Thursday, May 12, 2016

Warm Aging Trip-Tip with Fish Sauce

My results were so good with my Crazy Sous-Vide Meat Aging Experiment I just had to try it with a Tri-Tip. I won't go into all the crazy specifics but if you want a lot of details click on the link above. I make Tri-Tip at least twice a month so you know I just had to try this wild and crazy technique on this hunk a meat. 
For this crazy experiment I used 3% Fish Sauce and 2% Montreal Steak Seasoning. The Tri-Tip was coated with the Fish Sauce using a BBQ Brush. Anyhow after applying the sauce I sprinkled on the MSS. 

Note: Try to avoid getting fish sauce on your hands if you can. I used latex gloves to avoid that horror. 

The Tri-Tip was placed in freezer for a while so the fish sauce would harden. I was able vacuum seal the Tri-Tip up without worrying about the fish sauce being sucked up into the machine. Now comes the waiting game. Place Tri-Tip in refrigerator for 3 days. 

Sous-Vide at 104˚ƒ for 3 hours. This is the Warm-Aging part. I then cranked up the Sous-Vide to 133˚ƒ and continued cooking for 7 1/2 hours. Note: In the previous experiment using steaks that were 1.5 inches thick steaks I Sous-Vide at 104˚ƒ for 90 minutes. 

This picture represents the finished Sous-Vide Tri-Tip. At the end of the cooking process I Cold Shocked and refrigerated. 

A couple of days later we had it for dinner. Tri-Tip retherm, dried off very well, no-salt seasoning sprinkled on and browned in a very very hot skillet. 

Review at the bottom of the gratuitous pictures. 

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Review- Awesome Tri-Tip. The Warm-Aging process really helped make this a tender piece of meat. The texture was perfect. The experiment was really about combining the Fish Sauce with the Warm-Aging process to see if I could increase the Beef Flavor (UMAI) and produce a very tender piece of meat......SUCCESS. One might think that the Sous-Vide alone could have made this meat very tender too but that would be only half the story. I have made countless Tri-Tip's using all kinds of submerged times. I have Sous-Vide Tri-Tips with times of 6-24 hours and I am here to confess that nothing compares to the Warm-Aging process. You cannot duplicate the Warm-Aging process by simply cooking it longer in the Sous-Vide. And long cooks in the Sous-Vide can have diminishing returns too. Depending on the fat content you could end up with a mushy piece of meat that is also dry. 

Now on to the Montreal Steak Seasoning. Was it needed. Not really. It was awesome though. I should have used 1%-1.5% MSS instead of the 2%. 

Also using using .20% -.25% of just plain salt would have sufficed too. Normally I use .60% salt to dry brine but since the Fish Sauce has salt in the product .20% - .25% would have been perfect. 
The Tri-Tip had the extra beefy flavor I was going for using the Fish Sauce. My daughter commented that it tasted to beefy and it made her feel guilty. I asked her to clarify her statement. The extra beefiness increased her awareness that she was eating a COW. Ha..ha...ha...Mission accomplished.  Anyhow to avoid the extra-extra beefy flavor maybe use 2% instead of the 3% I used. If you're making this for the first time I would not use Montreal Steak Seasoning but maybe .20%-.25% salt instead. The 3 days of dry-brining under refrigeration is absolutely necessary. 

Update- 9/18/2016 : I used the Red-Boat Fish Salt at 1% and it was simply divine. 

Update- 10/26/2016 : Submerged times have been updated. I made Tri-Tip 4 separate times in Sept and reexamined my Submerged times with the help of my kids and wife. 

Sous-Vide at 104˚ƒ for 3 hours and 40 minutes. This is the Warm-Aging part. I then cranked up the Sous-Vide to 133˚ƒ and continued cooking for 6 hours. These new times created what I think is the best texture and juice retention. 

Previous times were 7.5, 9, 12 and 14.