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ChrisTaylor

Compressed/marinated fruit -- sans chamber sealer

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I'm preparing a dish from Daniel Humm's cookbook. One minor component of this dish is a compressed peach. Thin 'half moons' of peach are vac sealed with Sauternes. I don't have a chamber sealer. My usual approach with a liquid or fat is to freeze it and add it in solid form to the vac bag. Obviously that's not going to happen in this case. 

 

What are my options? I understand I will not attain a result as good as what Humm does but I am prepared to accept this. I accept that there will a textural difference. Would marinating the slices of peach in a tub with the wine be 'close enough'? Using the displacement method and a zip lock bag? Could I attain a better result with a more left-of-field approach--injection 'brining'? What about burning off (as in, with a match) enough alcohol so I could freeze the wine and marinate it in a bag using my strip sealer? If I manage to get it in a bag would applying weight to the bag in any way replicate what vacuum compression does to a piece of fruit?

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If you have a whipping siphon, you can do pressure infusion. That's the closest thing to vacuum compression that's not actually vacuum compression. Otherwise, I'd just marinate the fruit in the wine. Using an edge sealer isn't going to do anything for you.


Edited by btbyrd (log)

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Any way you can find a faucet aspirator locally? Any lab supply and the like should have them and they're inexpensive.

Same results as a chamber vacuum and easier in most cases (meaning the chamber sealer may require multiple cycles compared to the aspirator to achieve the same result.)

 

VacMaster VP215 compressed on the left ~$850....faucet aspirator set-up compressed on the right ~$25.

 

6sv9Wzi.jpg

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It seems an iSi is good at getting flavors out of things, while a chamber vacuum is better at getting flavors into things.

 

Rapid infusion is a different iSi technique than pressure pickling. From the Cooking Issues blog post I linked to:

 

I use an ISI whipper for rapid infusion into liquids, because under pressure, liquid is forced into the pores of foods and then that same liquid violently boils out when pressure is released, bringing the flavor with it. The liquid takes on the flavor of the solid, which is good. When you are trying to put flavor from the liquid into the solid, instead of the flavor of the solid into the liquid, the boiling is a problem because the liquid doesn’t stay inside the solid. The solution is pressure pickling.

 

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Any way you can find a faucet aspirator locally? Any lab supply and the like should have them and they're inexpensive.

Same results as a chamber vacuum and easier in most cases (meaning the chamber sealer may require multiple cycles compared to the aspirator to achieve the same result.)

 

VacMaster VP215 compressed on the left ~$850....faucet aspirator set-up compressed on the right ~$25.

 

6sv9Wzi.jpg

 

DiggingDog, do you think you could elaborate on how to do compression with a faucet aspirator? That looks very interesting but my Google skills are failing me at the moment. 

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I have a faucet aspirator and use it for compression stuff - so I guess I can answer this for you.

You need some kind of rigid chamber to hold what you will be compressing and the liquid. I've used the round canisters that come with a FoodSaver - the lids have a 1 way valve. Slice whatever you're looking to compress into thin sheets, and lay them in the bottom of the canister, and cover with the liquid you want to infuse them with. Connect the hose that came with the canister (that fits the valve) from the canister lid's port to the vacuum port of the faucet aspirator (this may require some effort depending on how things mate) and turn on the water. You should get a decent vacuum relatively quickly - say 15-30 seconds.... you should see bubbling going on in the canister. Then press the canister lid's release valve and you should hear a whoosh of air rushing back into the canister, which will force the liquid covering your thin slices into the thin slices. You will see an instant change in appearance. You can repeat this process a few times to get more compression.

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Thanks Kenneth, I'll have to give it a try. Can I attach this to my kitchen faucet, or would I need to use the faucet in the yard to get the proper pressure?

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Attach it to your kitchen faucet .

You may need an adaptor.

The colder the water you run through the aspirator, the greater the vacuum.

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