More BCH Vacuum Cooling Systems Going into Service!

Today we signed off, packed, loaded, delivered, and offloaded 2 x 1500 Litre Vacuum Cooling Vessels in readiness for a major shutdown and installation period – all to be completed over the Bank Holiday Weekend.

Our client is one of the UK’s leading providers of meal solutions and this first phase of the project will double their current sauce cooling capabilities, whilst at the same time providing the benefits of the fastest, cost-efficient, and environmentally friendly cooling processes in the prepared meals and allied industries.

It has been a major achievement for our in-house team to meet the tight schedules for this project and we want to say a big thank you to everyone for their efforts.

The same goes for the site team who have been very busy on site carrying out a lot of plant and utility equipment installation in the preparation for the Bank Holiday Weekend works.

Good Luck Guys and Well Done!

To book a trial and experience the benefits of the BCH Vacuum Cooling Process, please email  or call +44(0)1706 852122

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Photo by Nicholas Barbaros on Unsplash

Traditional Hummus Production VS BCH Hummus Production

Photo by Nicholas Barbaros on Unsplash

How is It Possible To Reduce Hummus Production Time by 10 Hours?!

Traditionally, the preparation of chickpeas to make Hummus can take over 10 hours, with the need to pre-soak the raw chickpeas before cooking.  BCH have developed a high speed system which improves the whole chickpea cooking and cooling process by removing the pre-soak stage, speeding up the cooking process, and introducing a rapid cooling method. Food manufacturers can now reduce their labour requirements, whilst saving valuable time and resources such as water, power etc..

This new process solution fits perfectly into today’s modern factory environment, where low risk and high care hygiene regimes require total separation of raw and cooked ingredients.

BCH have been at the forefront of similar product cooking & cooling systems which have been used extensively for many years in prepared foods industries all over the world.

What is Hummus?

Hummus (also known as Houmous) is a traditional Middle Eastern savoury dip which is now popular around the globe. Cooked and ground chickpeas are blended with tahini, olive oil, garlic, lemon juice and seasoning.

Hummus is packed with plant based proteins, vitamins and fibre, which are high in nutritional value and ideal for both vegans and vegetarians alike.

Here we compare Traditional Hummus Manufacture with the new BCH System:

Traditional Hummus Production:

There are several stages involved in the traditional time-consuming preparation of chickpeas, usually requiring various different types of equipment and multiple time consuming operations.  Resources such as heavy manual labour, and large volumes of water for soaking & cooling also required.


Traditionally it is necessary to pre-soak the raw chickpeas for around 8 – 12 hours to allow them to take up water and swell before cooking.


The soaked peas are drained and transferred to a heating tank to cook until the skins are softened, and the core has taken up additional water. The cooking process can take between 2 and 3 hours depending upon their moisture content. Typically, 10kgs of raw chickpeas will make around 21 to 22kgs of cooked chickpeas.


The chickpeas are usually cooled immediately after cooking to prevent over-softening & yield loss – typically quench cooled using plenty of cold fresh water, often taking over an hour to reach only 20°C.


The cooled chickpeas are then drained and held ready for processing into hummus.

Ground & Blended

Chickpeas are ground into smooth paste in a different process, and then blended with the other ingredients to produce hummus.

BCH Hummus Production:

Our systems offers a far more streamlined operation, enabling cooking to be carried out in parallel  with cooling, to provide customers with a reliable, semi-continuous, fully integrated production solution.

This unique bulk production method has multiple benefits; saving time, resource, labour and factory floor space – as well as making the whole process far easier and safer. In many cases, it may be possible to reduce production time by up to 10 hours!

Chickpea Pressure Cooking

This stage eliminates the need to pre-soak the chickpeas and shortens the traditional cooking time; raw chickpeas are automatically added into hot water and cooked under pressure, under closely controlled conditions for a short time period.

Chickpea Vacuum Cooling

Immediately after brief QA checks are completed, the chickpeas are vacuum transferred into the cooling chamber where they are subject to high vacuum.  This high vacuum level enables the latent heat to be drawn quickly from the product, which causes the product to cool rapidly.

Typically, the whole cook & transfer cycle time takes approximately 60 minutes depending upon the chickpea softness required.

Drain & Decanting

The cooled chickpeas can then be drained, ready for transforming into hummus. Typically, the cool/discharge cycle time takes approximately 45 to 60 minutes to reach a target temperature of 5°C.

