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Larder, Garde Manger, Cold kitchen

          The term Garde Manger originally identified a storage area. Preserved foods such as: Hams, sausages, bacon, cheese, etc. were held in this area, cold foods for Banquets and Buffets are arranged here. Over the years this term evolved to mean more than just a storage area. It now, also indicates a station in the professional kitchen, responsible for preparing Cold foods, Buffets, Decorative pieces, etc. and it’s Chefs who prepare them.

           Definition: The Larder is a department set aside for the storage of all perishable foods both raw and cooked and is also used for processing and preparation of all cold items served to the.

         Functions: The Larder or Garde Manger or Cold Kitchen is a department in the professional kitchen for:

  1. The storage of all perishable raw food items which needs a storage temperature of minus-18 degree C.
  2. The storage of all prepared and cooked items like cold appetizers, cold meats, cold sauces, salads etc. and all cold items found on the Menu.
  3. In order for the Larder to function properly it is essential that the Larder is separate from the hot Kitchen and is located in a cool place but not very far. It must be well lit, airy and well ventilated; it must be sufficiently spacious for staff to carry out their duties in a hygienic and efficient manner. And it must be equipped with the necessary fittings, plant and machinery, tools, etc. in accordance with the and / or quality of work.

Sub-Sections of the Larder Kitchen
           Its main responsibility is to cater to the requirements of the Hot Kitchen for raw materials such as fish fillets, steaks, etc, and to supply the finished products as required by the Room Service, Buffets, Banquets, etc, for all cold dishes.
            The Sections of the Larder can be divided depending on the volume of work into:-


                      The Area which processes raw materials like meat, fish, etc, is the Butchery and the Fish Mongery. Basic cuts are produced, marinated, roasted, smoked, or poached over here. The portion or cuts or joints are prepared according to the demands from the different outlets with- in the hotel.

The following products are produced:-

1.       Gelatine products:

a.       Aspic

b.      Mouses, Mousseline

c.       Colees

d.      Chaufroid sauces

e.       Cold soups

2.      Marinated Products:

a.       Salads

b.      Brines and Cures

c.       Pickled products

d.      Smoked Products

3.      Forcemeats for Galantines, Pâtés, Sausages, Terrines, Quenelles, Timbales, Roulades, etc.

4.      Piece Montee or Centerpieces or Non-Edible Displays:

a.       Ice carvings

b.      Tallow sculpture

c.       Salt dough sculpture

d.      Fruit and vegetable displays

e.       Pastillage

f.        jelly logos

g.       Thermocol displays

5.       Cold Hors d’oeuvres

6.      Sandwiches

7.       Specialty items such as, Caviar, Oysters, Snails, Foe gras, cheese, etc.


Large or heavy duty equipment

1) Buffalo Chopper or bowl chopper
2) Mincing machine
3) Bone saw machine
4) Gravity slicer or meat slicer
5) Vegetable processor
6) Dough mixer
7) Vacuum packing machine
8) Sandwich counter
9) Hanging rail system.
10) Sausage stuffer
11) Smoking machines
12) Grinding machine
13) Refrigerator
14) Walk in
15) Steel work tables
16) Weighing scale
17) Salamander
18) Butcher
s blocks
19) Fish kettle
20) Steam kettle

Tools and small equipment

1) Zester
2) Channeller
3) Can and bottle openers
4) Corer
5) Pitters
6) Egg slicer
7) Mandolin slicer
8) Butcher
s chopper and cleavers
9) Boning knife
10) Filleting knife
11) Oyster knife
12) Buntz knife or wavy knife
13) Cheese knife
14) Mezzaluna or mincing knife
15) Sieves
16) Chinois
17) Pie moulds
18) Terrine moulds
19) Trauchelard
20) Larding needles
21) Trussing needles
22) Perissienne scoops
23) Steak hammer
24) Meat thermometers
25) Brining syringe & pump

Duties and responsibilities of the Chef Garde Manger:
1) He is responsible directly to the Chef de Cuisine.
2) He is responsible for all perishable and frozen foods stored in the Larder.
3) He is responsible for all cold foods that are issued from the Larder.
4) He is responsible for supplying different cuts, joints, etc. of meat and fish as required by the outlets.
5) He is responsible for all the staff in the Larder and their Training.
6) He is responsible for Hygiene in the larder as per H.A.C.C.P. standards.
7) He is responsible for maintaining Larder control, like checking for quality and quantity, storing, keeping records of issues, daily stock sheets, etc.
8) He is responsible for controlling pilferage.

