Chik’N is a quick service restaurant with locations in the heart of London – and choosing the right cooking equipment has been vital to its success.
With a menu targeting the top-end, fast casual market, founders David Clarke and Carl Wolanski worked in conjunction with their in-house development chef, Ash Mair, to create a stand-out menu.
Mr Mair explains: “Our main focus was to use the very best ingredients for our offering. This includes organic, free-range chicken, sourced from a farm in Somerset where they’re free to forage outside and our range of homemade sauces that really help us to stand out in this market.”
Having had experience of working with Jestic and Henny Penny frying equipment in previous roles, Mr Mair researched the latest innovations from the brand to see how they would fit with the bespoke requirements at Chik’N.
“We knew we were looking for a more traditional open fryer for Chik’N, but equally wanted something that could deliver the quality and consistency expected by our customers, so for this I took the trusted advice of the Jestic team,” said Mr Mair.
“Testing the Henny Penny Evolution Elite range at Jestic’s development kitchen, I was able to see just how the technology in these smart fryers works, and how it could benefit us as a business.”
Using a bank of four Evolution Elite fryers, Mr Mair’s team of dedicated chefs can ensure consistent quality, even after minimal training, as the smart fryers hold their hand through the process.
“The fryers are able to deliver remarkable consistency across our menu. Whether it’s the precision temperature control, the pre-programmable options or the smart monitoring that accurately measures the quantity of a product placed in the basket and adjusts the oil temperature and time to accommodate for it.
“This means we get a uniform finish, texture and taste whether we put one piece of chicken or 12 pieces of chicken into the fry pot at the same time. What’s more, the claimed oil savings of up to 40% compared to other commercial fryers appear to be completely justified.”
With Friday and Saturday evenings being the peak trading times for Chik’N, it is important to maintain consistent quality during high output.
The Henny Penny Evolution Elite range features an automatic filtration system, which after a set number of cook cycles for a particular product drops the oil through the filter before returning hot, clean oil back to the fry pot within minutes.
“The filter system is a brilliant concept and really helps us maintain service times during our busiest periods. No longer do we need to manually filter oil, having waited for it to cool first, as the Henny Penny fryers automatically do it for us. The ease of use has helped us greatly with efficiency in the kitchen, allowing us to de-skill our training to some extent and at the same time improve our output.”