Getting Started With Sous Vide Cooking

If you've decided to have your first attempt at Sous Vide cooking you are in for a truly unique cooking experience! To make sure your first experience is memorable for all the right reasons, we've compiled a quick and concise guide to this modernist method of cooking, including what you need to do to make it a success. OK so getting started with sous vide cooking – let's go!

A Quick Overview Of Sous Vide Cooking

The term Sous Vide comes from the French expression, ‘under vacuum.' We all know that the French are culinary experts in the kitchen, so the word origin already makes this method very promising.

In simple terms, Sous Vide cooking involves placing ingredients in a vacuum-sealed plastic pouch which is then cooked slowly at a low temperature.

Sous Vide Cooking Is A Cool And Sophisticated Method For Any Food Lover

Serving up dishes that are truly restaurant-worthy is no easy feat. That's likely why most of us work up quite a sweat in the kitchen when we are entertaining. Once you master Sous Vide cooking, you gain the ability to create food delights at a style and level that are close to impossible using traditional cooking techniques.

What Will Your Initial Reactions To Sous Vide Cooking Be?

It's different for everyone. Some people love to try new things in the kitchen, making the experience an immediate pleasure. Other people can be somewhat apprehensive, especially when it comes to a cooking method that may seem a million miles away from their kitchen norms.

Despite any concerns you may have, your first experience of Sous Vide cooking is more than likely going to fill you with awe, surprise, and an exquisite culinary delight.

A Quick Look At Browning

It's crucial to understand the basics to this vital step, but don't worry, they are more than straightforward.

– When you take the food out of the pouch use paper towels or kitchen towels to pat it dry gently. Don't skimp on this step, any moisture on the surface will prevent adequate browning.

– Once you've dried, allow it to sit for 15 minutes. This will give any remaining moisture time to evaporate.

– If you wish to add a coating such a flour, cornmeal, herbs and so on, now is the time to do it.

– When it comes to the actual browning stage, the secret is to provide a high temperature for a short period of time. While you may choose to use a pan, oven or grill technique, there is one traditional method which is hard to beat, and that's to use a searing torch.

Using A Searing Torch

Using the searing torch method brings this cool cooking experience to the next level. This technique lets you control the browning process, is ideal for uneven food and adds a hint of excitement to the kitchen.

Top Tips For Getting Started

– Fully understand the temperatures (we'll discuss this in a moment)

– Embrace those cheap tough cuts of meat. Sous Vide cooking will truly transform them.

– Use the right equipment. The equipment for Sous Vide cooking aren't things you can easily substitute, so make sure your vacuum sealer and immersion circulator are fit for the job. Check our list of the Essential Accessories for Sous Vide Cooking.

Container Size

If you are giving Sous Vide cooking a go first before committing to it as your kitchen secret, then you'll likely want to use whatever size container you have at your disposal.

However, since we're sure that you are going to fall in love with this cooking method, we recommend purchasing a set of containers, for example an 8qt, 12qt, and 18qt. This will allow you to choose the container size according to your cooking needs, hence keeping cooking time to a minimum.

A Quick Word On The Water

Any good Sous Vide recipe will provide details of the water, but just keep one vital point in mind; the water bath should be brought to the correct temperature first, before submerging the food pouch.

The Temperature

Speaking of temperatures, it is one of the crucial elements of this exceptional cooking technique. It's not something for guessing, and you should have a table of temperatures with you at all times when cooking.

You'll see that the temperature for meat will vary from 120F to 150F depending on how you plan to cook it. Vegetables require a high temperature of 185F, whereas fish may be cooked at a low 116F for rare or up to 140F for medium.

Getting Started With Sous Vide Cooking? Summing Up

There is every chance that you will embrace this modernist way of cooking from your very first attempt. With the potential to create truly restaurant-worthy meals in a simple and straightforward way is surely a skill that is worth mastering.

Once you have your first experience under your belt, you'll see that when it comes to Sous Vide cooking, there is no limit to the culinary delights you can create!