Essentials of Larder Control:
1) All invoices to be checked for quality and quantity against goods delivered to the Larder.
2) To ensure that all goods received must be stored at the right place and at the right temperature.
3) Portion control while pre-preparation must be carried out to ensure „yield
and required number of portions.
4) Stock of food both raw and cooked must be regularly turned over. (FIFO).
5) Do not over stock.
6) Food items stored must be protected from vermin and pest.
7) Proper record of issues from the Larder both raw and cooked.
8) A daily stock / consumption sheet to be maintained.
9) Ensure complete hygienic standards are followed as per H.A.C.C.P.
10) Precautions must be taken to avoid pilferage.


Brines and cures or salting is a method of preserving food and has been practiced since antiquity. Probably the first preserved foods may have come about by accident- fish drying on the boats or ships in the middle of the sea, dried for future use.




The salt most commonly used the World over is the common salt or Sodium Chloride. Salt changes foods, by drawing out water, blood and other impurities. In doing so, it preserves them, making them less susceptible to spoilage and rot.

The important role played by salt is:-

  • OSMOSIS– is the movement of water through a semi-permeable membrane, such as the cell walls of plant and animal, in order to equalize the concentrations of a solute (typically salt) on both sides of the membrane. This is known as osmotic pressure. Plant and animal cells contain relatively weak solutions of natural salts. Bacteria and other micro nutrients thrive in such solutions, drawing in nutrients through the cell walls. If however these cell walls are exposed to a strong salt solution the outward osmotic pressure created by the strong solution prevents them from feeding and thus from reproduction, there by their activity is inhibited and decay is prevented.
  • DEHYDRATION: The presence of „free‟ water is one of the indicators of a food’s relative susceptibility to spoilage through microbial action. In order to increase the shelf life it is important to remove as much excess water as possible. Salt has a dehydrating effect on foods by attracting the free water and making it unavailable to microbes. Exposure to air or heat for controlled periods allows the water to evaporate, reducing the overall volume and weight of the food.
  • DEHYDRATION: The presence of „free‟ water is one of the indicators of a food’s relative susceptibility to spoilage through microbial action. In order to increase the shelf life it is important to remove as much excess water as possible. Salt has a dehydrating effect on foods by attracting the free water and making it unavailable to microbes. Exposure to air or heat for controlled periods allows the water to evaporate, reducing the overall volume and weight of the food.
  • FERMENTATION: Decay in foods is also caused by enzymes naturally present in foodstuff as well as by living micro-organisms. Salt stops all enzymatic action by upsetting the electrical balance of the liquid in which they act. The strength of the salt solution is important. Some micro-organism can tolerate strong solutions of salt. Among these are certain lactic acid producing bacteria, which, rather causing decay, bring about beneficial fermentations. For this reason just the right amount of salt is used so as to kill all harmful pathogens and allowing these to grow. The lactic acid produced by these bacteria, itself safeguards it from bad bacteria. Eventually the acid becomes so concentrated that even these bacteria die and fermentation stops ant the food keeps, however the foods flavour is changed.
  • DENATURING PROTIENS: salt inevitably changes the structure of proteins in food. Smooth foods become grainy and firm foods may soften.



For thousands of years humans have been eating meat cured with unrefined salt. Two special mixtures are generally used for curing purposes:

Tinted Cure Mix (T.C.M.) or Pink Cure or Prague Powder

Prague Powder is a commercially-sold salt mixture used in preserving meat. It is a generic term, not a trademarked name. The mixture is sold dyed pink to avoid confusion in homes with table salt.

The mixture contains nitrites to give meat its pink colour, and prevent botulism. The nitrites break down into nitric oxide and then dissipate. Ultimately, what is produced in the meat is nitric oxide, which combines with myoglobin protein to give a pleasing red or pink colour to the meat.


Two versions of Prague Powder are sold –


Prague powder #1

Prague powder #1 is 1 part (6.25%) sodium nitrite to 15 parts (93.75%) salt, plus anti-caking elements.

It is used for all curing other than dry cure. You use 1 teaspoon for 5 pounds (2 kg) of meat, or 100g per 100 pounds (45 kg), and mix it with cold water to use.

Prague powder #2

Per pound (16 oz) (450g) of Prague powder #2, there is 1 oz (6.25%) sodium nitrite, .64 oz (4%) sodium nitrate, 14.36 oz (89.75 %) salt, and anti-caking elements. It is mostly for dry curing (e.g. products that require no cooking, refrigeration or smoking.) These meat products typically take a longer time to cure. You mix with cold water to use, using 1 teaspoon for 5 pounds (2 kg) of meat, or 100g per 100 pounds (45 kg).



