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Fay Jai

Sous Vide: Recipes, Techniques & Equipment (Part 1)

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The long cooking time at or near the final temperature allows the collagen to dissolve, resulting in much more tender meat, without fear of overcooking or dryness. Some people cook for days, but I find that makes the meat too mushy. About 7 hours at 135F works fine for me.

For a brisket or something emulates BBQ style, then you need a higher temperature, more like 170F.

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I would imagine a slightly less labour intensive way to do it would be to first heat up the water to 2 or 3 degrees above the desired temperature on the stovetop and then place it in an oven that is set 5 degrees less than the desired temperature. The heat from the oven should slow down temperature loss of the water but will not increase the temperature. Unless your cooking for more than an hour or so, the temp should remain acceptably in range.

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I worked with Doug at TFL... My title there was "Sous Vide" please contact me with any questions Coldestsnow@aol.com

-J

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Fat in the bag actually works very well and is a huge $ saver, as duck fat can cost 15$/# 4-5oz is sufficent for a whole pork belly where as you would need a roasting pan and 4-5 gallons of fat otherwise....

The trick is not getting any fat on the bag's sides where the seal is to be formed....

This is accomplished by a bucket of correct size being placed inside the opening of the bag....

-or-

2 people holding the bag that is folded over, with the crease below where the seal is to be made. (Doug would not approve of this method, but it works if you are carefull)

-J

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Just bought a home sous vide (vaccume machine) was wondering why the "cooking" bags inflate when submerged in water.

Is the vaccum not strong enough...

What are some home models (cheep) that do work for actual cooking and not just storage?.....

-J

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Is the vaccum not strong enough...

I use a Tilia food saver. You are right, it is not as strong as the professional one.

The packet will shrink back when you ice it down.

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The trick is not getting any fat on the bag's sides where the seal is to be formed....

I do some "sous-vide" and I'm applying fatty and spicy reductions (of garlic, rosemary, wine, etc). I 'm freezing the liquid stuff before putting it in the bag together with the meat.

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I do almost all my fish cooking sous vide now. It is just amazing the taste and texture. I typically do not like Salmon (my wife does) but cooked sous vide its moist and tastes fantastic.

I did a brisket once also, though it was good, I need to refine that technique. I placed it in a 200 F oven in a foodsaver bag. I filled a roasiting pan with water and I think it was like 10 hrs or so. It needed more time though the concentrated beef taste was there.

I braised it some more in a homemade BBQ sauce the next day and it was great.

Msk

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I have a question. Since it seems I own every machine known to mankind except a microwave and food saver, and don't really have the room to store another one, (and my wife would divorce me if I purchased another) is plastic wrap safe for sous vide?

I had this idea. If I wrapped a piece of food (fish, meat etc) tightly in good quality plastic wrap, placed it in a crockpot water bath, where the temperature is more constant, how would this work?

I found two great recipes for salmon and chicken breast that I would enjoy trying with this method. Any thoughts?

I know some people recommend sealer bags, but you can never remove all of the air from them.


Edited by rich (log)

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You could try a ziploc bag, and submerging it in water with the seal open a bit in order to get rid of most of the air, then seal it.

Msk

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Nonetheless I don't think there is anything better than the Tilia for home use. If you have the Professional II or the new Professional III you can use the vacuum override to be sure that all the air is pulled out of the bag. (Some other models may also have this feature). If the bag does float one can always keep it down with a heavy lid, but I have rarely had that problem.

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I have a question. Since it seems I own every machine known to mankind except a microwave and food saver, and don't really have the room to store another one, (and my wife would divorce me if I purchased another) is plastic wrap safe for sous vide?

I had this idea. If I wrapped a piece of food (fish, meat etc) tightly in good quality plastic wrap, placed it in a crockpot water bath, where the temperature is more constant, how would this work?

I found two great recipes for salmon and chicken breast that I would enjoy trying with this method. Any thoughts? 

I know some people recommend sealer bags, but you can never remove all of the air from them.

