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Sous Vide: Recipes, Techniques & Equipment (Part 8)

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So I'm going to be making a couple sous vide ny strip steaks tonight and I want to put a black bean sauce on them (it's from a jar, bought from the asian market by my place), either to marinate, sous vide in, or just sear in at the end. For either of the first two options, I am unsure how this sauce will react in the sous vide cooker, and if I just sear it at the end, I wonder how good a sear I can get, given that the black bean sauce will probably burn fairly easily. Any ideas?

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It has been my understanding that the meat surface should be dry to achieve the best sear. Certainly putting the black bean sauce in your bag and then vacuuming will give flavor as you sous vide, but perhaps reserving some of the black bean sauce for plating would be optimum. As for the sauce itself, I also understand vegetables need to be at about 185 F for best sous vide results.

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OK, new question. Have been cooking a chuck roast (in a Thai aromatic marinade) and short ribs (vadouvan, from 4505's website) for 2 days (tomorrow is #3) and will be serving them at my MIL's tomorrow evening along with a batch of retrograde mashed potatoes. The question is transport.....

I plan to sear the meat right before serving, but I'm torn between taking the meat out and chilling it for transport, or leaving it to stay in the vacuum bags for 2-4 hours and then opening. Either way, if chilled or at room temperature I'd warm a bit before searing.

Also I am planning on doing the first step with the retrograde potatoes and then chilling them -- will do the second step and finish the potatoes right before serving, as the water bath is full of beef at the moment. Better planning would have been to do the potatoes first as retrograde potatoes are great reheated, but that's hindsight for you.

So any suggestions on the meat? Chill or leave warm?

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OK, new question. Have been cooking a chuck roast (in a Thai aromatic marinade) and short ribs (vadouvan, from 4505's website) for 2 days (tomorrow is #3) and will be serving them at my MIL's tomorrow evening along with a batch of retrograde mashed potatoes. The question is transport.....

I plan to sear the meat right before serving, but I'm torn between taking the meat out and chilling it for transport, or leaving it to stay in the vacuum bags for 2-4 hours and then opening. Either way, if chilled or at room temperature I'd warm a bit before searing.

Also I am planning on doing the first step with the retrograde potatoes and then chilling them -- will do the second step and finish the potatoes right before serving, as the water bath is full of beef at the moment. Better planning would have been to do the potatoes first as retrograde potatoes are great reheated, but that's hindsight for you.

So any suggestions on the meat? Chill or leave warm?

Definitely chill it.

If you leave it warm, it will linger in the danger zone for far too long.

Pop it into an ice bath. Then refrigerate. Transport to your MIL's in a chiller.

You can reheat in warm water at the other end before searing. Just add hot water every so often to keep it above 55C.

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OK, new question. Have been cooking a chuck roast (in a Thai aromatic marinade) and short ribs (vadouvan, from 4505's website) for 2 days (tomorrow is #3) and will be serving them at my MIL's tomorrow evening along with a batch of retrograde mashed potatoes. The question is transport.....

I plan to sear the meat right before serving, but I'm torn between taking the meat out and chilling it for transport, or leaving it to stay in the vacuum bags for 2-4 hours and then opening. Either way, if chilled or at room temperature I'd warm a bit before searing.

Also I am planning on doing the first step with the retrograde potatoes and then chilling them -- will do the second step and finish the potatoes right before serving, as the water bath is full of beef at the moment. Better planning would have been to do the potatoes first as retrograde potatoes are great reheated, but that's hindsight for you.

So any suggestions on the meat? Chill or leave warm?

Definitely chill it.

If you leave it warm, it will linger in the danger zone for far too long.

Pop it into an ice bath. Then refrigerate. Transport to your MIL's in a chiller.

You can reheat in warm water at the other end before searing. Just add hot water every so often to keep it above 55C.

Thanks Nick! Just the thing I was worried about. Will let you know how it all turned out!