Ordinary white sugar and other forms of sugar, including corn syrup, honey, and maple sugar is used in some cures. Using less sweet forms of sugar, such as corn syrup and dextrose, provides the advantage of sugar without adding too much sweetness.

Sweeteners are used for:-

  • Overcoming the harshness of salt in the cure.
  • Balance the overall flavour.
  • Counteract bitterness.
  • Help stabilize colour in cured meats.
  • Increase water retention in the finished product.
  • Provide a good nutrient source for fermentation.



Nearly any spice or flavourings that are used in cooking may be used in curing. Some traditional herbs and spices used are garlic, pepper, coriander, caraway, nutmeg, mace, dry mustard, cinnamon, all spice, cardamom, etc. in addition, ingredients such as dry and fresh chillies, infusions and essences, wines and vinegars may also be incorporated to give a contemporary appeal.


Curing is done for the following reasons:-

  • For fixing of colour so as to give meat a nice colour. The nitrous oxide obtained from reduction of nitrite reacts with haemoglobin and myoglobin to form nitric oxide haemo or myoglobin, which upon heating or maturing is converted to the bright pink nitrosylmyochromogen.
  • To alter and improve flavour.
  • Provides antioxidant function.
  • Provides protection from Clostridium Botulism.
  • To retard the development of rancidity.
  • To make the texture rougher.
  • To improve shelf life.



The two basic methods of cures are DRY CURES and WET CURES or BRINES.


Probably the oldest method still used. In a dry cure the cure ingredients are mixed together and packed or rubbed over the food product to coat it completely. The length of time required for dry curing meats depends on their thickness. Whole Joints may take as long as 45 days, in such long cures the food is repeatedly turned and rubbed with the cure mixture in order to maintain uniform contact.



When salt and other curing agents are dissolved in water you get brine. To make brine you may use hot water or even bring the brine to simmer to infuse the spices or other aromatics. However the brine must be thoroughly chilled before you use it to cure foods. The simplest way to use brine is to immerse the food in brine, may be by using weights and let it soak until the cure is complete. However, brine may take a long time to penetrate to the center of large items such as ham. To hasten the process brine may be pumped or injected into the meats to make sure it penetrates evenly. After injecting the Joint may then be soaked in brine as well. Commercial operations use multiple needle injection method. The length of time required for wet curing depends on the size and thickness of the item. Fresh brine should be made for each batch of cured items, do not reuse brines.



Before cured foods are smoked, they should be allowed to air dry long enough to form a tacky skin, known as pellicle. The pellicle plays a key role in producing excellent smoked items. It acts as a protective barrier for the food and also plays a role in capturing the smoke’s flavour and colour. The exterior of the item must be sufficiently dry if smoke is to adhere.






Smoking has been used as a way of drying and preserving food since prehistoric times. Smoking does have some preservative effects, but for modern cooking, it is more important for the flavours that it gives to meats, poultry and seafood. Even smoked chesses and vegetable are relished for their special flavours.


Basic rules for smoking:-

  1. Do not smoke meats, poultry and fish that have not been cured, without the preservative effects of curing, smoking could be unsafe.
  2. Foods must be air dried after curing and before smoking.
  3. In order to smoke foods a “Smoker” is necessary. The basic feature shared by each type of smoker is a smoke source, a smoke chamber where the food is exposed, circulation and ventilation.
  4. The wood used for smoking could be Hickory, Oak, Walnut, Chestnut, apple, wood from citrus trees, etc. In order to produce a rich, aromatic smoke soft woods must be avoided.
  5. In addition to various hardwoods other flammable materials like teas, herbs, stems, whole spices, corn husks, fruit peels and peanut shells, may be added. Wood must be free from oil or charcoal.



There are two types of smoking; they are Cold smoking and Hot smoking. In cold smoking the temperature inside the smoke house is kept at or below 30 degree Celsius. At these temperatures, the food take on the flavour of the smoke but are not cooked.

In hot smoking the temperature in the smoke house may be as high as 90 degree C, for fish and poultry. These temperatures are high enough to cook the foods being smoked. Higher temperatures tend to cause excessive shrinkage. Foods may be hot smoked until they reach an internal temperature of 150 to 163 degree C, to ensure that they are fully cooked.

What is HACCP?

What is HACCP?

          HACCP is an acronym for the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point system. HACCP is a preventative system that is used in the food industry to help ensure food safety. The basis for HACCP is to identify potential hazards associated with food production and preparation, and to develop mechanisms to eliminate or control these hazards. HACCP can be applied to all areas of food production, from the farm to the homes of consumers. HACCP is important to all segments of the food industry.

