I have exciting news, I've decided to merge my two main websites, Cooking Sous Vide and Modernist Cooking Made Easy. Sous vide is a big part of modernist cooking and having all the information in one place made the most sense, as well as taking advantage of the active communities on each site. This will allow me to better focus my efforts and continue providing valuable information to you.
There are so many different things you can do with a sous vide machine that it can be hard to figure out what you want to try first. I think there's two categories of sous vide foods, things you can use sous vide to cook better, and things you can only do with sous vide. Here's some of my favorite things to do sous vide.
One of the more common questions I am asked is "What is the best way to seal your food for sous vide cooking?". There are so many options for sealing your food that it can get confusing figuring out exactly what you need. There are several ways of doing it, ranging from large chambered vacuum sealers costing over a thousand dollars all the way down to Ziploc bags from the grocery store. Here's the low down on what you'll need to master the art of sealing your sous vide food.
While a chambered vacuum sealer is the best way to do sous vide, they are several hundred dollars and overkill for many home kitchens. Many people turn to FoodSaver-type sealers, which can be convenient but they are expensive to buy bags for and can't really be used with liquids. So what is a home cook to do?
One of the areas sous vide falls short is creating that nice flavorful, brown crust on foods. Luckily there are several ways to finish of foods after they have been sous vided to create the crust without further cooking the food. The whole goal of post sous vide browning is to create the crust while heating the interior of the food as little as possible. The main keys to accomplishing this goal are dry foods, high temperatures, and short times.
Based on my testing while I was writing my book, I answer the following questions:
Hey Jason, which size of whipping siphon should I get? I'm looking at either the .5 liter or the 1 liter, what do you think is best? Do I need to get the iSi Thermo siphon? I'll normally be cooking for 4-10 people, if that matters.
I thought Thanksgiving would be a good time to launch our newest feature "Modernist Potluck". It focuses on all the great content that is available on other websites that you might not follow. I'm thankful to the all the great modernist cooks out there that make this community such a fun thing to be a part of. Some of these posts are recent and some are a little older but I hope they all help inspire you in your cooking.
The official launch for my new book is finally here!? If you want to get the most out of your whipping siphon while impressing your friends and creating unique taste sensations then Modernist Cooking Made Easy: The Whipping Siphon is for you! It's also a great holiday gift to the adventurous cook in your life.
One question I often get asked is how to marinate meats when cooking them sous vide. The question is usually whether or not you can marinate meat while it is cooking in the sous vide machine. I figured I'd answer it here so other people can weigh in as well.
For the series finale of Breaking Bad my friends are getting together and having a viewing party. I figured it just wouldn't be a party without some meth, specifically in the form of blue-raspberry meth-mallows!
I was talking to Erika Landin the other day about MasterChef. Erika is the supervising casting producer and she was discussing how they haven't had any super-strong modernist cooks on the show in the previous seasons.
One of the things that fascinates me is seeing what everyone uses as their sous vide setup. We've decided to find out how much variety is out there by holding a "show us your setup" contest over the next month.
Just take a picture or two of your sous vide setup and email them to us at firstname.lastname@example.org along with a short description of what you use. We will create a page with all the pictures and descriptions on it and we will pick two random winners who will get a copy of one of my books.
Whether you have a homemade sous vide setup or a normal sous vide machine, we want to see it!
The folks at Sous Vide Supreme have released another set of cooking videos, this time from Chef Jason Wilson. In order to see all of them you need to sign up for their newsletter, which usually has pretty good content in it. However, they did give us one to show on our site so all of you can view it.
It's for Thai Glazed Pork Ribs with Watermelon Jicama Salsa. I usually do my ribs at 135°-141°F but I might have to try them at the higher temperature. I haven't done watermelon like that either, definitely something I'll be trying this summer.
This month's contest is going to be for "Favorite Summer Sous Vide Recipes". We're looking for your favorite sous vide recipes that you love to make in summer. We'll be picking 3 winners. One for "Best Recipe", one for "Most Unique Recipe", and one random winner. Each winner will get a signed copy of either Beginning Sous Vide or Sous Vide Grilling.
To enter just go to our Sous Vide Recipes Forum and click "Add a New Topic" to enter in your recipe. You can add as many recipes as you like (each in a separate topic).
We'll also be reading the comments in each thread to help us determine what is "Best" and "Most Unique" so be sure to contribute to the threads on your favorite recipes!
Sous Vide supreme has come out with two more sous vide cookbooks. One for "Sous Vide Meat" and one for "Sous Vide Pots". I've ordered my copies and will do a proper review once they arrive but here's an overview for now.
One of the most common questions we get asked about our sous vide recipes is some variation of "the recipe says to cook it for 3 to 6 hours, but when is it actually done".
The short answer is that anytime within the given range the food is "done". As long as the food has been in the waterbath for more than the minimum time and less than the maximum time, then it is done. There isn't a specific magical moment of true doneness that can be generalized.
For those that want more information, here's the explanation why.
Thanks to everyone that participated in the Holiday Book Contest. We had a lot of new sign ups to the Sous Vide Newsletter and a ton of posts to the Sous Vide Forums, it's great to see everyone's contributions to building this community of sous vide lovers.
