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Sous Vide: Recipes, Techniques & Equipment (Part 9)

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#61 EMG

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Posted 30 August 2013 - 01:30 PM

Both Ziploc and Food Saver bags are BPA-free. Ziploc is microwave safe but not recommended for boiling. Lets not forget that Sous vide cooking never reaches boiling point.

 

Just a personal opinion (not fact): Anything is safer than a microwave.



#62 gfweb

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Posted 30 August 2013 - 01:52 PM

That said, it appears that Ziploc has made a product just for you - a hand pump that costs less than $5, and, specially designed bags in lots of sizes: gallonquart, etc.

I have one of them, but the bags are pricy, so I just use water immersion to get the air out of the bag, because I'm a cheapskate.



#63 Beusho

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Posted 30 August 2013 - 03:30 PM

I have both a foodsaver vacuum that I got at Sam's and also the zip loc hand pump that I use with food saver bags. Food saver makes both the rolls that you cut your own bags out of and heat seal with their vacuum device as well as bags with a seal and a port you use a pump for, the pump in that video is much larger than the one you can get at any Target or Wal-Mart.

 

I usually cook for 1-3 people. I don't freeze things for extended periods. The food saver bags remove just about as much air as the more expensive heat sealing counterpart in my opinion. I like food saver bags compared to the zip loc because the port seems better and the seal seems stronger. I haven't froze things more than a month or so but in my mind it doesn't seem like the zip-top bags and pump would be much worse than the dedicated heat sealing vacuum. You can also lean the bag over the counter and remove the air from liquid containing bags.

I would say start with the food saver pump (get the one at your local retailer, it's $20 and is worth it rather than the $5 pump which now tends to come apart and is slow to remove air). If you're really unsatisfied with it you can spend the >100$ for the more expensive model, 


Edited by Beusho, 30 August 2013 - 03:30 PM.

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#64 Docrjm

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Posted 30 August 2013 - 04:03 PM

Currently I use a foodsaver, purchased at costco, but have my eye on a chamber vac. Have a look at chefsteps, they use the water displacement method and ziploc bags quite a lot, despite having a chamber vac. This is done, I believe, to show that you do not need a vac sealer for basic sous vide cooking.



#65 Robenco15

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Posted 30 August 2013 - 04:36 PM

Thanks for the replies guys. I think I'm going to go the water displacement method for the time being. Not trying to buy more stuff and it should be fine. Thanks for the help guys!



#66 Beusho

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Posted 31 August 2013 - 08:55 PM

Steak and fish sauce.

 

MC recommends brushing fish sauce on steak for and letting it rest for 72 before cooking, if I'm going to cook flank steak for 18 hours can I brush it on and include the cooking time in the marinading time? e.g. I brush in on and let it rest for 54 hours, then cook it for 18. Will the cooking change the flavor of the fish sauce?


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#67 greenmonk

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Posted 31 August 2013 - 10:17 PM

If you do decide to use zip lock bags and don't mind buying a cheap vacuming device, this Kickstarter just ended, but he's going to sell them in his online store around Nov. I'm supposed to get mine by the end of Oct.

https://www.kickstar...1019/thriftyvac
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#68 KennethT

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Posted 01 September 2013 - 07:34 AM

Sous-vide Hainan Chicken?

Does anyone have any experience with this dish? There are a few blogs which mention it and today I tried a couple of pieces of dark chicken meat with ginger and soy sauce and a couple of dried red chilis. Conventional Hainan chicken is steamed and then chilled to gelatinize the liquids so I svied the chicken for two hours at 63C and then gave it a 30 minute ice bath. The results weren't bad but need some help. Brining?

I've done this before - it works great with some modifications.  First, in a pressure cooker, I make an intense chicken stock with ginger, garlic, shallots, etc. added.  For the best results (especially with the skin, I'll take a whole chicken, do the whole salt scrub thing, then plunge into the boiling stock (which then turns into simmer and kept that way) for about 10 minutes, then plunged into ice water.  This chicken is then cut up into parts, and pieces are individually bagged with some of the intense stock, and cooked SV at 140F (for the white meat), or 150F or so for the dark meat.  The dark meat is cooked for a few hours, while the white meat can be done just to pasteurization.  Some of the resulting stock from the bags is used to make the rice, while any extra is recycled.  Over time, your stock becomes more and more chicken-y, although it will need to be topped up with water and more aromatics as time goes by.