[           During the past twenty years, most HACCP programs have been dedicated to food processing plants which are in the “middle” of the food production chain. More recently, the food industry has realized the importance of establishing HACCP principles for the end of the food production chain: retail food and foodservice operations. The use of HACCP can complement quality control programs. When measures are taken to assure food safety, this generally results with better food quality. HACCP is not a stand-alone system! Effective cleaning and sanitizing programs and maintaining the health and cleanliness of the food handler are also important for assuring a safe, high-quality food. These programs are typically not part of HACCP programs because they are difficult to monitor, and safe limits have not been clearly established.

History of HACCP

The concept of HACCP was initiated by the Pillsbury Company. The Pillsbury Company, the National Aeronautic and Space Agency (NASA), the Natick Laboratories of the U.S. Army, and the U.S. Air Force Space Laboratory Project Group worked together on a project in food production for the NASA space program. The pathway of HACCP started in 1959 when Pillsbury was asked to produce a food that could be used under zero gravity conditions in space capsules. In 1959, they began the project knowing basically nothing about how foods might react under zero gravity conditions. The most difficult and perhaps most important aspect of the project was to develop a system to assure that food products would not be contaminated with biological, chemical, or physical hazards. Such hazards might result in an aborted or catastrophic mission.

With these problems in mind, the research groups concluded it was necessary to develop a preventive food safety system that would reduce the likelihood of biological, chemical, and physical hazards. In doing so, control could be achieved over all aspects of food production including raw material, processing, environmental conditions, personnel, storage, distribution, and transport. This approach, referred to as HACCP, worked well for the NASA space program, and was quickly adapted by the food industry.                  ]

[Para within bracket is not for exam.]

A Systematic Study

            HACCP involves a systematic study of the ingredients, the food product, the conditions of processing, handling, storage, packaging, distribution, and consumer use. The complete analysis allows for the identification of the “sensitive” areas in the process flow which might contribute to a hazard. From this information, “Critical Control Points” (CCP’s) can be determined. Areas identified as CCP’s are monitored and limits are determined to control potential hazards.

            When properly applied, HACCP can be used to control any area or point in the food system which could contribute to a hazardous situation whether it be contaminants, disease-causing microorganisms, physical objects, chemicals, raw materials, an unsafe process, package labeling, or storage conditions. There are seven principles/stages, which are used to develop and implement a HACCP program.


Seven principles/stages of HACCP.

1) Analyze hazards

2) Determine CCP’s

3) Establish critical limits for CCP’s

4) Monitor CCP’s

5) Take corrective action

6) Do record keeping

7) Verify that the system is working


1)    Hazard Analysis

            In the first step of HACCP, it is important to identify potential hazards that might be associated with growing, harvesting, raw materials and ingredients for processing, manufacturing, distribution, marketing, preparation, and consumption of the food. The types of hazards depend on the type(s) of foods and preparation practice(s) involved. The purpose of hazard analysis is to identify all potential hazards (biological, chemical, and physical) that may be associated with the flow of a given food. Some potential hazards of concern in foodservice and retail foods are identified as below –

Common hazards in foodservice and food retail operations.


Pathogenic bacteria (i.e. Salmonella spp., Staphylococcus aureus)

Viruses (i.e. Hepatitis A)

Parasites (i.e. Trichinella spiralis)

Rodents and insects (can carry bacteria, viruses, parasites)


Naturally occurring (i.e. seafood toxins)

Added chemicals (i.e. cleaning agents, pesticides)


Inherent to food (i.e. bone particles)

Non-inherent to food (i.e. glass, stone, wood)

2)    Determine CCP’s

            This step identifies critical areas or points of the flow of a food product that are required to control the identified hazards. For an area to be considered a CCP, loss of control would mean the likelihood of an unacceptable health hazard. In HACCP programs, sometimes “control points” (CP’s) will also be identified. A CCP (Critical Control Point) is different from a CP. A CCP indicates a high food safety risk (likely to occur) and a CP indicates a low food safety risk (not likely to occur). Food safety relies on identification and control of CCP’s, while; CP’s may be used for quality specifications.

CCP (Critical Control Point) or CP(Control Point)?

If control is lost, is it LIKELY that a health risk will occur?

If the answer is YES, this is considered a CCP.

If the answer is NO, this is considered a CP.


