Originally Posted by John Ho
Anyone here anything cook anything Sous Vide? I have a setup and vacuum machine. I've done steaks, ribs of all kinds, eggs, and pork so far. Have Keller's sous vide cookbook but haven't done any yet.
Wondering if anyone here has had success with recipes using sous vide. Any serious cooks I'm open to letting you try your stuff out on my machine if you live in Vegas like I do.
I read about doing sous vide in a cooler and decided to give it a try.
Beer Cooler Sous Vide
There's a link in the comments to an excel spreadsheet that uses the weight of the food, specific heat of the food, amount of water, and final desired temp to determine the starting temp for the water.
I started with a 3 lb round eye roast with the goal of roast beef for sandwiches. This is a fairly cheap cut which tends to be tough. I was hoping that sous vide would help to tenderize.
Seasoned with salt and pepper, put in ziplock bag, suck out air.
The calculator suggested 122 degrees water temp for a final temp of 117. I was planning on searing after that which would bring the final temp up a little more.
I ran into some temp control problems. I guess the lid of my cooler isn't very well insulated. The sides stayed cool, but the lid felt very warm, so heat was escaping. I ended up losing at least 2-3 degrees per hour.
So, I took a potful of water out, heated it up to 170 or so and added it back in. Recheck temp, repeat as necessary.
I started around 4PM with the idea that I might leave it overnight. The rapid temp drop made me give up on that plan, so around 11:30 I called it quits.
The internal temp was 118. At no point was the water warmer than 123 or lower than 115, so I think I succeeded in that respect. I would have aimed for a lower temp in retrospect.
I then seasoned with salt and pepper and seared in a cast iron skillet with a little oil until browned.
Into the fridge overnight.
The result was pretty good. Definitely rare throughout. The colors are a little off on the photo, but the overall color is closest to that deeper red area at the top left. It still needs to be sliced thinly, since it is still a tougher cut of meat.
I can't say I would do this again - the rapid temp loss was too much of a hassle for longer times. I will try this for thinner items (salmon, steak) since the time in the water bath will be shorter.