#69 EMG

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Posted 01 September 2013 - 08:22 AM

If you do decide to use zip lock bags and don't mind buying a cheap vacuming device, this Kickstarter just ended, but he's going to sell them in his online store around Nov. I'm supposed to get mine by the end of Oct.

https://www.kickstar...1019/thriftyvac

 

What a clever device! thanks for sharing  :smile:



#70 ChrisTaylor

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Posted 01 September 2013 - 03:11 PM

Sous-vide Hainan Chicken?

Does anyone have any experience with this dish? There are a few blogs which mention it and today I tried a couple of pieces of dark chicken meat with ginger and soy sauce and a couple of dried red chilis. Conventional Hainan chicken is steamed and then chilled to gelatinize the liquids so I svied the chicken for two hours at 63C and then gave it a 30 minute ice bath. The results weren't bad but need some help. Brining?

 

Keith_W is the man to speak to about this.


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#71 Robenco15

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Posted 02 September 2013 - 09:41 AM

Sous Vide Lobster

 

I looked through the Sous Vide index and read the posts about cooking lobster Sous Vide. All of those posts are old, and while that isn't an issue because the information is still good, I had a question about any new advances in making sous vide lobster.

 

In the L'astrance cookbook Pascal says he freezes the lobsters first, then when they thaw the meat releases off of their shells, eliminating the need to parboil them. Has anyone tried something like this?

 

Any new/better times and temperatures for sous vide lobster? I assume it is always "poached" in butter in the bag. The temperatures I am finding now is 45C.

 

Thanks!



#72 Robenco15

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Posted 02 September 2013 - 07:11 PM

Thanks for sharing that device greenmonk! I'll look into it when it begins shipping.

 

A question that I can't seem to find the exact answer to.

 

If I sous vide a ribeye (or anything I guess) in a Ziploc bag using the water displacement method then put it in a ice bath (still in the bag) and then refrigerate it until I'm ready to sear it, etc. and serve, is that ok/safe? For how long can I refrigerate it? 24 hours? 3 hours?

 

Could I eliminate all questions of it being unsafe if, after I dunk it in an ice bath, I just put it in a new bag or put it on a plate and refrigerate it in the fridge with it covered?



#73 gfweb

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Posted 02 September 2013 - 07:41 PM

Keeping it in the already pasteurized bag is better. changing bags can introduce bacteria.

#74 Robenco15

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Posted 02 September 2013 - 07:48 PM

Keeping it in the already pasteurized bag is better. changing bags can introduce bacteria.

 

So it won't be a problem. Cool. And pasteurized means that it was cooked at a temperature to eliminate bacteria, right? So much lingo and it all revolves around safety so I'm really trying to get my head around it.

 

By the way, I like to pre-salt my steaks an hour per inch, rinse them, season them and then cook them on the grill or in a pan. Can I/Should I still do this when doing them sous vide? Do I season the steaks and then put them in the bag or do everything afterwards? Can I pre-salt at least, wash it off, dry, put it in the bag, sous vide, and season afterwards? Do you in general season everything after cooking it sous vide?



#75 gfweb

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Posted 02 September 2013 - 08:13 PM

I would SV steaks, then salt and sear on a hot pan then salt again.  If you salt prior to a longish SV (eg >3 to 4 hours) the meat may get a slightly "cured" taste.

 

I recall a pork tenderloin that I salted well then cold smoked and then SVd with rosemary and garlic.  It tasted like a hot dog.

.

You can season with spices or herbed butter etc prior to a long SV, just not salt in my experience.

 

Perhaps someone has studied this...



#76 DiggingDogFarm

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Posted 02 September 2013 - 08:20 PM

And pasteurized means that it was cooked at a temperature to eliminate bacteria, right? So much lingo and it all revolves around safety so I'm really trying to get my head around it.

 

 

I strongly recommend that you read the Douglas Baldwin information that I linked in the other thread.


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#77 gfweb

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Posted 02 September 2013 - 08:21 PM

I second that.