I have seen chefs do exactly what you suggest. A piece of fish is seasoned and then wrapped very tightly in plastic wrap and dropped into a water bath. I have tasted striped bass and halibut cooked that way and both were excellent

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Thanks. I'm going to try both the salmon and chicken this weekend and report back Monday.

I think this should solve the puffing and floating problems that occur with ziplocs et al.

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I have wrapped in plastic to sousvide. It works just as well as the vaccum sealed bags. The only problem is that you run a high risk of H20 penetration. Especially if mis handled. This could be disasterous and quite costly.

I have never found the plastic wrap to impart any flavour.

Does any one know if the home vaccum sealer will work with comercial bags.

I have much expierience with the commercial machine and the home sealer I have (rival) Appears to work just as well untill the bag hits hot water. Then the bags inflate.... This is a big problem if cooking green vegetables.

I'm going to get some of the commercial bags unless someone has allready tried and they do not work...

I bought the home sealer to do baby food for my unborn daughter. I have 4 months left to perfect some good sousvide purees. "Sorry Gerber"

Has anyone done babyfood before? Ideas for good food for babies? Balenced diet? Phytonutrents? Ect...

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Boris_A --freezing the liquid stuff before putting it in the bag --

Boris, does this effect the vaccum seal? does the liquid surround the protien during cooking?

Do you use an Ice Cube Tray? Your machine is Commercial or Home?

Intresting and innovative solution to this seal problem...

I find that a squeeze bottle or ladel works well too but if you have the time to freeze and it doesent introduce an air pocket then hey why not....

-J

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Boris, does this effect the vaccum seal?  does the liquid surround the protien during cooking?

Well, I tried to make veal breasts (20 hours of simmering at 62 C in a laboratory water bath). The first time, when I added the garlic and the rosemary (with EVOO) as raw as it was, I got strange tastes (62 C might be fine for veal, but not for these spices, for ma taste) and the liquid EVOO was sucked out (when trying to get a sufficient vacuum) and sealing became a PITA.

So I started to cut away of some veal (tiny pieces), searing it and to preparing a classic reduction of seared veal, garlic, rosemary, white wine, salt, pepper and EVOO. I put this in very small containers, froze it for an hour or two and added the well frozen, hard pieces of "jus" (cracked up with a fork, if necessary) to the meat in the bag. Then vaccumize and seal quickly.

After letting it rest for some minutes at room temperature, it gets liquid again and you can "massage" the liquidity a bit around your meat.

In order to resolve the sealing problem, I do this with EVOO/pepper mixes for salmon (or EVOO/pepper/ seared garlic for tuna) "en sous-vide" as well. Usually, as soon as the oil melts, it starts to spread around the fish automatically or with very soft manipulating.

It's a workaround for the recipes from the pros (like Roca) who can afford a $2000 vaccum chamber machine where you don't have this problems with liquid stuff.


Edited by Boris_A (log)

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I have some restaurant friends who are doing rack of lambs at 120F for 3-4 hours and that is asking for trouble if some sort of sanitation and draconian  cooling methods are not employed.

So I've been observing this conversation a bit and had a few of my own thoughts. I wanted to do a sous vide rack of lamb but nothing on the Internet tells me how to do a rack a lamb with the exception of the comment quoted above, so I decided to conduct my own experiment.

To make it a sous vide I used the Tilia FoodSaver® system to bag the lamb. Before proceeding with actually bagging the lamb, make a compound butter using herbs and seasonings of your choice. In this first experiment I softened 8 ounces of butter and mixed it with salt, pepper, and herbs de provence, toasted mustard seed ground in a pestle/mortar and smoked Spanish sea salt.

