Enclosed Hot Dog Trailer without a Vent Hood

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EatEli
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2013/03/12 02:25:12 (permalink)

Enclosed Hot Dog Trailer without a Vent Hood

Hey guys I'm new to the forums, been looking through old posts and there's tons of great info here! I've been in this business for just over 2 years now and look forward to participating on the forum. Did a search and couldn't find to much info about this so here's my question:
 
Vent hoods are not required by my local authority and I see a few enclosed hot dog trailers around town without any type of ventilation, just an open window. I want to build or buy an enclosed trailer before the summer season and would like to do it as cheap as possible and especially avoid a big generator if I can. I've talked to my buddy who says he can build a vent using 12v car radiator fans, but I worry about operating without a proper grease trap. Obviously I don't want to be breathing in fumes all day, but is it possible to build a functional trailer to cook volumes of about 200 sausages a day without using a generator? 
#1

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    RodBangkok
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    Re:Enclosed Hot Dog Trailer without a Vent Hood 2013/03/12 03:12:06 (permalink)
    What type of cooking are you doing, and what is the product.  If your talking about steam or water bath warming already fully cooked hot dogs, then you probably won't need anything other than a simple vent fan, if your talking about grilling or frying raw sausages with a fairly high fat content then you will probably need a Type 1 hood.  Gonna depend mostly on the product and cooking process. 
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    RodBangkok
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    Re:Enclosed Hot Dog Trailer without a Vent Hood 2013/03/12 03:15:05 (permalink)
    What type of cooking are you doing, and what is the product.  If your talking about steam or water bath warming already fully cooked hot dogs, then you probably won't need anything other than a simple vent fan, if your talking about grilling or frying raw sausages with a fairly high fat content then you will probably need something like a Type 1 hood with full grease panels.  Gonna depend mostly on the product and cooking process.
    #3
    EatEli
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    Re:Enclosed Hot Dog Trailer without a Vent Hood 2013/03/12 03:58:11 (permalink)
    Thanks for responding! Health Dept requires I use pre-cooked sausages. I get par-boiled bratwurst from a local German sausage maker. So far I've only used open air set-up and grilled them. I've experimented with steaming and ran into 2 problems:
     
    1. The sausages are white which some customers find unappealing. When grilled they turn a light brown colour.
     
    2. The sausages become soft when steamed. Grilling them "firms" them up to a more desirable texture.
     
    I haven't tried a hot water bath, but I'm guessing I'd have the same problems because that's how they are pre-cooked. He also makes a smoked sausage that's brown in colour, I guess I could try steaming that one and see how it tastes (that would avoid problem 1).
     
    Steaming before grilling seems to be a solution to cook faster on high volume days, but I've preferred to go in the direction of more grill space (one of my trailers has 30' grill space). Do you think that steaming before grilling will allow me to reduce my ventilation requirements?
    #4
    RodBangkok
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    Re:Enclosed Hot Dog Trailer without a Vent Hood 2013/03/12 05:27:05 (permalink)
    EatEli
     Steaming before grilling seems to be a solution to cook faster on high volume days, but I've preferred to go in the direction of more grill space (one of my trailers has 30' grill space). Do you think that steaming before grilling will allow me to reduce my ventilation requirements?

    Very hard to say, as the fat content that's left will depend on too many factors to make a guess.  For instance if your grilling skinless chicken breast the fat plume that is generated will be much less than a burger patty.  Pretty much depends on the fat content of the par cooked product.  Most will tell you if you have a grill, griddle or any type of fryer will will need grease traps..but in a case like this with one product par cooked, hard to say.  I'd probably take a piece of grease absorbent paper and hang it above the grill, cook some up and see how fast that it gets loaded with grease.  You may also be able to tell from the amount of grease that is being rendered while grilling.  I'd probably say its not worth par cooking them again, but would need to test.
    #5
    kennyb
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    Re:Enclosed Hot Dog Trailer without a Vent Hood 2013/03/12 09:06:45 (permalink)
    you don't need a huge generator to run a few things. we have a 6x12 and it has a small honda 2000 on the tounge. works great. we run lights, vent, fridge, freezer and 2 cheese warmers with it. it runs about 6 hours on a gallon of gas. very quiet too. what about lights? you might need them.
    #6
    EatEli
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    Re:Enclosed Hot Dog Trailer without a Vent Hood 2013/03/12 23:46:47 (permalink)
    Thanks for the advice! Lights I was thinking to do on 12v.
    #7
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