Best Compact Oven & Proofer Set-Up for Bread?

I don’t have a lot of room but want to put something compact like what Subway does. So that I can put a good sheen and crust on my bread I want the oven capable of producing good steam. Anyone have an suggestions or brand to look at? The are many setups on Ebay but I’m not sure what to look at and what to stay away from.

I buy frozen foot long sub rolls from Sam’s…sometimes I defrost them overnite in the cooler, but mostly I just pan 'em up & put 'em in a closed carrier for 4 hrs…

Then I split the top, spritz w/water & run 'em thru the conveyor (MM360 12.4 minutes @340) I use sheet pans & silicone forms…I have also used the metal baquette pans (want to buy a few?)

We bake or subs and the bread is just plain AWESOME…

I’m with Patriot’s on this one. Making any quantity of bread/rolls takes a lot of time and space if you’re going to do it right. Think of it like this, just to make a very basic hoagie: Mix the dough (full gluten develo0pment) this takes about 20-minutes, then scale and divide into pieces, set aside to proof (intermediate proof) for another 20-minutes or so. Now you can begin forming into hot dog shaped pieces (called moulding). As the dough is moulded, it is placed onto pans for final proofing. Once all of the dough has been moulded and panned, it is placed into a warm (95 to 100F) and humid (75 to 80% relative humidity, room or cabinet where it will proof (rise) for 45 to 60-minutes, then they’re removed from the proofer, given a docking slit along the length of the top of each dough piece, and placed into the oven using stram during the first 20-seconds or so, of the baking cycle. Immediately after baking, the buns are removed from the pans and transferred to a wire rack/screen for cooling (about 20-minutes). They are now ready to be packaged. Sure, if you are just wanting to make a few, it is a lot less work, but if you’re looking to make any quantity, this is what it will look like. You are way ahead of the game to buy your rolls ready made, or at least buy frozen dough that you can manage for making a small number of buns daily. If you have a retail bakery near you, maybe you can strike up a deal where they will make your breads and buns for you.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

Hi Pizza Pirate:

Tom gives good advise but if you want to do it your way check out.

If that looks like something you could use let me know and i will get a price for you I think a system as shown is well over $6,000.00

George G Mills

Nothing beats the smell of fresh baking bread…Using a slogan like “We bake our sub buns fresh daily!” sure sounds better than “We buy them from the local cash and carry”…Sure there is an investment, however, so many restaurants are very “mediocre” these days…You need to set yourself ahead of your competition…I loved the thread on fresh soups…

I have not heard of Duke. At this point, I don’t see buying new equipment. Give this economy, I want to keep expendiatures down. I’ve seen used Langs, Super Systems, Nuvu and Blodgetts on Ebay but I don’t have a feel for a good brand to go with. We have some big rack ovens and proofers in our other stores and some of them do a better job with steaming than others.

We have 25 year old Hobart which gives a really good steam while a newer Hobart and Revent is not so good.

Oh, you are soooo very correct. I sure does smell great. But, many pizzerias just don’t have enough space to dedicate to bread production, but a brown and serve (par-baked) or pre-proofed frozen bun can place a close second in aroma when it is being baked-off, this is one reason why it is so popular in the U.K. This is also the approach that Subway takes with their sandwich program. I’m with you, if you have the space, go for it! It’s pretty easy to get trained in making bread/rolls too if you don’t know how.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

Hi Pirate:

If you are looking for a used set up such as Subway has, phone Phil at North West Bakery Equip.
616-837-9149 He has some units. Phil does good work and is honest and trust worthy.

George Mills