For those of you unfamiliar with Sous-Vide it's a method of cooking food in an airtight plastic bag that sits in a temperature controlled vessel in circulating water.
Cooking Sous-Vide is straightforward. You seal food in a plastic bag, place bag in temperature controlled water bath, when food reaches your target temperature or time, take it out and give it a quick sear to finish if desired. So to put it another way you are cooking the food at the temp you will be serving it at. Simple right?
Cooking Sous-Vide produces culinary masterpieces that are virtually unattainable to produce by traditional cooking methods.
The picture in the upper left (Tri-Tip) side of the blog is one of the first things I cooked and allows me to point out some advantages and limitations of the Sous-Vide method of cooking.
- No Carry over cooking
- Uniformly cooked food always Edge to Edge
- Holding food at specified temp without over cooking.
- Cook at lower temps and pasteurize food simultaneously
- A recipe can be duplicated 100% of the time.
- Cooking large amounts of food in advance and heating up days later using Sous-Vide with no loss of quality.
- No more Dry edges or rare centers
- No browning or Maillard Reaction
- Pre-planning required.
- Cooking process is long
Now for the Sous-Vide method of cooking that has revolutionized the world. We cook the steak in a water bath of 129 degrees. The steak will never go beyond 129 degrees. All we do after it is done cooking is brown the outside which take only a minute or two (see my T-Bone). Creating the maillard reaction (browning) is easy and only requires intense heat. You can use a hot skillet, a grill or a butane torch.
What Sous-Vide machine would I recommend? I have been blessed with two of them that I just love.
Chef series by Poly-science is is a top of the line unit and sits in many restaurants. I love this unit. It is accurate to 1/10 of 1 degree (30 Liter capacity). I use the polycarbonate containers that polyscience carries on there website.
I did a lot of research on this unit before choosing. There were three to chose from and I chose this Sous-Vide by Anova (20 Liter capacity max)I connect it to different containers and stock pots.
What else do you need? I would suggest reading and reading before you jump in.
The Poly-Science App for the I-phone and I-Pad makes things very easy. Plug in some numbers and it gives you temps and times. Very user friendly.
A practical guide to Sou-Vide is a great place to start too. Douglas Baldwin is an expert in the field. Click the link above to find out more.