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francois

Sous Vide: Recipes, Techniques & Equipment (Part 2)

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While cooking the above, I also cooked lamb loin sous vide at 60C for 3 hrs. Served it for dinner today with a sauce made from demi glace and lamb jus, along with some shitake mushrooms and rice.

I make a very similar dish but stuff a mixture of shiitake mushrooms and bread crumbs between the loins. It's more labor intensive, but the presentation is really cool.

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Flatiron steak is called "paleron" in French. Works very well sous vide. I do 131F / 55C for 24 hours

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I'm sorry that I don't have any experience with octopus sous vide, but I'd love to hear if you make any progress with it. It seems very interesting and I have no idea how sous vide would work on that type of protein.

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I cooked rib eye steaks sous vide tonight. Salted and air dryed them under refrigeration for 2 days, then sealed them with minced garlic, butter, pepper and a touch more salt. Cooked them at 125' for 1 1/2 hours, pulled them out and seared them in a very hot french steel pan. The flavor was good, but I missed that flavor from melting fat hitting hot coals. Also the texture wasn't as firm as I'm used to.

Maybe next time, sear them on the grill first?

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Duck confit sous vide question. I cooked the legs (Muscovy) for 11 hours at 180 degrees F. Chilled in an ice bath and refrigerated overnight. Reheated for 10 minutes in 165 degree water bath and then seared in a hot copper pan.

The problem was that the fat wouldn't sear properly -- a lot had rendered during the cooking process and it just stuck to the pan/melted when I tried to sear it in a pan lightly coated with Canola oil (making for a less than stunning visual presentation).

I am curious whether others had had similar experiences with their confit and if they use other methods to brown the legs (sear ahead of time, broil, propane torch??). (The taste - by the way - was sublime but it was not a good looking finished dish).

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The best way I've found to crisp up the skin is under the broiler. I usually put the confit legs on a sheetpan in a slow oven, under 300'F for about 45 minutes and then turn on the broiler and they crisp up beautifully.

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What about Duck Breasts cooked sous vide. Is there a benefit to cooking them this way (they obviously are not tough like a short rib)? If so, what times and temps do you recommend?

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Confit made with Moulard or Pekin Duck can be crisped in the oven or in the skillet. On the other hand, Muscovies with their thin skin are better when crisped in preheated hot fat in a skillet.

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What about Duck Breasts cooked sous vide.  Is there a benefit to cooking them this way (they obviously are not tough like a short rib)?  If so, what times and temps do you recommend?

Duck breast sous vide is awesome. Here's my take.

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Has anyone got any experience cooking octopus? Suggestions for times/temperatures?

thanks.

I have had it served to me in restaurants, but I don't have the time/temperature for it.

I would start at 45C / 113F

Nathan

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What about Duck Breasts cooked sous vide.  Is there a benefit to cooking them this way (they obviously are not tough like a short rib)?  If so, what times and temps do you recommend?

Duck breast sous vide is awesome. Here's my take.

How did you decide on 4 hours, instead of 2, 3 or 5? Did you go by trial and error? intuition? science? Same for water temperature.

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Water temp. was described by Nathanm's famous and valuable tables. Four hours just seemed right to me. I didn't have the option to do a full scientific flight of times, but it seemed to work very well for me.

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Hmmm, I lurked on this thread for weeks trying to find one kernel of truth, one scintilla of rationale, one soupcon of logic as to why "sous vide" is demanding so much attention.

Alas, my powers of perception may be failing me in my dotage. So could someone please explain to me the advantages of this style of cooking? Is there more to it than "boil in the bag"? Why would anyone take those extra steps in the cooking process to further denature what are perfectly good ingredients, much less increase the time factor? And, does the term "sous vide" mean that the death knell has tolled for "carmelizing" which was the buzzword of the past 10 years or so? Scads of fads, huh?

Strange! :unsure:


Edited by Ben Hong (log)

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The advantage to cooking sous vide is that, if it's done correctly, the food cooks to perfect doneness each time. In addition, there is no loss from shrinkage and the the item (fish, poultry, meat) retains all its natural juice plus evenly absorbs the seasoning included in the bag with it. Finally, there is no boiling going on. Food is cooked sous vide in the range of 135°-155° Fahrenheit.

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Ben this is a technique that results in a totally different texture. Try cooking a boneless squab breast for only 10 minutes sous vide at 140°F. The texture is exquisite. Chicken breast (normally dry and unappetizing) remains moist and flavorful when cooked sous vide to 130°. The proteins are by no means denatured and a brief searing after resting can produce perfect caramelization

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Electric Bill Question --- does anyone know what impact an immersion circulator (mine is Polyscience - old, analog model) would have on one's electric bills? My bill for December and January where I did quite a bit of sous viding has sky rocketed (by about $400/month -- not dissimilar to using window air conditioners in the summer. It didn't occur to me that the circulator could be the culprit until it kept repeatedly blowing a fuse today.

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hmm. I think you can do this:

Look at the back of your machine and get the wattage. Let's say it's 1000. Now get your electric bill and find the KWH rate. Count the number of hours you think you ran your machine and multiply them together. Say your rate is high and it's .10 and you ran your machine 10 hours a day every day. That's 300 X .10 or $30.

For simplicity I used a 1000 watt number. If your machine is 1500 or the like just multiply the wattage and hours and divide by 1000 to get the KWH and then multiply by the KWH cost. If you can't find the KWH cost on your bill just divide the total by the KWH's.

Do I pass or flunk math?

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I made a pork chop sous vide a few days ago. Cooked at 145 for about 1 hour. All i put on it was some BBQ rub, as i had to throw it together quickly.

It was outstanding. Juicy, flavorful and tender.

jason

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It is possible (this has happened to me) that your electric company estimated your bill instead of actually checking your meter (based on a warmer month) then, at the end of December, actually checked your meter, realized they had undercharged you, and put the extra on the bill. They may even have split the undercharges over the two months to avoid angry phone calls for sudden $800 jumps in the bill. Check the bill carefully (they may or may not disclose this practice on the bill with an asterisk or some other tiny mark and some fine print.)

Failing that, call them and ask.

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Longer cooking times at final tempertures question. Let's say that we are cooking a duck breast to 131 degrees. It is 1" thick at its thickest point so according to nathan's tables it goes into a 131 degree bath for 41 minutes. What would the effect be on the breast if it stayed there for 2 hours or even as long as 8 hours?

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In my experience longer time results in a more tender texture, with no loss of flavor. I routinely cook turkey breast at 143 F for 12 hours.

One of the benefits of sous vide is that it's much harder to overcook if you cook at the desired 'done' temperature, but eventually you will get texture changes in the food.

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