I'm currently at a hotel in Spain. We are having a buffet breakfast and one of the meals are sunny-side-up fried eggs. I estimate they probably fry several hundred eggs per breakfast. I wondered how they pull it off in the kitchen, especially the "breaking eggs" part.
I can imagine two extremes:
The truth is probably somewhere in between. Anyone with mass-kitchen experience, care to enlighten me?
Chefs are really fast at cooking. It's what they do. A chef can almost effortlessly crack an egg with one-hand in about a second. Scrambled eggs would be pre-cracked and beaten prior to the cooking-shift.
For a large kitchen they would probably use a griddle for this instead of frying pans. There are griddles available about a meter across. As long as the hotel doesn't come down for breakfast en masse I imagine that would provide enough throughput.
As a chef, the bigger question I would have is how are they serving sunny-side up eggs buffet style without them breaking to pieces and making a mess in the chafing dish?
I wouldn't ever put them on a buffet or suggest doing them for a large group but it can be done. Most likely they are baking them on sheet pans in the oven or doing them in what we call "hotel pans" in a convection steamer covered with plastic wrap.
Large volume commercial kitchens will either do scrambled eggs in the oven (pour the egg mix into a greased hotel pan and stir periodically to break up and mix as the curds form) or in a bain marie where they also need very little attention and will cook to a creamy curd without getting crusty.
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