Place the butter in the bag and apply pressure to distribute it evenly. You can’t rub the butter into the lamb because it won’t stick. After rubbing the butter into the bag, slide the rack of lamb into the bag. There should be an even distribution of butter on both sides. Seal the bag as you normally do.

gallery_6987_347_21745.jpg

To cook the lamb I used as my basin a 1/3rd 4-inch hotel pan. Insert the lamb and fill it wil water to identify how much you need, then remove the lamb. I have an electric stove and this is one of those rare occasions where electric will be better than gas because electric maintains a constant temperature better. I inserted a thermometer into the water, the kind that has a 3-food chord attached between the probe and the display panel, turned on the stove one notch above low and waited about 25 minutes for the water to get to 125°F.

gallery_6987_347_22101.jpg

Just as a grill, oven, or skillet has hot spots, so does a container of hot water on a stove. You'll want to swirl the water every now and again to get an accurate temperature reading. It will vary three or four degrees in either direction after a swirl.

My goal was to cook it between 125°F and 130°F and took a guess at cooking it for four hours, thinking that that should be enough time to cook it. And it's not going to go over the temperature for medium rare in the water anyway so it could sit at that temperature for a day.

Here’s what it looks like in the water after about 1 minute. Notice that the butter is just beginning to melt

gallery_6987_347_22713.jpg

This is what it looks like after 10 minutes and through to 4 hours. This picture was taken just before taking it out of the water. Notice that the butter melts but there's no red juice from the meat. Through osmosis, the butter is being absorbed by the meat to naturally achieve an equalibrium between the densities. Also notice that there's no 'ballooning' of the FoodSaver wrapping due to the low temperature of the water.

gallery_6987_347_16561.jpg

When I took the bag out of the water I wasn’t sure if resting was required. But I let it sit about 5 minutes anyway. There’s no carry over cooking when cooking at this low of a temperature for that long. Notice that in the cut meat, there's no juice on the cutting board. This picture was taken about 10 seconds after slicing.

gallery_6987_347_15846.jpg

To make it look a little more pallatable, I sprinkled the fat side with a bread crumb mixture. Run some stale French bread through a food processor and pass it through a tamis. Toast it in a skillet with some EVO, Iraqi sea salt from a friend who recently returned from Iraq, and Tellicherry pepper. Sprinkle the top with the bread crumb mixture.

gallery_6987_347_23226.jpg

To make this a seasonal dish I made an heirloom tomato 'chutney', which consisted of the following:

three heirloom tomatoes, one green, one red, one yellow

sauteed fennel

a no-name EVO

lemon juice

Murray River Australian sea salt

Banylus vinegar

Fireweed honey

In my menu planning I suspected that the lamb will come out extremely soft so I need a bit of a crunch to accompany it and decided on sautéed fingerling potatoes to develop a nice crust on them. The sautéed potatoes consisted of:

homemade bacon fat

Fingerling potatoes

Fleur de sel from Brittney

lemon zest

Here’s the dish:

gallery_6987_347_41997.jpg

This lamb was phenominal! Fork tender, creamy center, intense flavor of lamb and a subtle note of butter.

I'm saving the butter for a future use as I want to try this again, but will go three hours. If that works, I'll bring it down to two hours etc. etc... I also want to try it with half a rack. I'll post the minimal cooking time needed when I get to that conclusion.

Thanks to all for contributing your ideas.


Edited by Really Nice! (log)

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Really nice, this is awesome. Thank you for taking the time to post your lamb as well as the whole meal. I've been very intrigued by this cooking method, but there is a paucity of recipe information which simply gives the "how to' step by step. I am encouraged to try your recipe, breadcrumbs and all as well as other meats.

Thanks again.

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Fabulous post, Really Nice!! One possible alternative would be to finish the cooked lamb under a broiler or salamander to provide some maillard reaction and crispness. This might be particularly useful with the shorter cooking times. It might also help limit the potential for bacterial illness.

When I was in Spain last year it seemed that all the sous vide meat cookery was "finished" with crisp outer coats. It was always incredible :wub:

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I have been meaning to post about temperature sensing through the bag. As the post above says, you can monitor temperatures inside the food during sous vide cooking.

