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Sous Vide Sausages


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#1 Merkinz

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 02:00 PM

Hey Everyone,

I'd like a bit of advice on cooking sausages Sous Vide, specifically I will be cooking Boerewors and maybe a little Bratwurst in the next couple of days, but I've found very little advice in general on this method.

Boerewors
We often get flat coils of boerewors vac packed from the butcher. These go on the BBQ until the fat melts, blisters under the casing and then fountains across the porch. At this point the sauage is about done and delicious. However I want to cook this thing sous vide followed by a quick sear on a hot grill. So my questions are:
- What temp range should I be shooting for? And how long?
- Can I simply cook in the vac bag the butcher packs it in?
- Would it taste better if re-bagged it with some seasonings / liquids?
- Any other tips with this specific sausage?

Bratworst
We eat less Bratwurst than Boerewors but we still enjoy it! Similarly does anyone have any tips on cooking this that may differ from Boerewors? I plucked the following from some comment on a website and thought it sounded quite interesting. Has anyone tried this or anything similar?:
I have cooked bratwurst sous vide a few times now, and it turns out great. I put fresh, raw brats in a ziplock bag with beer (beer left out overnight so it’s flat), throw some onions in, seal the ziplock bag while getting air out (explained on other sites) and put in waterbath at 140F for 2-4 hrs. About 30 min into cooking them, you have to open bags to let air out, because both the beer and the onions release gas into the bag, but it’s not a big deal. When you’re ready to serve them, just throw them on the grill at high heat for 1-2 min to brown them. It’s a similar concept to poaching brats in beer, but this way doesn’t have the potential to overcook them if you let them sit on the stove for too long.

Other Sausages
I'd be interested in any other tips / stories / experiences on cooking sausages sous vide. :)

Cheers.

#2 rotuts

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 02:33 PM

Ive done sausage SV for some time.

I do them 140 for 4 hrs.

chill/freeze etc.

i then reheat and torch.

#3 ChrisTaylor

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 02:57 PM

The above except I deep fried them instead of torching them. I was even cooking boerwors. The butcher's packaging may/may not be heat safe (altho' I suspect it'll be okay). No need to add extra flavourings--save sauce for service, if people want it. To be honest I prefer the texture of sausages cooked slow and slow in a pan or on a barbecue. I'd slice the wors into segments as the classic coil arrangement hampers even browning.

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#4 Twyst

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 03:49 PM

I just go 145 for an hour to bring them up to temp, then sear when its service time.

#5 OliverB

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 03:58 PM

don't they turn out much too fatty SV? In the pan or on the cue they loose a lot of fat while cooking, which seems to be part of the idea, I'd be concerned that I get something way too greasy SV?

I might try it now though, this makes me curious.
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#6 group0

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 09:08 PM

Recently tried a tukey bratwurst; nothing fancy. Prep and cook as follows:
  • the sausages are vacuum sealed five to a pouch with a pinch of salt and pepper
  • cook at 150F to 160F (no P.I.D. yet, just digital thermometer) for four hours
  • remove the pouch and chill in ice bath (~38F)
  • cut open pouch; rinse sausages with tap water and pat dry with paper towel
  • place sausages in pre-lined (paper towel) pyrex container with air tight lid and place in refrigerator
  • save stock for later use
When ready to serve, I brush coat a fry pan with a small amont of olive oil mixed with the stock, (saved earlier) and bring the pan up to a very high heat. Place meat in pan for about two minutes, stirring constantly. This no doubt, will seem a bit bland to a lot of folks so add spices as you like.

Edited by group0, 23 December 2012 - 09:11 PM.

SIMPLICITY is the SOUL of design.

ThicknessTemperatueTime

Ed Bloom - San Antonio.TX


#7 gfweb

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 07:23 AM

What advantage does SV offer for sausages?

#8 rotuts

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 07:57 AM

ease for 'bulk' cooking, pasteurization, etc. the usual. all the flavor stays in the bag.

browning, up to you later.

#9 group0

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 10:27 AM

ease for 'bulk' cooking, pasteurization, etc. the usual. all the flavor stays in the bag.

browning, up to you later.


