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The Importance of Chafing Dishes in the Home and on the Job

By: Greg Weinstein

Let’s Dish

Buffets, caterers or anybody that wants to keep their hot food in an attractive display can utilize one of the many chafing dishes available at Elite Restaurant Equipment. When looking for a new chafer, consider the shape, where it will be used and the fuel type. Chafing dishes, also known as "chafers," can be used at a temporary buffet spread, or even at a permanent spread in a banquet hotel environment. Chafing dishes can also be used in the home especially at large events such as parties or BBQs. Chafing dishes come in oval, rectangular and round shapes. The shape one purchases should be based on what the dishes are going to be used for. Most main courses are served from oval or rectangular chafers while sides and desserts are served from round models. Another thing to keep in mind when selecting chafing dishes is heat type; they can use either electricity or canned heat. Canned heat produces a chemical-based flame that is placed on a special holder underneath the dish. Canned heat is ideal for caterers or other event planners that do not have electrical outlets near their buffet table, and is more portable than electric heated versions.

Accessorizing

Chafers are available with a variety of accessories. Winco and Thunder Group make various accessories for chafers. These include wire stands, chrome plated stands, roll top covers, and even a folding chafer stand with curved legs. Pans can also be purchased. Pans are available in several different shapes. Chafing pans are available in round, oval, and rectangular shapes. Some of these pans can hold between 7-11 quarts of water. The rectangular pans can be purchased either four or six inches in depth. Some chafing units have beautiful gold accents around the dish making it more impressive to your guests, as well as on the eyes. Some chafers also have feet on them which helps them stand by themselves. Some chafers also contain roll tops. Roll tops conveniently roll to help keep the food hot and at the same time give the appearance of elegance.

Various  Different Shapes and Sizes

As aforementioned chafers come in a variety of different shapes and sizes. Each chafe may also have a different capacity of food it can hold. Oblong chafing dishes have an eight quart capacity. Also these dishes can be purchase with gold accents. These dishes are available in several different dimensions. The height of these dishes can either be 13’’ or 16’’. The widths are available in either 23’’ or 29.5’’ and the depths are available in 14’’ or 17.25’’. Oval chafing units have beautiful gold accents around the dish making it more impressive to your guests, as well as on the eyes. Oval shaped chafing dishes are also available. These dishes can include a roll top. If the unit does not have one you may order one. These chafers have either a six or seven quart capacity. Rectangular shaped chafers are also available in a variety of different dimensions. These dishes can include a roll top. If the unit does not have one you may order one. The heights of these chafers include 8.75’’, 16’’, and 17’’. The widths of these chafers come in 12’’, 22’’, and 28’’. The depths of these units could be either 10’’or 14’’. Roll top chafers come in round, oval, and rectangular shapes. The chafing dishes help keep food warm by the unique roll top lid and at the same time provide a stunning appearance. These chafers can range in dimensions. The heights of the chafers can range between 13.25’’-15.75’’. The widths of these units vary between 12.5’’-29.5’’. The heights of roll top chafers can also differ from anywhere between 9.25’’-17.25’’. Round chafing dishes are also available. Round chafing units have beautiful gold accents around the dish making it more impressive to your guests, as well as on the eyes. These units may come with a roll top. Once again if they do not come with these tops they are available for purchase. Round chafers can have many different capacities. They are available in 4, 5, 6, and 8 quart sizes. The round dishes can range anywhere between 10.25’’-27.5’’ in height. The widths of these units can vary between 13.75’’-22’’. The depth of these dishes can range between 10.25’’-13.25’’. The final chafing dish available is square shaped. Square chafing units have beautiful gold accents around the dish making it more impressive to your guests, as well as on the eyes. The capacity of these square chafing dishes can be either four or eight quart. The heights of these chafers are either 17’’ or 27.5’’. The width of the units can either be 13.75’’ or 28’’. Finally the depths of these chafers can be either 10.25’’ or 14’’.

Cleanup Time

Chafing dishes can help the overall presentation of any event. From professional caterers to domestic family get together chafers can be used in many different settings. After purchasing a chafing dish for my restaurant I was marveled by how incredibly durable this unit was. I decided to use this chafer for my dessert my specialty peach cobbler. The customers loved not only the cobbler but more importantly I received countless compliments about my presentation. I was so impressed with the durability and beauty of the chafer I decided to also purchase several for my home. When I have guests over no matter what I decide to cook I know exactly what it will be served in. Before purchasing the appropriate chases there are several things that must be taken into account. The first thing is for what food item am I buying these chafers for. Most main courses are served from oval or rectangular chafers while sides and desserts are served from round models. The next factor to consider is how much space you need in the chafer itself. Chafers can hold as little as four quarts and go up to eleven quarts. The shape is the next variable that you must decide on. Oblong, oval, rectangular, round, and square are the shapes that are available. Once the shape is selected you may decide to get a chafe with a gold accent to give a more stylish look.  Finally you must determine whether you want the chafer to have a roll top. Roll tops are available on rectangular, oval, and round shapes. If you the unit you have selected does not include a roll top one could be purchased as an accessory.   

 

About the author: Greg Weinstein and his family have been in the restaurant business over 35 years. Greg and his family’s restaurants include a buffet, soul food, and Italian. In his spare time Greg likes to travel to his vacation home in San Diego and also loves to fish.