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As the gift giving season approaches it can be hard to figure out what to get the cooks in your life. Here are a few of our recommendations, both in and out of sous vide. We hope you enjoy our Cooking Sous Vide Holiday Gift Guide.
Want to get someone in your life started on sous vide but can't quite afford the professional equipment? There are a few easy ways to give them the gift of sous vide.
Sous Vide Supreme makes two lower cost options. The original and the Demi. The original Sous Vide Supreme is slightly larger and goes for $400 while the Demi is $300. They are also running several holiday specials.
PolyScience has come out with a unit for the home cook called the PolyScience Creative Series. FusionChef is also coming out with a unit for the home cook but we haven't been able to test one out yet.
Another great way to get them started is through a temperature controller like Sous Vide Magic. They can hook it up to an existing crock pot or rice cooker and will be all set for sous vide. It is only $160 and you can always get a cheap crock pot if they don't have one already.
Learning Sous Vide
Know someone who is interested in learning more about sous vide? Our Beginning Sous Vide book will take them through the whole process, from equipment selection through cooking 100 recipes. It's available as a paperback, PDF, or for the Kindle.
Finally, if someone you know has been trying sous vide but is looking for some different recipes then our Sous Vide Grilling can help them out. It is also available as a PDF.
Sous Vide Supreme also has several sous vide cookbooks that are shorter and focused around a single subject. You can view them here.
Sous Vide Add-Ons
Here are three ideas for the experienced sous vide cook in your life.
If they are still using Ziploc bags then a FoodSaver Vacuum sealer can be a great gift. Here is a good model for under $100.
For an even better sealing experience you can look into a chamber vacuum sealer. The VacMaster Portable Sealer is highly regarded.
If they have an immersion circulator but are still using it in their everyday pots then you can look at getting them some sous vide containers. These containers are great for saving counter space and keeping their pots free. Here is a large bin and a smaller one. There are also lids that you can get for them which are very nice.
Another staple of the sous vide cook's tool chest is a good torch for searing food. The Iwatani is considered one of the best and comes highly reviewed. Amazon has the torch for sale for around $30.
There are many, many great cookbooks available and here are just a few of our favorites.
Our first book about modernist cooking covers many of the popular modernist techniques such as gelling, spherification, and foams. It also explores modernist ingredients like agar, sodium alginate, tapioca maltodextrin, and xanthan gum. It is all presented in an easy to understand format along with more than 80 recipes and photographs.
We might be biased but we think it's be best way to learn about modernist cooking. And at only $25 it's the perfect gift for anyone in your life who loves to cook.
For the person who loves to try new things and wants to know why certain recipes work then Ideas in Food is a great gift idea. It compiles most of the information from the same-named blog in one handy place, including many thoughts on modernist cuisine dishes. And for a huge look at why recipes work we turn to the original, the Cook's Illustrated Cookbook which has 2,000 recipes from the last 20 years of their magazine.
Whatever you want to call it, the new cooking techniques are pretty amazing. If you know a chef who is interested in finding out more there are several "starter" kits including the Cuisine R-EVOLUTION which comes with 5 chemicals, 5 tools and a DVD. Another decent kit is the Kit Artistre, which comes with 50 grams of 12 different chemicals. Either kit is enough for the aspiring modernist chef in your life to get started.
Dehydrating food is an interesting part of modernist cuisine (see shrimp in cocktail leather) and it is one that has many other uses such a beef jerky, fruit leathers, and "sun dried" tomatoes. There are many options available but this is the one we use and is only $50.
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