Sunday, July 26, 2015

Sous-Vide Meat-Loaf!!!!

That's right you read the post correctly I am making Meatloaf using a circulator!!!! I have been wanting to do this for a while now.....nah..... more like brooding over how I was going to make a Meatloaf via a Sous-Vide. How was I going to vacuum seal a hunk of meat (look in the corner of your screen) that could keep some semblance of a meatloaf? I mulled over various techniques to Sous-Vide a meatloaf but all fell short of what I thought would be adequate or noteworthy. Than I had a culinary epiphany or maybe it was a flash of light....ahhh....who cares but I remembered I made a Salami (link) using a very large casing that was waterproof. I used my Sous-Vide machine to cook it too so why not do the same for my meat loaf. Let the games begin. I used my Meatloaf recipe (Link) which is incredible if I do say myself and is perfect for this endeavor so I knew it going to taste great. So this is what I did. 
I made my normal meatloaf and shoved it into my sausage stuffer. This baby can hold 15 lbs and my meatloaf came in at 8.15 lbs (3700 g) so it had no problem. 

I used high barrier casings to stuff the meat because they are waterproof and can be used in the Sou-Vide. Don't forget you need special tools to seal casings.

Start stuffing...simple right.

I also vacuumed sealed the high barrier casing (in a vacuum bag) because I don't trust casings. During the cook time just an ounce or two spilled into the vacuum bag. Unbeknownst to me I pricked the casing. I Sous-Vide the Meatloaf for 14.5 at 58˚c (136.4˚ƒ). Note: the 14.5 is my estimate for pasteurization) After the Sv process I shocked the Meatloaf for 7 hours in an Ice-Bath and refrigerated the meat for two days. Obviously I did not need to do that but I wanted to eat it on Sunday not Friday.

The Meatloaf had been refrigerated and surely could not be eaten cold so I brought up the circulator up to 58˚c and heated the meatloaf entirely through. It took about 6 hours to bring it up to temp (not recommended by the FDA). 

I pierced the casing and drained most of the fat and purge into a bowl and used it for gravy. 

All ready for the next step.

SEARZALL to dry the surface.

I coated the Meatloaf with a Balsamic reduction mixed with Ketchup and finished it up with the Searzall. More pictures below with Review.

Review- Outstanding!!! Because of fragility concerns you have to be extremely meticulous when handling and transferring the meat. I might try this again with smaller casings. I will make several of them and freeze. Very easy to do and lots of fun too. 

Update 11/2/2016- Below is an alternate way to make Sous-Vide Meat-Loaf. I Sous-Vide the Meat-Loaf in the pans double vacuumed sealed for 6 hours at 140˚ƒ. 

After the SV process I gave the Pans a quick dip in an ice-bath to drop temp down quickly. The ML was then un-molded and smeared with a Ketchup, Balsamic Vinegar and Brown Sugar topping. I cranked up my Weber Genesis to 700˚ƒ plus degrees and finished them in about 5 minutes. 


All cooked

Friday, July 24, 2015

Sous-Vide Beef-Back-Ribs

This will be a very short post because it's so very easy to do.
Purchase Ribs!!! 
Unpackage Ribs....yea I am being a smart ASS. 
Using your favorite Rub plus sugar (I prefer Brown) coat your ribs thoroughly. 
Vacuum Seal and place in refrigerator for 24-36 hours. Don't skip this step!!! It's essential!!!! That's if you want them to taste great. Ok now the important part!


Sous-Vide at 149˚ƒ for 48 hours. Shock in ice-bath and refrigerate until you want to BBQ. 
Out of the refrigerator on to my Weber Smokey Mountain Smoker (choose the wood you like to use). I like to coat my ribs with BBQ sauce. This is not essential just a preference. They're smoke at between 160-200 degrees for about 2.5 hours. I add cold water to the trough to keep the temp down in the smoker. Since the ribs are already cooked to perfection smoking them at low temps adds lots of smoke and color without cooking them.

Gratuitous pictures to follow with review at bottom.

Review- Absolutely perfect!!! I Won't change a thing!!! So why did I chose 149˚ƒ? My experience has taught me that this temp is perfect to render down the fat and connective tissue. I have SV ribs at 131˚ƒ and 140˚ƒ and and although they turned out pretty darn good they were far from perfect. The majority of the connective tissue rendered down but the fat stayed the course. If you like biting into globs of fat use a lower temp. If you like succulent ribs that are basted in its own fat use a higher temp like I did. I've been asked before to compare SV-Smoked ribs to the more traditional Low and Slow method. The SV version is better. The meat is comes out perfect every time. Yes they have the traditional bark too, although not pronounced. The traditional way would take a very long time and not add any more smoke flavor. After a couple of hours of smoke the meat stops taking on smoked....unless of course you keep the ribs wet. Anyhow this is a superior way of cooking Beef Ribs. 

Sous-Vide Beef-Back-Ribs Revisited
July 2017