Tuesday, August 8, 2017

The Ultimate Sous-Vide Tri-Tip!!!!!

After extensive research which just means I ate a huge amount of Tri-Tip's I can definitively label this post as the Ultimate Sous-Vide Tri-Tip. I've taken a few my techniques (outlined HERE) and combined them to make this perfect Tri-Tip. 
I will be adding by weight 1% Red-Boat Fish Salt. They will be dry-brined between 48-72 hours (I went for the whole 72 hours). Dry-brining with Fish Salt is a Faux aging technique. You can read about it with the link I provided above. How to calculate 1%? You can look at my notes on curing HERE. But it's very simple to do....you need a gram scale. If the meat weights 1000 grams you would multiply 1000 grams by 1% or .01 which = 10 grams. After you have calculated how much salt you need rub it into the meat. Make sure to evenly spread the salt into every nook and cranny. 

Note: If you don't have fish salt and you still one to make a kick ass Tri-Tip use .60% Kosher Salt or 1% Montreal Steak Seasoning. 

Why dry brine? Dry-Brining will denature the protein strands making them more tender and will preserve moisture. Salt will increase the flavor of the protein too. Dry-brining will force moisture to the surface of the protein and will dissolve the salt. Now comes the best part!!! All of that moisture on the surface along with the salt gets reabsorbed which unravels the protein strands (denaturing), making for a better tasting much more tender protein. More importantly these denatured protein strands will hold on to more moisture through the cooking process. 

  I have conducted several experiments with spread sheets that proves this. If you like you can read about my experiments HERE. This process takes time so if you think you sprinkle on some salt and get the same results you will be disappointed. Some will tell you that the protein takes on a cured look and feel but that is untrue. You would need about 8-10 days for that to occur and you would need a much larger percentage of salt. 

Why use fish salt? I won't go into a lot of detail here but you can read about it HERE and HERE. Suffice it to say the fish salt does two things. It dry-brines the protein and gives you a faux aging effect which amps up the flavor of the beef. Some use fish sauce which I have done many times before but through some experimentation and blind taste studies everyone preferred the fish salt. Oh and the fish salt is much easier to work with.

Note: if you don't have fish salt you can use any salt or rub with salt you want. The salt is the only thing that will penetrate. The rub is mostly a surface treatment but still damn good. Fish salt bring the Tri-Tip to the next level. 

Going to Warm Age aka Low Temp (LT) 2 Stage Souv-Vide Cooking the Meat too….. 

The story goes like this.... By bringing up the temperature of the meat to 113 ℉ Degrees for X amount of time you increase the activity of the Calpain and Cathepsin. These are the same enzymes that are present during traditional Dry-Aging that is done in Refrigerators. Of course with Warm Aging the process is hastened. Tender meat is the by product of the enzymatic process. 

And yes it's safe to do. Anything less than 4 hours is safe. Ahhhhh....do your own research. If you have a compromising immune system or suffer from an autoimmune disease I would be extra careful about my food.

Step 1- Coat protein with 1% of Fish Salt.
Step 2- Vac Seal and Dry-Brine for 72 hours. 
Step 3- Preheat Water to 116  degrees.
Step 4- Toss in Vac Bags and lower temp to 113 . (Warm Aging)
Step 5- Cook for 3 hours minutes at 113 ℉ 
Step 6- Raise temp to 133 f and cook for 7 hours. 7 hours is great but if you come across a really big Tri-Tip you might think about 8-9 hours. Note: you can expedite the temp increase by adding boiling water or have two cooking vessels. 
Step 7- Shock to lower temp. After a brief shock you can finish or shock them longer and refrigerate until you're ready to finish. 
Step 8- Take meat out of bags and dry off. I like to use a fan to ensure complete drying. 
Step 9- Place seasonings (no salt) on meat and finish anyway you want. I mostly use my Weber genesis grill which I can get up to about 700 f. Add butter or BBQ sauce which will aid you in the searing portion. You could also use mayo which is awesome or a combo of BBQ Sauce Mayo. 
Step 10- Slice across the grain. See pics at bottom. 

Ahhhh a Caveat.....

Many people love the cooking method called Reverse Sear. If you do not know what that is allow me to briefly explain. Very similar to Sous-Vide cooking but uses a traditional heat source (I use BBQ, Smoker or Grill for flavor). The protein is placed in heat source at a temp 160-225℉ (I use 180℉-200℉) and temp is slowly increase to desired internal temp. Protein is than cooled at room temp (I will place in freezer for 5 minutes first than refrigerator for 10 minutes). And than finished as desired (Grill, Pan etc). Some people love the taste of reverse sear over traditional Sous-Vide. I say you can combine both cooking methods. 

Step 7AShock to lower temp and refrigerate until for at least 6 hours.

Step 8A- Dry throughly (Step 8) and season anyway you want.

Step 8B- Place very cold Tri-Tip into alternate heat source set at 180℉. Heat Tri-Tip 15ยบ below finished Sous-Vide Temp (i.e if you SV at 133℉ choose 118℉)

Step 8B- Remove from heat source and let cool for about 15 minutes. 

Finish from Step 9- but do not add any seasonings.