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There are posts further up the list that talk about a 30 second dunk in 180F to kill any pathogens before a long cook. I found it when I recently had some short ribs that smelled a bit off. Essentially, there can be pathogens that while they are eventually handled by the long cook, can create lactic acid in the initial couple of hours that will cause the odor. The dunk takes care of them.

I'm trying short ribs for the first time this week and am thinking about the anti-pathogen dunk -- but would it also work to give the short ribs a quick sear with a blowtorch prior to bagging?

...might want to do both unless you are incredibly thorough blowtorching the surface. Cooking Issues recommends searing meat before and after sv'ing, and I can certainly taste the difference.

Below is a quote from an email I recently sent to one of my readers about this:

So, there are three types of microorganisms in food: beneficial, spoilage, and pathogenic. Some microorganisms are both beneficial and spoilage, but pathogenic microorganisms are neither beneficial nor spoilage --- which is why you can't taste or smell pathogenic microorganisms. The most heat resistant pathogenic microorganism (C. perfringens) can grow at temperatures up to 126.1°F (52.3°C). A few beneficial and spoilage microorganisms, however, are thermophiles that thrive between about 110°F and 175°F; so the theory behind dunking the raw meet in boiling water before cooking it sous vide is that it'll kill any of the thermophilic microorganisms on the surface of the meat.

That said, so long as your meat doesn't smell going into the bag, it's very unlikely that it'll develop a funk while cooking sous vide --- even when cooking at 130°F for 1--3 days. I've never had a problem with any of my meat smelling off when I've removed it from its pouch. (This may be because I have a very sensitive nose and I always smell my food before I vacuum seal it.)

I smelled the meat before I cooked it and it seemed ok. But maybe my nose is not working as well as it should. I will try the dunk approach on the pounded meat before I roll it up. Thanks to everyone for the help. I will try it and let you know; I have an identical piece of meat bought at the same time from the same place (it was sealed and frozen).

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Thanks all! So I did a sniff test and was so excited to start the cooking that I totally forgot to do the pre-sear. :blink::unsure: But the short ribs came out beautifully. I chilled them in the afternoon and served them about 4 hours later after doing a quick warming in a warm water bath.

So good that my Mother-in-Law demanded a sous vide machine for her Christmas present! :raz:

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Thanks all! So I did a sniff test and was so excited to start the cooking that I totally forgot to do the pre-sear. :blink::unsure: But the short ribs came out beautifully. I chilled them in the afternoon and served them about 4 hours later after doing a quick warming in a warm water bath.

So good that my Mother-in-Law demanded a sous vide machine for her Christmas present! :raz:

If you are cooking to pasteurization, the pre-sear isn't important for short ribs. I have done quite a few blind tastings and pre-searing does not seem to impact flavor. Others have reported the same results. The only people that I know of that prefer pre-searing have done non-blind tastings.

Best,

Edward

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I would think all a pre-sear would do is contribute to the bag juice. So if you planned on reducing and browning the bag juice for a sauce it might contribute, though all applications have called for actually reducing and caramelizing the juice anyway. A pre-sear is something I have never done with SV.

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I would think all a pre-sear would do is contribute to the bag juice. So if you planned on reducing and browning the bag juice for a sauce it might contribute, though all applications have called for actually reducing and caramelizing the juice anyway. A pre-sear is something I have never done with SV.

A pre-sear would definitely result in a decrease of surface bacteria on the meat. If you were going to jaccard it, this may then be beneficial; otherwise I agree with you. Save the sear for the meat afterwards and create a maillard effect for the sauce by separating the osmazome from the solids by heating in a pan. Then pour off the osmazome and subject those solids to some significant heat to create the maillard effect before continuing the sauce making in a conventional way.

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I'm wondering: is it worth distinguishing between briefly cooked meats and LTLT meats? It's pretty hard to sear something that's as fall-apart tender as some of these 48-72h proteins.