#78 DiggingDogFarm

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Posted 02 September 2013 - 08:27 PM

Dave Arnold's "To Salt or Not To Salt –That’s the Searing Question."


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#79 Robenco15

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Posted 02 September 2013 - 08:32 PM

Yeah I was reading through it. I want to make sure I am understanding it correctly. Pasteurization is obviously a great thing, but it also takes hours and hours to achieve. If I was to sous vide a piece of meat with the idea of chilling it in an ice bath and then refrigerating or freezing it, I have to pasteurize it. But, if I plan on taking it out of the bag, searing it, and eating it, then I don't have to worry about pasteurizing it as I won't be holding it for a long period of time in the fridge, etc. I believe if I was a restaurant I would have 4 hours to serve it? Hence, Dr. Baldwin has two separate tables on his website. Table 2.2 is not pasteurization and table 5.1 is pasteurization.

 

In Modernist Cuisine, they give the temperature and the sous vide time for steaks to be between 45 to 60 minutes. That is not the pasteurization time correct? That is the sear and serve time isn't it?

 

What about eggs? Eggs cooked at 63C for 60 minutes aren't pasteurized are they? But they are safe to eat immediately right?

 

I'm reading and trying to make sense of everything on Baldwin's site but I'm also trying to make sense of all of the new terms in my head and look to you guys for confirmation that I'm understanding it.


Edited by Robenco15, 02 September 2013 - 09:19 PM.


#80 greenmonk

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Posted 02 September 2013 - 08:59 PM

Thanks for sharing that device greenmonk! I'll look into it when it begins shipping.

 

I can ask him when he thinks he can start taking orders from people who didn't back him on Kickstarter.  He actually doesn't live far from me.  We've been emailing back and forth, so I'll ask him when I email him again.  He supposed to start shipping to backers in the middle to end of October, so if you really want one, he may be able to put you on a list for like a "pre-order" or something and ship to you after he ships to all the backers.  I'll ask for you.


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#81 Robenco15

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Posted 02 September 2013 - 09:03 PM

Thanks for sharing that device greenmonk! I'll look into it when it begins shipping.

 

I can ask him when he thinks he can start taking orders from people who didn't back him on Kickstarter.  He actually doesn't live far from me.  We've been emailing back and forth, so I'll ask him when I email him again.  He supposed to start shipping to backers in the middle to end of October, so if you really want one, he may be able to put you on a list for like a "pre-order" or something and ship to you after he ships to all the backers.  I'll ask for you.

 

 

Thank you! I'm not set on it yet, but definitely ask about it. That would be awesome!



#82 KennethT

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 07:16 AM

Yeah I was reading through it. I want to make sure I am understanding it correctly. Pasteurization is obviously a great thing, but it also takes hours and hours to achieve. If I was to sous vide a piece of meat with the idea of chilling it in an ice bath and then refrigerating or freezing it, I have to pasteurize it. But, if I plan on taking it out of the bag, searing it, and eating it, then I don't have to worry about pasteurizing it as I won't be holding it for a long period of time in the fridge, etc. I believe if I was a restaurant I would have 4 hours to serve it? Hence, Dr. Baldwin has two separate tables on his website. Table 2.2 is not pasteurization and table 5.1 is pasteurization.
 
In Modernist Cuisine, they give the temperature and the sous vide time for steaks to be between 45 to 60 minutes. That is not the pasteurization time correct? That is the sear and serve time isn't it?
 
What about eggs? Eggs cooked at 63C for 60 minutes aren't pasteurized are they? But they are safe to eat immediately right?
 
I'm reading and trying to make sense of everything on Baldwin's site but I'm also trying to make sense of all of the new terms in my head and look to you guys for confirmation that I'm understanding it.

Not everything needs to be pasteurized if you are to consume immediately (or within 4 hours). Whole muscle cuts of beef, like steak are fine - as long as you give it a surface sear which will kill all surface bacteria. The theory is that the interior of whole muscle cuts (meat that hasn't been punctured) are considered sterile, but the surface may be contaminated. BTW - while doing this, I would recommend searing before SV - as many times, low temperature baths for rare steak are like incubators for bacteria - so you'd want to kill any surface bacteria before hitting the bath. Some people drop the bagged steak in boiling water for a short time... but personally, I'm a fan of the pre and post sear. Pre for bacteria, post for flavor/color.