First, buy some foam tape weatherstripping. BUT PLEASE NOTE you want CLOSED CELL FOAM. There are two kinds of foam tape! The open cell type is not going to do you any good at all, so get closed cell foam. It usually says the type on the package.

I generally get the 1/4" (6 mm) wide weather stripping because I use thin needle probes, but you can use 1/2" (12 mm) if you want.

You cut a small square of the weatherstripping and stick it to the bag. Then take a sharp temperature probe and stick it through the foam and into the food. The bag should not leak, and will maintain vacuum.

I use the "minature needle probe" from Thermoworks but others will work.

You connect the probe up to a digital thermometer. There are many makes and brands. My favorite one for most cooking use is by Extech, because you can set an alarm for it to beep when it hits a certain temperature. That is very handy because it can take a long time and you don't want to be watching the thing. Any thermocouple based digital thermometer will do.

Once the probe is in the food, you can put the whole thing into either a waterbath or a steam oven to cook. The probe wires are fine, and the bag won't leak - or anyway it hasn't happened with me, even for cooking times of many hours.

Obviously, if you are cooking many items, pick one that is the thickest to put the probe in because it will be done last.

Note that when you pull the probe out at the end of cooking time, the bag will lose vacuum. So, if you are not going to use it immediatley, it will NOT keep like a regular sous vide bag would. You can simply put the bag in another bag and reseal, or use it immediately.

The main use of the probe is to establish the cooking time. Once you have it set, you don't need to do this every single time if you have identically sized product.

I am in the process of generating a table of cooking times for different products at various temperatures - when I get this done I'll post it if there is interest.

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Fabulous post, Really Nice!! One possible alternative would be to finish the cooked lamb under a broiler or salamander  to provide some maillard reaction and crispness. This might be particularly useful with the shorter cooking times. It might also help limit the potential for bacterial illness.

When I was in Spain last year it seemed that all the sous vide meat cookery was "finished" with crisp outer coats. It was always incredible :wub:

check out the pennsylvania forum's studiokitchen thread for a recent example of this (lamb loin seared then poached sous vide, or the other way around, i don't remember):

http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?showto...ndpost&p=972403

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From Dr. Hollywood... "I could have been a doctor too if it weren't for all that science stuff."

Here's a pdf doc with a lot of sous vide science stuff. There are some temperatures and cooking times included along with a long list of references that might be obtainable on the net.

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I'm saving the butter for a future use as I want to try this again, but will go three hours.

Thanks to all for contributing your ideas.

Three hours doesn't work because the meat wasn't as tender. It was done to the proper temperature, but was tougher than the four hour time. I'll try again with five hours to see what that does.

God, I love food experiments! :cool:

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I started this thread nearly a year and a half ago asking about information on Sous Vide, particularly recipes which would give me cooking times and temperatures. Ironically, I am now going to largely answer my own question.

In the intervening period of time I have bought and read every book on SV in English, French and Spanish, talked to chefs, and done countless experiments of my own. Here are my conclusions on the basic issues for time and temperature.

There are several factors that go into determining the cooking temperature and time:

1. Is SV for immediate service, or to cook and hold? SV got its first big push in cooking meals on an industrial scale for later reheating – for example for airline catering, or servicing low to mid range restaurants from a central large scale kitchen. That is the cook and hold method – the food is stored up to three weeks after the SV cooking. More recently SV has been used by high end chefs for immediate service – i.e. just like roasting, frying or other techniques.

2. What is the product? Obviously, fish and meat are cooked to different temperatures, and even within something like beef there is a wide range of temperatures depending on the cut and on personal preference. The main split is pretty simple however. One set of cooking processes occur rapidly, so the goal is to bring the food to a temperature. Another set of cooking processes – such as tenderizing tough meat – require a lot of time. Collagen breaks down into gelatin at or above 130F / 54.4C, but the rate is very slow until you get a higher temperature.

