Friday, October 28, 2011

Food Warmer for the Home

The other day, my lovely wife commented before one of our sous vide meals "Sometimes the food is not as warm as I'm used to."  That was her nice way of saying "The food is cold by the time you do all your plating technique stuff!"  Typically, I make two plates and use mine to photograph while hers is sitting on the counter getting cold.  OK, note to self, "Need to fix cold food problem."

So I thought, well, I could nuke it....  No, that defeats the whole purpose of sous vide and the tender texture transformation thing!  Then I thought... I could crank the oven up to 200F and put her plate in there.  While that could do the trick, I would have to wait for the oven to heat up and it seems like adding even more timing elements to the cooking process.  So then I took to the web to research food warmers and low and behold, there are a number of them out there that do just that... keep your food warm, just like the restaurants use.  The trick was finding one that could be easily used at home since most of them were either very large or meant to be permanently installed in a restaurant.  I didn't want a permanent warmer taking up counter space all the time.

I finally found exactly what I was looking for in the Nemco portable infrared food warmer.  The model number is Nemco 6152-24.  Click here to see it at  This food warmer is 24" long and portable so it makes a perfect station on the counter top, but can be removed and stored when not in use.  I paid $169.00 for it.  When it arrived, I plugged it in and a little bit of white smoke came out!  But it dissipated quickly and the area under the heating element became nice and warm.

I tried it out the other night, putting my wife's dish under the warmer as I plated my dish and photographed it.  She said "Lovely!" so I guess it works!  So if you have gotten some comments like "I love the presentation but the food was a little cold", check out the infrared food warmers at!


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