Other foods, like poultry, should be pasteurized regardless of when you plan on consuming it.

I think the rule of thumb with pasteurization would go along with whether you would consider eating the same item raw. So steak, for instance, can be eaten as tartare, so you wouldn't need to pasteurize other than the surface. I don't know anyone who would ever consider eating raw chicken.

#83 Anna N

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 10:44 AM

Yeah I was reading through it. I want to make sure I am understanding it correctly. Pasteurization is obviously a great thing, but it also takes hours and hours to achieve. If I was to sous vide a piece of meat with the idea of chilling it in an ice bath and then refrigerating or freezing it, I have to pasteurize it. But, if I plan on taking it out of the bag, searing it, and eating it, then I don't have to worry about pasteurizing it as I won't be holding it for a long period of time in the fridge, etc. I believe if I was a restaurant I would have 4 hours to serve it? Hence, Dr. Baldwin has two separate tables on his website. Table 2.2 is not pasteurization and table 5.1 is pasteurization. In Modernist Cuisine, they give the temperature and the sous vide time for steaks to be between 45 to 60 minutes. That is not the pasteurization time correct? That is the sear and serve time isn't it? What about eggs? Eggs cooked at 63C for 60 minutes aren't pasteurized are they? But they are safe to eat immediately right? I'm reading and trying to make sense of everything on Baldwin's site but I'm also trying to make sense of all of the new terms in my head and look to you guys for confirmation that I'm understanding it.

Not everything needs to be pasteurized if you are to consume immediately (or within 4 hours). Whole muscle cuts of beef, like steak are fine - as long as you give it a surface sear which will kill all surface bacteria. The theory is that the interior of whole muscle cuts (meat that hasn't been punctured) are considered sterile, but the surface may be contaminated. BTW - while doing this, I would recommend searing before SV - as many times, low temperature baths for rare steak are like incubators for bacteria - so you'd want to kill any surface bacteria before hitting the bath. Some people drop the bagged steak in boiling water for a short time... but personally, I'm a fan of the pre and post sear. Pre for bacteria, post for flavor/color.Other foods, like poultry, should be pasteurized regardless of when you plan on consuming it.I think the rule of thumb with pasteurization would go along with whether you would consider eating the same item raw. So steak, for instance, can be eaten as tartare, so you wouldn't need to pasteurize other than the surface. I don't know anyone who would ever consider eating raw chicken.

Just a couple of comments. The Japanese have a number of raw chicken dishes. And more importantly one needs to be aware that steaks are now frequently jaccarded (pierced all over with very fine blades to cut the muscle fibres) prior to sale to tenderise them. This is not always obvious but it suggests that one needs to know the provenance of one's steaks before assuming that they don't require pasteurization.
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#84 Robenco15

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 12:38 PM

Thank you for all of the help!

 

I have a question about the Nathanm beef and poultry/pork charts I've been looking at. Are they pasteurization charts or just sear and serve charts? They seem to me to be sear and serve charts. Does Nathanm have pasteurization charts somewhere?

 

Thickness is taken into account, but what about if it is a pork tenderloin that may be 3 inches thick but 12 inches long. I know Baldwin has charts for sperical, cylindrical, and slab meat, but does Nathanm have them somewhere?

 

Does cooking multiple bags of the same protein in one waterbath affect cooking time at all? Obviously the temperature may drop more but in terms of cooking time, does it matter?

 

Thank you! So glad to be feeling more comfortable about the safety involved with it.



