Sous Vide 101
Introduction to Sous Vide
I started using the Sous Vide cooking technique regularly in the restaurant in 2010 and soon after, it became an indispensable tool in my home kitchen as well. I have taught Sous Vide classes over the years, and every student comments on how it has changed the way they cook at home. Once you get into a rhythm with the techniques and tools, you will wonder how you ever cooked without it.
The term “Sous Vide” means “Under Pressure” which refers to the vacuum sealed bags used in this cooking technique. Heavy duty ziplock bags can also be used in most cases (for short cooking periods) if you carefully remove as much air as possible and submerge the product with a weight (dinner plate) if it floats to the surface. An immersion circulator is the tool used in Sous Vide cooking. This device is inserted into a vessel of water and heats it to a constant temperature while circulating it, creating an even-constant flow. The benefits of sous vide cooking range from greater consistency and nutrient retention to an increase in protein tenderness and ease in kitchen timing. Slow cooking proteins in a circulating bath of warm water produces a product that is more tender and juicy.
I will link sous vide videos below as I add them to the site, or you can just search “sous vide” in the search bar on the recipe page. I have a lot of great sous vide recipes to share. A great resource for sous vide information and recipes is the website: chefsteps.com. Their Time & Temperature chart is outstanding and takes the guesswork out of Sous Vide cooking. The joule app that controls the circulator is amazing, with videos, recommended settings for particular foods and a wide-array of inspiring recipes.
Below I will list some links to the Sous Vide equipment that I use, and highly recommend.
See my recipe for Mexican Pulled Pork cooked ”Sous Vide.”
The Joule circulator is the smallest and sleekest sous vide tool available at just 11 inches tall and 1.1 pounds. I have used other brands and none have offered the performance of the Joule. The only disadvantage with the Joule is to those who are technology challenged. There are no controls on the unit itself. Everything is controlled through an app on either an iPhone/iPad or Android device (not included). The Joule comes Wifi and bluetooth ready and can connect with Bluetooth alone, or you can control it from anywhere with Wi-Fi. Heats up fast: 1100 watts of power for hyper-fast water heating. Dinner comes out predictably perfect, every time.
The Everie Sous Vide Kit comes complete (with everything but the circulator) with a 12 Quart container, lid with side mount hole to snugly mount Joule cooker to the container, an insulation sleeve and a sous vide rack. The lid minimizes water evaporation and hinges, allowing you to access the product and refill water if necessary. The sous vide rack’s dividers are mounted to the base and keeps your food separated, allowing everything to cook evenly. The insulation sleeve locks the heat in, reducing the heating need of the unit.
The Weston Vacuum Sealer is a great tool to have in the kitchen for both Sous Vide cooking and for the preservation of foods.
It is quick and easy to use…basically you are either sealing and making bags from rolls or removing the air from bags and sealing the ends. The bags are very convenient, coming in both quart and gallon sizes (many other sizes are also available), and the rolls are great for odd size items like racks of ribs and larger roasts.
The Weston 1-quart vacuum seal bags are the ones I use the most at home. Perfect size for individual ribeye steaks, four chicken thighs, a few fillets of salmon or a couple bunches of asparagus. They are heavy duty, 8×12-inches, double ply and 30 mil in thickness. They are also made from food safe material, BPA-free. Box contains 100 bags, ready to use.
The Weston 1-gallon vacuum seal bags are convenient for larger items like pork butts or for when you are feeding larger groups. They are heavy duty, 11×16-inches, double ply and 30 mil in thickness. They are also made from food safe material, BPA-free. Box contains 100 bags, ready to use.