3. Do you need to sterilize / pasteurize? This is a food safety question, but it is not as simple as you make think because most of what chefs are told about food safety is actually wrong. Sterilization means heating the food to a high enough temperature, and leaving it there for a long enough period of time that it kills microorganisms that could be harmful. Sterilization is required by law for some food products but there is no legal requirement for sterilization of many foods. Otherwise we couldn’t have sushi, carpaccio, or even a rare steak. Cook and hold SV requires sterilization no matter what the product is, but that does not necessarily mean you have to cook at high temperatures (see below).

4. Do you want to cook at the final temperature, or above? Conventional cooking is almost always about using a heat source (oven, steam, poaching water) that is much higher temperature than the food. As a result, timing is important. In SV you have the option to cook at, or only slightly above the final temperature. The cooking is very slow, but as a result timing is not critical you can hold the product for a long time without risk of overcooking. Or you can cook at a higher temperature. This has the benefit that the cooking time is shorter (see below) but you can’t help but overcook part of the product, and you must be careful about timing.

The food safety issue is particularly interesting. Most people think this means cooking to 140F / 60C – that is not correct, it is about both time and temperature. 140F/60C is NOT ENOUGH if you do it for a short period of time – typically you need to be at that temperature for at least 12 minutes. Conversely, red meats can be cooked at 130F / 54.4C and be just as sterilized if they are held for 112 min. Poultry is frequently incinerated in a well meaning attempt to meet food safety guidelines, but in fact the US FDA says it is perfectly acceptable to sterilize lean turkey or chicken at 136F/ 57.8C for 64 minutes. These times come from the following FDA document http://www.fsis.usda.gov/OPPDE/rdad/FSISNo...ltry_Tables.pdf

Many people who have the phobia that below 140F/60C is unsafe do not realize this and will say things like “it is unsafe to do long time duration cooking at 130F”. In actual fact it is SAFER than bringing food to 140F, unless you keep it there for 12 minutes. As long as you follow

In addition, it is not necessary to cook all foods to the sterilization limit – the majority of our food is not cooked to that limit even in conventional cuisine. So, most things that are served medium rare or below, including fish, beef, lamb, duck breasts and so forth are not cooked to sterilization normally speaking, and it is not clear why we would have to do so with SV (for immediate service).

Here is what I do.

I almost always cook for immediate service, not cook and hold. Nothing against it, but that isn’t what I do.

I use laboratory water baths for most of my SV cooking, or a Rational combi-oven in steam mode if there is a large quantity.

I almost always use a cooking temperature that is just marginally above the final temperature. This makes cooking times longer, but it gives a better, more uniform result. If necessary I cut the product thinner to achieve reasonable times. Note that this approach is very different than many SV practitioners, such as Joan Roca. His book recommends cooking most food at a temperature substantially above the final internal temperature, although this is not consistent - for some things he recommends cooking at the final temperature.

I cook most fish (including prawns) to 45C / 113F. That is below the sterilization limit. That is perfectly OK within food safety guidelines so long as the cooking time is not too excessive (i.e. so long as it is less that a couple hours). I would NOT cook thick pieces of fish this way because the cooking time would be so long that some spoilage could result.

Beef and other red meat I cook to 130F / 54.4C. This is what I would term “medium rare” but there is a lot of disagreement on mapping subjective terms like that to temperatures. Depending on the situation I might cook it to sterilization, or I might not.

Tough red meat – such as flat iron steak, short ribs etc I will cook at either 130F/54.4C or 136F/58.8C, from 24 to 72 hours depending on the cut and how tough it is. This gives time for the collagen to break down and make a tender result.

Tender cuts of pork, such as tenderloin I generally cook to 140F/60C. Trichinosis is killed at 137F, and anyway has been eliminated from the food supply in the US and many other places. I would cook wild meat a bit more, and/or pre-freeze it.

Chicken and turkey also gets cooked to 140F, and I make sure that I follow the sterilization times.

Duck breast goes to 130F/54.4C. Duck confit is 180F/82.2C for 8-12 hours – pork or lamb confit is the same.