#85 KennethT

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 04:13 PM





Yeah I was reading through it. I want to make sure I am understanding it correctly. Pasteurization is obviously a great thing, but it also takes hours and hours to achieve. If I was to sous vide a piece of meat with the idea of chilling it in an ice bath and then refrigerating or freezing it, I have to pasteurize it. But, if I plan on taking it out of the bag, searing it, and eating it, then I don't have to worry about pasteurizing it as I won't be holding it for a long period of time in the fridge, etc. I believe if I was a restaurant I would have 4 hours to serve it? Hence, Dr. Baldwin has two separate tables on his website. Table 2.2 is not pasteurization and table 5.1 is pasteurization. In Modernist Cuisine, they give the temperature and the sous vide time for steaks to be between 45 to 60 minutes. That is not the pasteurization time correct? That is the sear and serve time isn't it? What about eggs? Eggs cooked at 63C for 60 minutes aren't pasteurized are they? But they are safe to eat immediately right? I'm reading and trying to make sense of everything on Baldwin's site but I'm also trying to make sense of all of the new terms in my head and look to you guys for confirmation that I'm understanding it.

Not everything needs to be pasteurized if you are to consume immediately (or within 4 hours). Whole muscle cuts of beef, like steak are fine - as long as you give it a surface sear which will kill all surface bacteria. The theory is that the interior of whole muscle cuts (meat that hasn't been punctured) are considered sterile, but the surface may be contaminated. BTW - while doing this, I would recommend searing before SV - as many times, low temperature baths for rare steak are like incubators for bacteria - so you'd want to kill any surface bacteria before hitting the bath. Some people drop the bagged steak in boiling water for a short time... but personally, I'm a fan of the pre and post sear. Pre for bacteria, post for flavor/color.Other foods, like poultry, should be pasteurized regardless of when you plan on consuming it.I think the rule of thumb with pasteurization would go along with whether you would consider eating the same item raw. So steak, for instance, can be eaten as tartare, so you wouldn't need to pasteurize other than the surface. I don't know anyone who would ever consider eating raw chicken.

Just a couple of comments. The Japanese have a number of raw chicken dishes. And more importantly one needs to be aware that steaks are now frequently jaccarded (pierced all over with very fine blades to cut the muscle fibres) prior to sale to tenderise them. This is not always obvious but it suggests that one needs to know the provenance of one's steaks before assuming that they don't require pasteurization.

Right - I thought about explicitly mentioning the industrial jaccarding, but didn't - I alluded to it when I mentioned "meat that hasn't been punctured" but I should have been more explicit, so thanks for pointing that out. With regards to the chicken, while I know there are a few cultures that eat raw poultry, I'm not sure if they're doing that at home, or only in restaurants that know exactly when and how the chicken was slaughtered, gutted, etc to minimize the chances of bacterial problems. And I have no idea how popular those dishes are - do people eat them all the time or is it only once in a long while? Just like with sushi - you can't just go to your local market, pick up a piece of salmon fillet or something and assume it is sushi grade and safe for raw consumption. Nothing is impossible, but I have a hard time believing that people are going to their local market, picking up some chicken that may have been sitting there for a few days, and consuming it raw.

Regarding the question about pasteurization time - the pasteurization time is a constant for a given core temperature and bacteria type. What varies is the amount of time it takes the core to get to that temperature - which varies primarily by thickness/shape. Douglas Baldwin makes it easy by incorporating pasteurization time into some of the tables - but I think early-on NathanM posted a table of pasteurization times by temperature that you could add to the time it takes to reach core temperature.

If you have an iOS device, I would highly recommend downloading the SousVideDash app - designed by an EGullet member and fellow sous vide enthusiast Vengroff. It is not expensive, and it makes the problem of cooking times, pasteurization, etc. a non-issue as the app calculates everything for you. All you need to do is enter in the type of protein, desired core temp, bath temp, food shape and thickness, and you're ready to go.

ETA: Yes, shape matters. I don't believe NathanM went into detail about it in the early tables, but if memory serves, it was address in Modernist Cuisine. It is also addressed in the Sous Vide Dash app. The early nathanm tables assumed an infinite plane of a certain thickness (like a slab) - which is the worst case scenario. If you are using the same bath temp as core temp, then this is a good figure to use at will ensure that the core is what you think it is. Other shapes will reduce the need for as long of a cooking time to come to temp. Shape becomes much more critical if you're doing gradient cooking - your core temp is lower than your bath temp. Some people prefer this method for certain foods that they don't want to be 100% even... personally, I do that when I cook fatty fish - like salmon. I use a bath temp of 115F, but shoot for a core temp of 102F - it comes out just how I like it every time, plus it makes the cooking time quite a bit shorter. But that is much trickier to figure without the app.