We're very excited to announce the launch of our Sous Vide Time and Temperature app for the Android. It's been available on the iPhone for a few months and after 1,200 downloads we've gotten a ton of great feedback and 4.5 star rating so we decided it was time to release it for the Android.
"The eGullet thread" is a much referenced and almost mythical thing in the sous vide community. It was a message thread on the eGullet website that was several hundred pages long and filled with information about sous vide and the evolution of our understanding about it.
We are happy to announce the launch of our Cooking Sous Vide newsletter!
The free Cooking Sous Vide newsletter will be sent every few weeks and each edition will contain tips, tricks, recipes, and how-to's for Cooking Sous Vide. They will also contain links to some of the best sous vide information on the internet.
Today we're happy to announce the launch of our Sous Vide Forums. We know there is a large demand in the sous vide community for a place to get together and exchange ideas and expertise with other people passionate about sous vide. We've created these forums as a way to address that need.
As we've mentioned elsewhere, we've decided to release the first 7 chapters of our new Beginning Sous Vide book as a free "Beginning Sous Vide Guide". Our goal with this guide is to compile all of the information you need to get started with sous vide at home into one place. Many people starting with sous vide have trouble finding all the information they need and we're trying to address that.
Now that it's close to Thanksgiving it's time to talk sous vide turkey. What better way to show off your sous vide machine than making a moist, perfectly cooked turkey for you friends and family. Here's a few articles and recipes to get you started on your way.
We just launched our latest iPhone app. It's not related to sous vide but it is for cooking so I figured I'd pass it on. It's called "Produce Converter" and it basically converts produce to specific measurements.
We're very happy here to announce the release of our latest project, a sous vide app for the iPhone and iPad. It's designed to be a handy time and temperature reference for when you are in the kitchen and don't want to hop on the internet to find a cooking temperature.
We'd like to introduce our newest feature to the site, our "How To" section. The How Tos are designed to be an easy way for people with sous vide questions to ask them and have them answered by the community.
We're going to try and start something new here on the sous vide blog. We come across many sous vide links that don't necessarily warrant an entire blog post but we'd like to still share them with you. We'll try to post a list of these sous vide links about once a week. So here's the first installment.
I've been very curious to check out the new Sous Vide supreme cooker but couldn't justify spending more money on sous vide equipment. Luckily, through my contact at Sur La Table I managed to borrow a unit from them that I can play around with for a few weeks. I'll post a little more about the Sous Vide Supreme as I use it over the next few weeks but I wanted to share some of my initial thoughts.
With the success of our sous vide book Cooking Sous Vide: A Guide for the Home Cook we've decided to work on a supplemental book full of sous vide recipes. We have a lot of our own recipes but we're also going to be looking to the sous vide community for your favorite recipes.
Sur La Table finally launched their sous vide line of equipment. They partnered up with Julabo, "The Temperature Control Company" to manufacture all the equipment. They have immersion circulators and heated water baths (both circulating and non-circulating) as well as many accessories.
As sous vide cooking becomes more and more common we're asked more and more about the safety concerns associated with sous vide cooking. We decided to gather links to a few of the better articles addressing these issues, namely cooking in plastic and time and temperature safety. Hopefully these articles can start answering any questions you have about the safety of sous food cooking.
I recently purchased an iSi whipping siphon for easier creation of foams and also to carbonate various liquids. One of the first things I used it for was to create whipped cream (how can you not start there!).
Fresh Meals Solutions makes one of the most affordable sous vide cooking devices with their SousVideMagic cooking controller and we got a sneak peak at their newest sous vide product, their FreshMealsMagic sous vide cooker.
Sur la Table is set to make an announcement regarding the launch of a line of sous vide equipment in the next few weeks. Their previous line was canceled when their supplier couldn't meet their "lead free" requirements.
Saw a very interesting article on how to vacuum seal marinades, sauces, or other liquids with a normal home vacuum sealer. Normally the liquid will get sucked up into the machine if you try to vacuum seal it. The people at Gothamist came up with an ingenious plan
One of the most popular methods in molecular gastronomy is the creation of foams. While they are associated with modernist cuisine, foams have been used for centuries and range from meringues and whip cream to bread and quiche. Here we will look at how to make a foam with soy lecithin.
I had read several announcements that Sur La Table was going to be releasing a line of sous vide thermal immersion circulators in November but I had yet to actually see anything on their website. I emailed their media relations department and asked about their release and they sent me a nice note back.
One of the big concerns over sous vide is how safe it actually is to cook foods at lower temperatures. Many people seem to think that it is unsafe to consume foods that have not been cooked at high temperatures. There are different concerns for restaurants and home cooks, and between food that will be served right away and food that will be held in in the refrigerator or freezer for a long period of time.
At the Caterer and Hotelkeeper Equipment and Supplies Excellence Awards the Clifton Food Range took first in the Food Preparation Equipment category. The Clifton Food Range makes digital water baths focused on sous vide and other slow cooking methods.
There is a new sous vide book announced. It is by Nathan Myhrvold, the former chief technology officer at Microsoft. Nathan has contributed greatly on the eGullet.org forums about sous vide cooking. His book is scheduled for release sometime during 2009.
More sous vide equipment, from Sur la Table and Fresh Meals Solutions, should soon be available for the home chef.
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