are 80 percent water, most of which needs to be evaporated to make chips or French fries. Accomplishing this task requires three to four times the heat of a breaded-product fryer. For these applications, the company offers a multi-flow frying system that uses an indirect external heating system. Heated by thermal oil in a tube heat exchanger, the oil then enters the fryer at several inlet points and leaves at multiple outlet points. Vegetable oil is injected from the bottom and sides of the pan, using the oil’s turbulence to separate the potato slices as they come in. The system also may be used to create a temperature profile that emulates the cooking process and final product of kettle-style chips, using an inline process instead of batch frying.