Cooking multiple bags does not affect anything so long as you have decent water flow around each of the bags - they shouldn't be stacked up touching each other. As long as your water can flow around each bag, and your heater can remedy the initial temp drop in a short amount of time it's fine.

Edited by KennethT, 03 September 2013 - 04:23 PM.

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#86 gfweb

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 04:26 PM

Over longer cooking times the temp drop from a big load of food is negligible assuming your heater is adequately powered. You can minimize the effect by using a large volume of water to cook in and insulating your vessel.

#87 OliverB

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 04:39 PM

don't forget that you're not creating a real vacuum, you're pulling air out so that the water can have contact with as much of the food as possible. It's not a vacuum and there's still air/oxygen in there and that's totally fine. which is why the water displacement method is just fine.

Personally I'd still get a food saver or similar, since it's so useful for other things (freezer storage, buying cold cuts in bulk and splitting them, freezing parts, etc) but if you really don't have the room for one you'll be totally find with the dunk in water method.

I'm not sure I'd trust the ziplock bags to hold a "vacuum" for extended times anyway, but for SV you'll be plenty fine. Actually, a sandwich bag dunked and then twisted, folded over and tied shut with a rubber band or similar does work as well if in a bind. You just want to be sure your meat etc has full (or as full as possible) contact with the water at all times.


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#88 EMG

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 04:47 PM

Regarding pasteurization, I found this video from ChefSteps explaining sous-vide pre-treatment.  Nothing in depth, but shows the many ways to safely prepare your food:

 

 



#89 Robenco15

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 08:45 PM

 


 


Yeah I was reading through it. I want to make sure I am understanding it correctly. Pasteurization is obviously a great thing, but it also takes hours and hours to achieve. If I was to sous vide a piece of meat with the idea of chilling it in an ice bath and then refrigerating or freezing it, I have to pasteurize it. But, if I plan on taking it out of the bag, searing it, and eating it, then I don't have to worry about pasteurizing it as I won't be holding it for a long period of time in the fridge, etc. I believe if I was a restaurant I would have 4 hours to serve it? Hence, Dr. Baldwin has two separate tables on his website. Table 2.2 is not pasteurization and table 5.1 is pasteurization. In Modernist Cuisine, they give the temperature and the sous vide time for steaks to be between 45 to 60 minutes. That is not the pasteurization time correct? That is the sear and serve time isn't it? What about eggs? Eggs cooked at 63C for 60 minutes aren't pasteurized are they? But they are safe to eat immediately right? I'm reading and trying to make sense of everything on Baldwin's site but I'm also trying to make sense of all of the new terms in my head and look to you guys for confirmation that I'm understanding it.

Not everything needs to be pasteurized if you are to consume immediately (or within 4 hours). Whole muscle cuts of beef, like steak are fine - as long as you give it a surface sear which will kill all surface bacteria. The theory is that the interior of whole muscle cuts (meat that hasn't been punctured) are considered sterile, but the surface may be contaminated. BTW - while doing this, I would recommend searing before SV - as many times, low temperature baths for rare steak are like incubators for bacteria - so you'd want to kill any surface bacteria before hitting the bath. Some people drop the bagged steak in boiling water for a short time... but personally, I'm a fan of the pre and post sear. Pre for bacteria, post for flavor/color.Other foods, like poultry, should be pasteurized regardless of when you plan on consuming it.I think the rule of thumb with pasteurization would go along with whether you would consider eating the same item raw. So steak, for instance, can be eaten as tartare, so you wouldn't need to pasteurize other than the surface. I don't know anyone who would ever consider eating raw chicken.
 
Just a couple of comments. The Japanese have a number of raw chicken dishes. And more importantly one needs to be aware that steaks are now frequently jaccarded (pierced all over with very fine blades to cut the muscle fibres) prior to sale to tenderise them. This is not always obvious but it suggests that one needs to know the provenance of one's steaks before assuming that they don't require pasteurization.
 
