U-Select Catering Equipment Review Show, Episode 21: Robot Coupe Countertop Veg Prep Machines

By Phil Scoble

Summary

Robot Coupe are synonymous with good preparation machines in the same way Rational are with good combis or Turbofans are with convection ovens. They’ve earned the right to that reputation: these veg prep machines are well made, simple to use and maintain, and they get the job done. Remember that you need to order the blades separately, but this means you should get exactly the machine spec you need.

Pros

Well built

Easy to use

Simple to spec with manufacturer guidelines

Good to know

Blades sold separately

Check if the machine you are buying is one, two or variable speed

Robot Coupe  – The Original Innovators

Robot Coupe is a French company that has really defined what commercial food preparation is. They produced the first commercial veg prep machines in 1963 to offer julienne, brunoise and other specialist cuts for vegetables in an automatic machine, massively reducing the labour needed for large-scale catering. They also brought the first domestic processor to market  – the Magimix.

Veg Prep

Robot Coupe have achieved 55 years on top of the market by producing machines that are hard wearing and simple to use. To the untrained eye, the design of many of these machines are virtually identical to the first ones from the 60s. But the company has spent that time refining and distilling what they do so Robot Coupe are the most efficient machines they can be.

Veg prep machines are there to do exactly what they say – prepare vegetables. They employ incredibly clever blades that can cut to any shape or size. Robot Coupe offer 55 different blades  for their veg prep machines.

An important thing to note is the countertop machines don’t come with any blades included, and not all the machines can take all the blades. Most of them have different packages of blades recommended by the manufacturer, targeted at different types of businesses.  

These veg prep machines are a perfect example of Robot Coupe’s simple ideas of efficiency and ease of use.

We’re going to look at the machines in terms of what they can do and what features you should look for and what difference they make.

– The 400 is the most popular model and is perfect for medium sized pubs and the 500mm is perfect for larger establishments with high-throughput.

– The Standard Dishwashers come in just two sizes- 400 and 500. They have one, three minute cycle.

– The Standard is, as you might expect, the basic range. They are solid, simple and dependable. You can add a drain pump and a watersofterner, which could both be vital depending on your situation, so do put some thought into whether you need them or not.

Classeq Undercounter Glasswashers Range
Merrychef Eikon e2s

The CL20 and CL40

The Robot Coupe veg prep machines start with the CL20 and the CL40,  small tabletop machines, suitable for producing food for between 20 and 80 people a day.

The difference between them is quite subtle – but it boils down to the fact that the CL20 can slice, ripple cut, grate and julienne, whereas the CL40 can also dice and do french fries. This is dictated by the number of different blade types the two machines can take.

Both are single phase and single speed.

The CL50

Next up are three machines all named CL50 – the Gourmet, the Ultra and the plain old CL50. These machine can make up to 400 meals a day.

The CL50 and CL50 Ultra are essentially the same machine, but the Ultra has a stainless steel base.

Both are single or three phase, can be bought with one or two speeds (you need to specify which you need) and both have the option of adding Robot Coupe’s mashed potato accessory. Both can be bought in single or two speed versions. You use different speeds depending on the job, with some veg you need a slower speed to get the best quality cut.

Both can fit a special mashed potato accessory, which allows you to make, rather surprisingly, mashed potato.

Robot Coupe now offer a special edition: ‘Pizza’ which comes with four discs you need to create the perfect pizza.

The Gourmet is designed to do Brunoise (small diced) veg and waffle cut  – an amazing cut that creates a textured, holed look to veg. Because of the demands of these two cuts the machine is only one speed and single phase. But it comes with the special blades for Brunoise and Waffle cuts – but if you want to do other cuts – it can fit all 55 cutting discs Robot Coupe offer – whereas the CL50  and CL50 Ultra can fit 50 of the 55 on offer.

The CL52

Finally in the countertop range there is the CL52.

This has all the same settings as the CL50, but has an extra 2 litres of capacity, which allows you to prepare veg for up to 600 meals a day of 250kg of veg an hour. It is available in 1 or 3 phase, 1 or 2 speed and can fit a mashed potato accessory and 50 of Robot Coupe’s 55 blade sets. It has a larger feed tube and a clever extra feed tube for uniform cutting of longer veg.

Conclusion

All these tabletop machines are easy to use and hard wearing. They make veg prep a pleasure and, if you buy the larger sets of blades, can prepare almost anything.

A few points to remember:

They don’t come with blades most of the time, so factor that into your budget

The CL50 and CL52 are available in 1 or 3 phase and 1 or 2 speed – apart from the Gourmet Model

The CL20 and CL40 are for businesses that serve up to 80 meals a day, the CL50 up to 400 and the CL52 up to 600.

Learn More

If you are interested in a new Robot Coupe Veg Prep Machine, have a look at our range. We offer a variety of flexible procurement methods meaning that whatever your situation, and whether you want to rent or buy, we will have something that will suit you.  Click on the link below to see our complete range of Robot Coupe Veg Prep equipment.

See our range of Robot Coupe equipment

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