Sunday, April 19, 2015

Chicken Sous-Vide

Sous-Vide chicken has to be the easiest  thing you will ever cook. I have a wife and two kids and I love preparing this tasty meal for them in advance. It's fast and easy to do. 
 Simple to do. Start out with a whole chicken. Twenty fours in advance dry-brine  the whole chicken by coating the whole chicken with kosher salt; inside and out.
Cut out the back bone and split chicken into.
Vacuum seal. Personally I always double vacuum seal. There is no waste because I use a regular bag first then a reusable Waring bag for the second enclosure. Call me paranoid but I have had a bag or two fail during the cook and it was terrible to clean up. 
I Sous-Vide the chicken at 145 degrees for 7 hours. I always shoot for 6-8 hours. Here they are all cooked and resting until the next step.
Pr-Heat the BBQ to about 350 ish degrees. I sprayed a little oil on the breasts then applied my favorite spice rub. 
Slather the chicken with your favorite BBQ sauce and apply more rub if you want. I applied more rub but you can't see it because I forgot to take a picture of that step. 
I indirectly cooked the chicken at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes or so. Just enough to get the outside nice and pretty. 

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Turkey Sous-Vide

Delicious Sous-Vide Smoke Turkey
Tasty and so very simple to make. 
Start out with a whole turkey. Mine weighed just under 13 lbs.  Break it down to individual pieces. 
To learn how to break down a Turkey visit TURKEY BUTCHERY BY CHEFSTEPS. After you break it down give a sprinkle of salt and dry-brine for 24 hours. 
Learn about DRY-BRINING HERE (note: I always rinse after dry-brining).

Save the scraps for a turkey stock.
Sous-Vide at 140 for 8 hours.
Add extra spices. Now you have to decide what technique you are going to use to  create the maillard reaction. You can grill, pan fry or smoke etc. I chose smoking. 
I smoked the Turkey at 190 degrees for roughly an 90 min. 
 Moist white meat!!!!

Yum Yum Yum Yum Yum Yum Yum Yum!!

Note: the breast only needed 4 hours but I tossed everything in the bath for 8.  Everything came out great.

NOTE: I will probably never make a traditional turkey again. See my Turkey Roulade.

Update 11/26/15

Thanksgiving 2015 was a hit! I have made 12 Sous-Vide Turkeys to date. I think I have finally dialed in what I think is the best temp and time; for both the Dark and White meat. 

Turkey Breast Sous-Vide at 140˚ƒ for 4 hours is perfect

Dark meat came out perfect at 150˚ƒ for 6 hours. 

Let me give this caveat: All these temps and times are designed around how I want to finish the Turkey. In this case, I planned on smoking the Turkey for about 90-120 minutes at 180-190˚ƒ. When the smoke dissipates, I will crank the heat up to about 225˚ƒ to give that mahogany glaze we all love so much. 

What preceded the smoke is important too. After the Sous-Vide process I shocked the Turkey in an Ice-Bath and refrigerated overnight. If I had taken the turkey out of the SV and proceeded directly to the Smoker, the Turkey would have overcooked. Starting out with temps much lower helps mitigate the possibility of overcooking the Turkey. I also know if I placed a Turkey on my smoker with an internal temp of 34˚ƒ, it would have taken forever for the meat to come up to temp too. So what did I do?  I cranked up the Sous-Vide to about 125˚ƒ and set the Turkey in the bath for about 40 minutes. The Turkey hit the smoker registering 90˚ƒ internally. The Turkey was removed from the smoker when an internal temp of 140˚ƒ was reached. These are all techniques. If you miss one of these steps the outcome will be different. Let's say I wanted to finish the Turkey in a frying pan instead of an oven or smoker. I would have made sure that the meat was at least at 120˚ƒ before the meat would have hit the pan. Again these are my techniques.