Why optimize cooking?

Optimized cooking means,during the available time, using as little energy as possible with a lowchamber temperature to achieve the lowest possible C-value and an optimalF-value. Under these conditions, unnecessary weight loss, surface damage,protein leakage and bacteriological cooking are avoided.

How it started

A first step, and thus an essential beginning, is that cooking processes are either monitored with a recording device or directly via an appropriately equipped computer control system. If a recording device is available, it is possible to record the temperature curves for the core temperature and the room temperature and thus draw conclusions about the currently achieved F and C values. The step cooking program already brings some good success with regard to the C-values.


This is the further development of the step cooking program. “Delta” stands for difference and “T” for temperature. This means that a cooking program is carried out with a temperature difference. But which temperature difference is meant? We speak of the difference between the core temperature and the treatment temperature (chamber temperature). However, there is no agreement among experts on the size of the difference. For good reason. Here again the criteria already mentioned such as product dimensions, calibre and thermal conductivity play an important role. Some prefer a Delta-T of 15 degrees Celsius, others of 20 degrees or 25 degrees. Therefore, a Delta cooking program is only good if this Delta-T can be set differently from program to program, i.e. arbitrarily.

The sequence of a Delta-T cooking program is simple for most variants:

·       A batch of ham should be cooked to acore temperature of 68 degrees Celsius. A cooking program with a Delta-T of 25degrees Celsius is available. The maximum upper treatment temperature is 75 degreesCelsius. The initial core temperature is 12 degrees Celsius.

·       After starting this program, thecontroller will maintain the treatment temperature in the plant at a constant25 degrees above the measured core temperature. At the beginning a room temperatureof 37 degrees is required. The Delta-T of 25 degrees is no longer maintainedfrom the time when the core temperature plus 25 degrees results in more than 75degrees. From this point on, the maximum treatment temperature is 75 degrees.

·       This type of delta cooking brings anoticeable improvement in terms of cooking damage and energy consumptioncompared with normal stationary cooking or step cooking programs.

The problem of Delta-T cooking: Depending on the product, product dimensions, caliber and thermal conductivity value, the cooking process takes different lengths of time. This time span cannot be determined with these simple programs. The expected F-value is also not known because the core temperature is uncontrolled.