3)    Establish Critical Limits for CCP’s

            This step establishes upper and/or lower limits for each CCP. CCP’s are set for foods that can naturally carry and/or support the growth of a food borne hazard. These types of foods are called potentially hazardous foods. Limits for CCP’s to control biological hazards in foodservice and food retail operations are usually time and temperature related since they can be easily monitored. Time and temperature are also the most important factors permitting growth of bacteria. Occasionally, a measurement in pH (acidity of a food) may also be used as a critical limit. Although important, limits for chemical and physical hazards are used less often in HACCP plans for foodservice and food retail. Chemical and physical hazard levels are usually more easily monitored and controlled prior to receipt at a foodservice and/or food retail establishment. For chemical hazards, it will be important to ensure that chemicals (cleaning agents) are separated from foods. A visual inspection can be used for physical hazards.

            Time and temperature limits can be set for various areas of retail food production. They include receiving, cold storage, thawing, cooking, cooling, reheating, hot-holding, and cold holding of foods. Some suggested critical limits are included below –


Temperature/time critical limits for retail food preparation.

Receiving: Internal temperature should be <41°F for all potentially hazardous foods.

Cold Storage: Internal temperature should be maintained at <41°F for all potentially hazardous foods.

Thawing: Refrigerator thawing at <41°F is suggested. Microwave thawed foods must be cooked immediately after thawing. Cool water thawing must be done at <70°F for <2 hours from a continuously running potable water supply. Thawing at room temperature is not acceptable.

Preparation of Food: Preparation of potentially hazardous foods should be done so that food is held not between 41-140°F whenever possible. If food must be prepared between 41°-140°F, it can only be exposed in this temperature range for 4 hours total time, however, <2 hours total time is preferred.


Food type:- Internal temperature:-* Holding time

Beef roast (rare):-     130°F :-      121 minutes

Beef roast (rare):-   140°F :-    12 minutes

Eggs, meat, fish:-  140°F:-      15 seconds

Pork,game animals,ground beef:-155°F:-15 sec.

Poultry, stuffed meats:- 165°F:- 15 seconds

         [*for Microwave cooking Add 25°F]

Cooling: Potentially hazardous foods must be cooled from 140°F to 70°F within 2 hours and from 70°F to 41°F within 4 hours (6 hours total time).

Reheating: All foods must be reheated to an internal temperature of 165°F within 2 hours. Foods may only be reheated once.

Hot Holding: After proper cooking, internal temperature should be maintained at >140°F prior to being served for all potentially hazardous foods.

Cold Holding: Internal temperature should be maintained at <41°F prior to being served for all for all potentially hazardous foods.

4)    Monitoring CCP’s

            Monitoring CCP’s includes the recording of data (temperature, time) for limits which have been set for each CCP in the HACCP plan. Data collection is important to assure that CCP limits are being met. The procedures and frequency for monitoring CCP’s will differ depending on the type of food(s) and the preparation practices used.

5)    Corrective Action

            If monitoring shows that a limit for a CCP has been exceeded, corrective action procedures must be in place to assure the safety of the food. Corrective action procedures may range from discarding the product to simply cooking the product to a higher temperature. Corrective action procedures will differ depending on the type of foods and the preparation practices used.

6)    Record Keeping

            Keeping records of the HACCP plan and for monitored CCP’s is extremely important. It is a good idea to have records available for 1 year on location, and for 3 years total. Good record keeping helps to assure proper use of the HACCP program and the safety of foods that are served. During an inspection, a health inspector may ask to see records for the HACCP program.

7)    Verification

            Before, during, and after development of a HACCP food safety prevention program, it is important to verify that the program is appropriate. HACCP programs can be verified by a representative from the state or local health department.

Once the program is in place, an employee in charge of food safety and quality should be assigned responsibility for the HACCP program. This individual needs to verify that employees are performing tasks in the HACCP program. This person should also be responsible for training and educating employees on principles of food safety, food quality, and HACCP. Continuing education is the key for preventing risks of food borne illness.

            Monitoring, good record keeping, and corrective action are the heart of a HACCP program. These procedures work best when one person is in charge of verifying that CCP’s are being monitored, good records are being kept, and corrective action is taken when needed.


Steps in Designing a HACCP plan

1) Set up a HACCP team (food manager, cook, local health inspector etc.).

2) Develop a flow diagram of the process (for each food that is served).

3) Perform a hazard analysis.

4) Determine CCP’s.

5) Establish critical limits for CCP’s.

6) Establish a procedure for monitoring CCP’s.

7) Establish plans for corrective action.

8) Establish a method for record keeping.

9) Train employees to understand. HACCP plans (How and Why!)

10) Implement the HACCP plan.

11) Verify that the HACCP plan is effective.

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