OK, so given all that the only remaining question is how long to cook a given piece of food. The answer is that it depends on one thing – the thickness of what you are cooking. Heat slowly diffuses through a piece of meat or other food product. The time it takes depends on the thickness and is very nonlinear – i.e. doubling the thickness more than doubles the cooking time.

In a flat slab, such as a steak or cutlet, the relevant thing is the thickness. In a more irregular shaped thing, such a chicken breast or a whole chicken, the cooking time is going to be constrained by the thickest part.

This is true for any kind of cooking actually. Most of what we are taught about cooking is actually wrong. For example, anytime somebody tells you it is “10 minutes per pound” they are saying something that cannot possibly be accurate, because this would imply that cooking time is proportional to the weight. If you take something like a whole bird and scale it up you will find that cooking time is actually proportional to something like (weight)^(2/3) – weight to the 2/3 power. This is because increasing the weight scales up the thickness by the cube root. Since most people are not accustomed to taking things to fractional powers, people substitute a linear relationship. That might work out OK in practice over a small range, but it can’t be accurate over a large range. For example, if you double the weight, the linear relationship would tell you that you double the cooking time. The 2/3 power would tell you to increase it by 59% - that is a pretty big difference.

As a general rule of thumb heat diffusion times go as the square of the thickness increase. So, doubling the thickness results in FOUR TIMES the cooking time. That is a rough general rule of thumb, which is not perfect but it illustrates the nonlinearity of the system. I don’t know why this isn’t taught to chefs more often because it is a fairly easy thing to grasp and use.

A more accurate way is to compile a table of times and thicknesses. I have done lots of experiments, and I have also written some software to solve the partial differential equations governing heat flow. The theoretical results agree with the experiments to extraordinary precision – a tiny fraction of a degree, and/or a tiny fraction of a second. The result of all of this is that I have produced the following set of tables.

Instead of using a table you can use a thermometer probe, inserted though closed cell foam tape. However, it is still useful to have the cooking times so you can plan ahead and know roughly how long things will take.

In each case I list different options of thickness, and different cooking temperatures. I use the low temperatures, but I have included the result for using higher temperatures, for example as recommended by Joan Roca in his book. I have also listed the time difference required to reach one degree less, or one degree more – i.e. it is the time range between undercooking or overcooking by 1 degree C (1.8 degrees F). This gives you the margin of error that you have in the timing. If the cooking temperature is the same as the final temperature, you can’t overcook it, so that is infinite.

Note that the thermal diffusivity of various forms of animal flesh (chicken, meat, fish) is very similar so within the accuracy displayed here, the product type does not affect the cooking times.

I will start with the table for a final core temperature of 54.4C / 130F. I’ll put other tables in other posts.

The first column is the cooking temperature (water bath or steam oven) in degrees C, the second is degrees F. The next column is the thickness of the slab in mm, followed by the thickness in inches. Then comes the cooking time, and the resting time. The resting time as I use it here means the time until the core temperature stops rising and starts to fall. The next two columns are the core temperature at the time you stop cooking, in C and F. Even if you use a digital thermometer probe, you can’t just wait until the food is at the final temperature, because if you do it will overshoot. The overshoot is minimal or non-existent if the bath temperature is close to the final temperature. However, the higher you go, the more the risk of overshoot.

Finally I have two columns showing the cooking time to go one degree C lower, and one degree C higher. This shows the amount of time latitude you have. In some cases it is quite surprising – a multi-hour cook time might only have 5 minutes plus or minus leeway.

It turns out that it is easier to get the HTML formatting correct if I put the table in a post by itself, so it comes next.


Edited by nathanm (log)

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Moderator's Note: Please click here to see nathanm's table for 54.4C/130F final core temperature starting at 5C/41F initial temperature.