I also like the quality of uniformity and lack of variaion of the cooking process through the breadth of the sausage. As rotuts mentioned, bulk cooking is a great advantage. A few hours on Saturday and Sunday doing all the usual prep work followed by cooking, flash chilling then freezing and we are good to go (eat) for the rest of the week.

SIMPLICITY is the SOUL of design.

ThicknessTemperatueTime

Ed Bloom - San Antonio.TX


#10 rotuts

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 10:41 AM

" A few hours on Saturday and Sunday doing all the usual prep work followed by cooking, flash chilling then freezing and we are good to go (eat) for the rest of the week."

year?

( 3.5 mil bags )

Edited by rotuts, 24 December 2012 - 10:54 AM.


#11 group0

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 01:00 PM

:huh: uh, a year?? Geez! How do you freeze you food, LN2 ? (kidding) Total prep time minus the cooling is about ~ 2.5 hours for a weeks worth of meals. I usually get the bags ready on Saturday using roll bags and impulse heat sealer with cutter.

SIMPLICITY is the SOUL of design.

ThicknessTemperatueTime

Ed Bloom - San Antonio.TX


#12 rotuts

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 03:07 PM

It you get the thicker bags, which there will be no freezer burn, then they keep "forever" in a good cold freezer.

Im not sure how you cool your SV:

I do it this way:

very cold water from the tap, full up! based on how big your kitchen sink is

put the stuff in there for 10 min or so, drain then get your ice on a fresh cold water, then ad the ice to just cover the stuff.

ice + SV should just barely cover your SV.

after a period of time, dry the bags and put in the coldest part of your Refirg.

#13 group0

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 09:25 PM

I take the bags directly to an ice bath (unless serving right away) and chill to 38o C (refrigerator temperature). The bags are dried then transferred to the freezer (set at 5o F) for long term storage.

SIMPLICITY is the SOUL of design.

ThicknessTemperatueTime

Ed Bloom - San Antonio.TX


#14 Ranz

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Posted 25 December 2012 - 04:57 AM

I've done pork sausages SV and they were very good. Quick browning afterward.

don't they turn out much too fatty SV? In the pan or on the cue they loose a lot of fat while cooking, which seems to be part of the idea, I'd be concerned that I get something way too greasy SV?

I might try it now though, this makes me curious.


I prefer them, and even when making sausages normally I don't pierce them, too much flavour is lost this way. Just don't buy sausages that are too fatty and it'll be OK.

#15 Merkinz

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Posted 25 December 2012 - 10:40 AM

Thanks for all the replies :) I'm gonna drop a few in the bath this afternoon... Will report back.

#16 nickrey

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Posted 25 December 2012 - 06:13 PM

I've done pork sausages SV and they were very good. Quick browning afterward.


don't they turn out much too fatty SV? In the pan or on the cue they loose a lot of fat while cooking, which seems to be part of the idea, I'd be concerned that I get something way too greasy SV?

I might try it now though, this makes me curious.


I prefer them, and even when making sausages normally I don't pierce them, too much flavour is lost this way. Just don't buy sausages that are too fatty and it'll be OK.

If you've ever made sausages, you will know that they need around 30% fat or they become dry and inedible. Cooking such that you remove fat leads to the inevitable outcome. The only way I've found to reduce fat is to use some tofu as a substitute for part of the fat; it works to keep the product moist and has a similar mouth feel to the fat.

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#17 radtek

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Posted 27 December 2012 - 05:14 AM

I make my own sausage. Ruhlman's garlic sausage was my first try at SV with them. They were held at 150F for about 2.5 hours then seared quickly in a pan. I thought they were a little dry. The third attempt was my hot tomato sausage held at 130F for 2 hours and then I raised the temp to 150- whereupon I fell asleep on the couch... So the sausages were at 150 fro the extent of my hour nap. Turned out sort of rubbery...

The second go at sausage SV was some Vietnamese garlic-ginger sausage right in the sealed pack they were sold in. Turned out excellent when done at 150 for 2.5 hours and then quickly chilled.

It's great approach for commercial packs of hot-dogs etc where one can just drop the sealed pack in the hot water and when ready disgorge from the packaging and serve. No mess.

#18 Baselerd

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Posted 27 December 2012 - 08:09 AM

If you want less fatty sausage you can always add a binding agent such as Activa and use less fat, although I would guarantee that you'll miss the fat...