Vacuum sealers Cooking For You: Vacuum sealers
By Tmarta (Tmarta) on Tuesday, June 11, 2002 - 07:43 pm: Edit

Has anyone tried to use, (or can find any reason against), using a vacuum sealer for PC jobs? I would think that it would be a good idea. Am I on the wrong track?

By Chefmanny (Chefmanny) on Wednesday, June 12, 2002 - 12:00 am: Edit

Vacuum sealers are the best way to store foods!!!!
The only drawback initially may be cost but, it is well worth it.

By Tmarta (Tmarta) on Thursday, June 13, 2002 - 09:01 am: Edit

Thanks, Manny. I'm only PC-ing for one , and I'm there sometimes twice a week, so conventional freezing has worked so far, but she has a 13-yr-old son,, and I think that a vacuum would help. (And with my teenagers). Speaking of sons, I pray that yours is doing well.

By Chefmanny (Chefmanny) on Thursday, June 13, 2002 - 07:29 pm: Edit

Thanks, I have not seen you post in a long time.
Dylan is doing great, going to 4th grade highly gifted next year!
Good luck

By Tmarta (Tmarta) on Saturday, June 15, 2002 - 09:01 pm: Edit

Manny, sorry I didn't get right back, I've been working long hours with a nut at a new job. We went to move the bakery, and I'll save you the sob story...but life got really hard. I am PC-ing for a friend who hired me to help straighten out her house and life, (which I did) and I just recently started in the kitchen of a really nice assisted living facility. I may have been a little misled, however, because although we pretty much cater to the residents wants/needs, it is not quite the quality work that I'd like to put out. It is a good opportunity, since it is a growing concern, with another site in the works. I really could have a future here, but well, I could really use a pep talk. Have you ever been in a job where you worked well below your ( how modest!) talents? Anyone? Good jobs are a rare commodity here, and I need this, but I'm not sure that I can do this.

By Tmarta (Tmarta) on Saturday, June 15, 2002 - 09:13 pm: Edit

George, do we need to move this to The Great Hall?I could really use any advice here.
P.S. Manny, I'm thrilled for your family.

By Gord (Gord) on Sunday, June 16, 2002 - 01:34 am: Edit

A number of personal chefs use vacuum sealers with great success. Obviously some foods need to be tray-frozen first so that the vacuum doesn't squish the life out of them.

Generally the consensus is that Tillia is the brand of choice and you want to go with one of the higher-end models (I think a 1050?) that has the manual seal button. Price per bag gets a little high - some charge for them, others roll it into the sell price.

Heating is a snap for the consumer using the boil-in-a-bag method.

This is second-hand info from the forums (public and private) at the American Personal Chef Association as I haven't used a vacuum sealer for years (had one of the original ones from a company I don't even remember the name of-it was not a tremendously good machine but I think the technology has gotten better in the last dozen or so years). Other opinions on the beasts may vary.


By Chefmanny (Chefmanny) on Sunday, June 16, 2002 - 03:02 am: Edit

Tonette, I did work in an assisted living facility once and it was the same way with me, I was misled into thinking I could change whatever I wanted with the food. It turned out they did not really want the changes because they were not cost effective for them, in fact it cost less in the long run they just did not want to invest the time and training of the staff that they needed.
Don't ever get down on yourself, jobs are always out there to be found!!!!!
You just have to keep looking and be persistant about what you want, don't take what they want to dish out. sometimes you do have to say NO!
Keep the faith

By Tmarta (Tmarta) on Sunday, June 16, 2002 - 07:08 pm: Edit

Thanks Gord and Manny, I really appreciate the tips on the vacuum sealers,(tray freezing, good idea!), and the pep talk.
I wonder if all assisted living facilities are this way? In three weeks I have made progress upgrading the diabetics' desserts, and presentation of cold plates, but I'm practically in the middle of nowhere here. I could stick it out and sellout, but I don't know if I can live with myself. I'm going to see how it goes for a little while longer...I'm out in the middle of nowhere, jobs are not easily found. If I were willing to commute, I could do very well, but my sons are still in high school, and although they have been good, I want to keep it that way! The older one basically runs his own life, and is doing a great job. The younger one is working on it. For two more years, I want to be accessible.
But I really appreciate your understanding and relating your common experience. It helped.

By Zchef101 (Zchef101) on Sunday, June 16, 2002 - 10:06 pm: Edit

I also worked at an assisted living facility and found it terribly unchallengind. Found there was only so many culinary upgrades to make and for me it was not enough..hang in there because with the right attitude you will walk into what you want.
The vaccuum sealer sounds like the ultimate in PCing and HMRing. I have a heat film sealer and it works very well, but the vac would leave almost limitless posibilities to menus.

By Tmarta (Tmarta) on Monday, June 17, 2002 - 08:03 pm: Edit

Thanks for the input. I have actually made a few in-roads, creatively speaking, in the last two days. But I don't know how much more I can do. I agreed to start working with them waaay under what I make PC-ing, but as that avenue is limited here, I took the chance. Even with the growth potential at the facility, I know that I can't stay with this job if I can't be creative. I guess we're all a little crazy, it's like living for art.
I'm going to get that vacuum sealer yet! New toy, new toy! Anyone else have a cool new toy?
(I got my boss wanting an electric sifter!)

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