Edited by Kitchen Host (log)

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      The moment that Ferran Adria strode towards Thomas Keller on the stage at the CIA/Greystone’s World of Flavors’ “Spain and the World Table” Conference was electric -- as if a giant Van de Graf generator had been turned on. The feeling didn’t subside when Adria took the stage from Keller; it only became more pronounced as the packed crowd rose to its feet, raining applause, admiration and love on the Spanish master. Adria accepted the response with aplomb, and gave it right back to the audience -- and to his fellow Spanish cocineros, who were standing off to the side. He brought each one up to join him on the stage for a rousing thank-you to the conference organizers, sponsors and participants. Once this emotional release subsided, Adria got down to what everyone had been waiting for -- his discussion and demonstration.

      Ferran Adria, with eyes sparkling like the finest cava, began speaking Spanish in a voice as gravelly as the beaches of the Costa Brava, while Conference Chairman Jose Andres translated. The crowd, hushed and straining for every word, moved forward in their seats as Adria explained El Bulli and himself, with a lesson in recent culinary history thrown in. Ferran explained that El Bulli is not a business. While offshoots of El Bulli are operated on a for-profit basis, the restaurant runs without profit as a primary motivation. For example, he said, the greatest difficulty they have is distributing reservations. Given the extraordinary demand and the severely limited supply, he explained that they could simply raise the price of a meal to the point where the supply and demand met. Indeed, the price of a meal at El Bulli is in itself quite reasonable given the stature of the restaurant and well within means of most motivated diners should they be able to get there, and this is how Adria prefers it. He stated that he was not interested in cooking solely for those with the most money. He prefers to work for people with a true interest in exploring the limits of cooking with him. To this end he showed a short film depicting “A Day in the Life . . .” of El Bulli set to the Beatles’ song of the same name. The film showed a couple’s response to the experience.

      Ferran’s voyage into creativity began with a visit to Jacques Maxima at Le Chanticleer Restaurant in Nice, France. He learned from Maxima that to be creative is not to copy. This idea changed his entire approach to cooking -- from making classic cuisine to making his own. Aware of elaborate books of French cuisine, Adria resolved to catalogue his work, the results of which are the richly detailed El Bulli books, published by period. These books, as wonderful as they are, are huge and extremely expensive. During his presentation, Adria announced -- and demonstrated -- that the individual dishes photographed and described in a chronology within each book are all now available online at elbulli.com.

      He finished the philosophical discussion by talking about the general style of haute cuisine that he and others are engaged in. While others have coined the term “molecular gastronomy” to highlight the scientific component of the creativity involved, Adria rejected it, saying that all cooking is molecular: most of his techniques are in fact rather simple and don’t employ radical new technology. Most of the technology that they do use has been around for some time; they have simply adapted it to their own purposes. Nevertheless, he applauds contributions to gastronomy from Harold McGee and other food scientists, and welcomes their collaboration in the kitchen. He has yet to find a term that describes the movement: as of now, he feels that there really is no good name for this style of cooking.

      More than any other single thing, Ferran Adria is known for the use of “foams” in cooking. While he is proud of his achievements with foams, he stressed that while appropriate in some circumstances, the real utility of foams is limited. He bemoans their ubiquity -- and wishes to not be blamed for others’ poor deployment of the concept. In the course of describing this and other techniques, Adria made a point of stating that using them should not be inferred as copying. Techniques and concepts are to be used and shared. He invited everyone to learn and harness whatever they found interesting, and to employ it in to their own pursuits.

      Another set of techniques discussed and demonstrated by the master and his assistant, Rafa Morales from Hacienda Benazuza, included three types of spherification. These included the use of calcium chloride (CaCl) and sodium alginate as well as the converse, and exploration of a new agent, gluconodeltalactone. The original combinations of alginate into CaCl for “caviar” production, and CaCl into alginate for larger “spheres” have chemistry-related limits as to what can be sphericized. In private correspondence, Harold McGee explained to me that Adria described encapsulating a mussel in its own juice. While this would make the dish technically an aspic, unlike conventional aspics it remains a liquid. Adria said that though gluconodeltalactone is very new, and they are just beginning to get a handle on it, he is very excited by it. He also demonstrated a machine for spherification on a larger scale than they had originally been able to do, as well as liquid nitrogen and freeze-drying (lyophilization) techniques. At the conclusion of his demonstration -- and thus the Conference -- the audience once again awarded him a standing ovation.