Hummus Blending

Using the BCH Optima –the ingredients can be loaded, chopped, mixed and blended  to produce the perfect Hummus texture whether smooth or coarse.  Typically, the cutting and blending cycle time is approximately 15 to 20 minutes, enabling 2 to 4 batches to be produced per hour, depending upon the hummus recipe requirements.

Total process monitoring completes the package, by using BCH FlexiChef & RMS software, which  ensures that all stage information is recorded & tracked, providing repeatable results as well as full QA compliance.

Individual batch systems are available to produce up to nominally 1250kg/batch of cooked, cooled & drained chickpeas. This machine allows far greater flexibility than continuous processing – with  the automatic sprayball it’s easy to clean down the Optima mixer between different product variants, enabling the factory to quickly change flavours, ingredients & textures without halting the upstream cooking & cooling process.

The Optima machine is also an ideal machine to use for manufacturing a whole range of alternative dips, spreads, sauces and pastes.

Contact BCH now for more details on the total process solution for Hummus production using our latest All-In-One Optima Processing System.

Photo by Monika Grabkowska on Unsplash
BCH Optima – All in one processing system
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Well Done Team BCH!

A huge thank you to the entire workforce as we prepare to despatch phase 2 of a major project for one of the UK’s most famous brands.

During the most challenging working conditions during lock down, the team here at BCH have been very busy constructing 4 x Pressure Cooking & Vacuum Cooling Systems, soon be installed in a brand new purpose built cook house which will be the largest installation of its kind.

Phase one of the project consisting of the vacuum raising and cooling plant, is now nearing completion of its installation.  The site team will start to take delivery of the cookers, coolers, platforms, pipework etc. during this week.

The quality and timely progress of this project is a testament to our dedicated workforce, who have worked tirelessly during lock down as we continue to provide equipment and services to all our customers in the UK and overseas.

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BCH Pie Filling Systems

British Pie Week!

It is British Pie Week once again and we thought we would share the nation’s top Pie Fillings for 2020.

  1. Beef and Ale
  2. Apple
  3. Chicken and Mushroom
  4. Steak and Kidney
  5. Lemon Meringue
  6. Beef Mince
  7. Apple and Blackberry
  8. Chicken and Leek
  9. Chicken and ham hock
  10. Beef and Red Wine

Pies aren’t just popular here in the UK though, Australia & Africa are also love a Pie!

Consumers across the globe are enjoying sweet and savoury pies with their fillings made to the highest quality and production standards on BCH’s advanced pressure cooking and vacuum cooling systems.

Here are just a few of the benefits gained from our systems to produce those tender melt in the mouth pie fillings…

Pressure cooking is up to 70% faster than the other solutions on the market.

  • As a result, this is the most cost-efficient production method.
  • Cheaper cuts of meat can be used to gain the same quality end product.
  • Likewise, for the vegetarian options ~ pulses, beans & chickpeas are amongst many other types of traditionally ‘long-cook’ vegetable processes benefitting from our technology.
  • Sealed cooking retains moisture and locks in the flavour and nutrients lost using atmospheric and direct steam applications.

Also, the BCH pressure cooking process is the only type that guarantees the entire contents of the process are cooked evenly and uniformly.

  • Furthermore, when linked with our Vacuum Cooling Process our customers benefit from the fastest, safest and most energy-efficient cooling system on the market.



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BCH despatch multiple cooling projects before Christmas!

It’s been a very busy last couple of days here at BCH HQ. The team have worked extremely hard to complete two cooling projects to tight delivery schedules. This resulted in the first system leaving us yesterday for the USA that comprises a twin 2800 Litre Vacuum cooling system, enabling our client to produce high quality ready meals that will be distributed all over the country. The first of its kind!

Our second delivery left just this morning comprising of 2 x 1000kg RotaChill systems and Pump Fill Stations. This solution will now provide our client with extra cooling capacity for the production of high quality ready meals to meet consumer demands in the UK’s leading supermarkets, over the busy festive period and beyond.

Merry Christmas Everybody!

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Iceland Manufacturing Pre-Delivery Validation

We recently concluded a series of final product and process validation trials of 8 Ethnic and European soups and sauces with Iceland Manufacturing and DC Norris*. The trials were conducted at the DCN Product Development Kitchen and combined Jet Cook™ & BCH Vacuum Cooling processes. They were held in advance of the installation of Iceland’s new system upgrades to ensure a smooth transition into production.

The 8 products were cooked and cooled rapidly and to excellent quality, according to the Iceland team.

*supplied by our sister company – DC Norris

iceland manufacturing bch trials

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