Right - I thought about explicitly mentioning the industrial jaccarding, but didn't - I alluded to it when I mentioned "meat that hasn't been punctured" but I should have been more explicit, so thanks for pointing that out. With regards to the chicken, while I know there are a few cultures that eat raw poultry, I'm not sure if they're doing that at home, or only in restaurants that know exactly when and how the chicken was slaughtered, gutted, etc to minimize the chances of bacterial problems. And I have no idea how popular those dishes are - do people eat them all the time or is it only once in a long while? Just like with sushi - you can't just go to your local market, pick up a piece of salmon fillet or something and assume it is sushi grade and safe for raw consumption. Nothing is impossible, but I have a hard time believing that people are going to their local market, picking up some chicken that may have been sitting there for a few days, and consuming it raw.

Regarding the question about pasteurization time - the pasteurization time is a constant for a given core temperature and bacteria type. What varies is the amount of time it takes the core to get to that temperature - which varies primarily by thickness/shape. Douglas Baldwin makes it easy by incorporating pasteurization time into some of the tables - but I think early-on NathanM posted a table of pasteurization times by temperature that you could add to the time it takes to reach core temperature.

If you have an iOS device, I would highly recommend downloading the SousVideDash app - designed by an EGullet member and fellow sous vide enthusiast Vengroff. It is not expensive, and it makes the problem of cooking times, pasteurization, etc. a non-issue as the app calculates everything for you. All you need to do is enter in the type of protein, desired core temp, bath temp, food shape and thickness, and you're ready to go.

ETA: Yes, shape matters. I don't believe NathanM went into detail about it in the early tables, but if memory serves, it was address in Modernist Cuisine. It is also addressed in the Sous Vide Dash app. The early nathanm tables assumed an infinite plane of a certain thickness (like a slab) - which is the worst case scenario. If you are using the same bath temp as core temp, then this is a good figure to use at will ensure that the core is what you think it is. Other shapes will reduce the need for as long of a cooking time to come to temp. Shape becomes much more critical if you're doing gradient cooking - your core temp is lower than your bath temp. Some people prefer this method for certain foods that they don't want to be 100% even... personally, I do that when I cook fatty fish - like salmon. I use a bath temp of 115F, but shoot for a core temp of 102F - it comes out just how I like it every time, plus it makes the cooking time quite a bit shorter. But that is much trickier to figure without the app.

Cooking multiple bags does not affect anything so long as you have decent water flow around each of the bags - they shouldn't be stacked up touching each other. As long as your water can flow around each bag, and your heater can remedy the initial temp drop in a short amount of time it's fine.

 

Thank you so much for all of that info!

 

I will look into the app, but I heard the cooking times tend to be longer than they need to be compared to the various charts on this site.

 

I have one more question about thost NathanM charts. I see it starts with a steak at 41F and then gives bath temperature and time needed to cook to reach approx. 130F.

 

For one, how do I check that the steak is at 41F. I use a thermometer like the thermapen and check the raw steak's core temperature by putting it in it right? Or can I/am I supposed to use an infared surface thermometer?

 

I also understand that if I start with a steak that is 51F and I want it to be at a core temperature of 140F then I still use the same exact cook times and obviously adjust the waterbath temperature. Now, what if I start with a steak that is 51F or higher (room temperature) and still want it to be at a core temperature of 130F. The cook time is decreased, correct? But, how do I figure out the perfect cook time? A math equation?

 

I hate math. Instead of that, can I just let it cook for the same length of time as if it started at 41F? It can't overcook right? The only problem with letting it sit at that temperature longer would be that it "dries out" a little or somehow negatively affects the meat? In sous vide you want to cook something in the waterbath for as short as you need to to achieve the desired core temperature and safety precautions right? Letting the meat sit at core temperature of 130F for longer because it started higher than 41F just means it is slightly pasteurizing?

 

NathanM's cooking time on his charts seem to differ significantly from Dr. Baldwin's cooking times on his charts (his non-pasteurization chart, table 2.2). Dr. Baldwin's "from frozen" charts look incredibly helpful.

 

Do I seem to be grasping more of this?



#90 Baselerd

Baselerd
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Posted 04 September 2013 - 07:33 AM

A very cheap and small "vacuum" pump I would reccomend is the ziploc hand pump. You won't be able to do any fancy compression or anything, but it will be enough to get most of the air out of the bag with liquid or solid foods. 







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