      While Adria’s appearance was the culmination of the conference, the energy it produced was not just because of his stature in the world of gastronomy -- it was also due to the excitement generated by the conference that preceded it. If there had previously been any doubt, Thomas Keller’s welcome of Adria was a clarion: Spanish cuisine has landed on North American shores and is finding a niche in the North American psyche. Spanish cuisine -- in its multifaceted, delicious entirety -- lives here, too.

      + + + + +

      John M. Sconzo, M.D., aka docsconz, is an anesthesiologist practicing in upstate New York. He grew up in Brooklyn in an Italian-American home, in which food was an important component of family life. It still is. His passions include good food, wine and travel. John's gastronomic interests in upstate northeastern New York involve finding top-notch local producers of ingredients and those who use them well. A dedicated amateur, John has no plans to ditch his current career for one in the food industry. Host, New York.
    • By docsconz
      About Jose Andres
       
      Throughout his career, Jose’s vision and imaginative creations have drawn the praise of the public, the press and his peers. José has received awards and recognition from Food Arts, Bon Appetit, Food & Wine, Saveur, the James Beard Foundation, Wine Spectator, and Wine Advocate. In addition, José has been featured in leading food magazines such as Gourmet as well as the New York Times, the Washington Post, Good Morning America, Fox Sunday Morning News with Chris Wallace, the Food Network, and USA Today.
       
      Widely acknowledged as the premiere Spanish chef cooking in America, José is a developer and Conference Chairman for the upcoming Worlds of Flavor Conference on Spain and the World Table at The Culinary Institute of America at Greystone, November 2 – 5, 2006.
       
      In 1993, Jose moved to Washington, DC, to head the kitchen at Jaleo. From there, Jose took on executive chef responsibilities at neighboring Café Atlantico and later Zaytinya. In July of 2003, Jose embarked on his most adventurous project to date with the opening of the minibar by jose andres at Cafe Atlantico. A six-seat restaurant within a restaurant, minibar by jose andres continues to attract international attention with its innovative tasting menu. In the fall of 2004, Jose opened a third Jaleo and Oyamel, an authentic Mexican small plates restaurant and launched the THINKfoodTANK, an institution devoted to the research and development of ideas about food, all with a view toward their practical applications in the kitchen.
       
      Every week, millions of Spaniards invite Jose into their home where he is the host and producer of “Vamos a cocinar”, a food program on Television Española (TVE), Spanish national television. The program airs in the United States and Latin America on TVE Internacional.
       
      Jose released his first cookbook this year, first published in English, Tapas: A Taste of Spain in America (published in the United States by Clarkson Potter) and shortly after in Spanish, Los fogones de José Andrés (published by Planeta). The book is an homage to Spanish cooking and to tapas, one of Spain's gifts to the world of good cooking.
       
      Jose Andres is passionate, intelligent, dedicated, witty and a fan of FC Barcelona.
       
      Jose has been a member of the eGullet Society since 2004.
       
      More on Jose Andres in the eG Forums:
      Cooking with "Tapas" by Jose Andres
      Vamos a Cocinar - cooking show with Jose Andres
      Jaleo
      José Andrés' Minibar
      Zaytinya
      Oyamel Cocina Mexicana, Crystal City
      Cafe Atlantico
       
      Jose Andres recipes from Tapas in RecipeGullet:
      Potatoes Rioja-Style with Chorizo (Patatas a la Riojana)
      Moorish-Style Chickpea and Spinach Stew
      Squid with Caramelized Onions
    • By gibbs
      With Modernist Cuisine I waited a couple of years and ended up with a copy from the 6th printing run the advantage of this was that all errors picked up in the erratta had been corrected in the print copy.  I am looking to get modernist bread soon and wondered if someone had purchased it recently to check or if someone knew of hand if they have printed any additional corrected runs 
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