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In pretty much all my applications I am shocking the LTLT proteins for transport to an event. The fact that they are cold and firm gives me a chance to trim them nicely, get a good sear and then warm back up in the oven at the lowest possible temp. I could imagine dealing with a 72 hour straight out of the bath would be a handfull.

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I'm planning to do turkey leg confit in the sous vide (3 turkey legs) which I'll chill and store in the fridge for service the next day. Planning to reheat them in the sous vide and was wondering if I can take the legs out of the bags, de-bone and slice up and then rebag the meat into one bag for reheating or if I should leave them as is and de-bone etc after reheating right before serving?

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I would take out, bone and re-bag. Then slice after heating/searing/resting.

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I'm wondering: is it worth distinguishing between briefly cooked meats and LTLT meats? It's pretty hard to sear something that's as fall-apart tender as some of these 48-72h proteins.

In my opinion, if you cook beef until it is falling apart, it has been in the bath too long -- brisket and short ribs after 48 hours -- for example -- will be fork tender but not falling apart and hold up to a nice sear. For me, if the brisket gets to the point of falling apart, the texture is less than optimal.

Pork belly is a bit different and seems to require chilling before cutting into the pieces that go into the frying pan for searing.

That's my preference anyway.

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That's a good point for sure. Belly is something I always chill and press before trimming and frying (Actually have some in with 5 hours left right now). 48 or even 72 hour short ribs at 130 should still be easy to work with considering they are medium rare but tender.

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I would take out, bone and re-bag. Then slice after heating/searing/resting.

That's what I did for Thanksgiving and it worked out great.

Thanks, that's great. The more I can do ahead of time the better.

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On 1271073578' post='1738712, nickrey said:


I put this post on the dinner thread. Click on the link to see the picture.

Finished sous vide cooked pork fillet by putting sliced fig on it, wrapping it in pancetta and searing in a very hot frypan so the pancetta cooked. Worked like a dream.



Nick, what were the temps & times for this pork?

ETA: Ignore that. Here's the recipe a bit down the topic.


Edited by Chris Amirault (log)

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On 1292957939' post='1776072, Chris Amirault said:


On 1271073578' post='1738712, nickrey said:


I put this post on the dinner thread. Click on the link to see the picture.

Finished sous vide cooked pork fillet by putting sliced fig on it, wrapping it in pancetta and searing in a very hot frypan so the pancetta cooked. Worked like a dream.



Nick, what were the temps & times for this pork?

ETA: Ignore that. Here's the recipe a bit down the topic.


As usual there are many variants depending on the cut used. For a quick meal in the evening I cook a pork fillet for at least an hour at 60C. This is then taken out of the bag, dried and wrapped in prosciutto/pancetta and then seared. I now tend to slice and serve on the cauliflower puree.It's a family favorite.

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This one may make an appearance at Casa Amirault in the coming days. Assuming you don't need to rest pre-slicing?

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I just found out that my husband, who is not only willing to put up with me but actually seems to like me a little bit, has gotten an immersion circulator for my Christmas present. Of course I'm going to cook a sous vide egg for him first, but what should I do next?

I have lots of fun things in my meat freezer that might be good - pig snouts and trotters, pork osso bucco cuts, lots of venison and rabbit, beef and pork liver, whole jowls, pork belly, and there are probably a few hearts and kidneys floating around in there. And yes, there's probably any normal cut you can think of in there too. There are worse things to hoard than good meat.

So, any suggestions? Any opinions on what to put in the bag with the meat?

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Well, if you're like me, you'll want to try a few different things in short. So beef filets or pork chops would be good starts. Anything tender that benefits by being cooked precisely. I would hold off on the tougher cuts until the novelty has worn off a little, so the longer cook times aren't tying up the machine for long periods.

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While IndyRob makes some good points, the blow-me-away preparations involved low-and-slow stuff like short ribs and carnitas. I'd give them a whirl early.

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