@bbf Multi temperature sequences are generally time dependent, and always involve heat settings that are higher than your target temperature. Sous vide is extremely flexible on time (a steak can go from 1 to 4 hours, with little change) because the water bath temperature is always held at the target level.
Remember, meat doneness is based on temperature, not time! The time in a typical recipe has to worry about preventing overheating. With sous vide, overheating is impossible - your only concern is heating it long enough to heat it through. Hence, very open-ended cook times.
Sous vide isn’t all about “open ended” cooking times, it’s about different textures and flavours that can be the result of being able to control temperature precisely, mostly on the “lower than normal cooking” temperature side.
A side effect of low and slow, is that it is harder to “over cook”, but that in no way means that cooking times are meant to be very “open ended”.
That depends - do you want rare, medium, or well done chicken?
“Sous vide isn’t all about “open ended” cooking times, it’s about different textures and flavours that can be the result of being able to control temperature precisely, mostly on the “lower than normal cooking” temperature side.
A side effect of low and slow, is that it is harder to “over cook”, but that in no way means that cooking times are meant to be very “open ended”.”
Sous vide was a favorite in restaurants long before it hit the home market because it was open ended - a handful of steaks could sit for hours, needing only minutes to be seared and served.
Just wanted to jump in here and say that I got a sous vide circulator a couple years ago and it is my favorite kitchen gadget by a long shot. I suck at grilling anyway but even if I didn’t, sous vide gives you a way better quality of food than anything else.
I always overcooked steak, but now I can puddle them for an hour, sear them for a couple minutes, and they’re perfect:
Pork Tenderloin is also great for the sous vide (I usually stuff mine with cream cheese and jalapeños; tastes better but looks ugly as hell)
My first Thanksgiving with just me and my wife, I made Turchetta and it turned out amazing
I also can’t cook burgers for shit because they always fall apart, expand too much, or don’t cook all the way, but now I can buy those big party packs of burger patties, freeze them in separate bags, and I am always ready for a burg
It really just kicks ass all around.
Want to fry chicken breast but you’re always afraid of undercooking it? Sous vide those birds first and then bread/fry.
Want some bbq but you don’t have a smoker? Drop a pork butt in for a day or so and enjoy.
Want some hot Sake but you don’t want it to explode in the microwave? Just plop the bottle in the sous vide bath for a bit.
It really is the best.
(Edit: forgot to mention but carrots are also very very good after puddling for a bit)
@Moose@sammydog01 I also read somewhere that (At least in the U.S.) pork quality standards have gotten good enough that the old “need to cook it until it’s very well done” standard is no longer necessary.
@Moose@sammydog01 Pork really is supposed to be cooked medium rare. Anything more and you’re looking at dry shoe leather. And like @Dweezle said, the longer you cook something at a sustained temp, the less bacteria will survive. For example you can kill all salmonella in a minute by cooking pork at 165F, or you can kill all salmonella in half an hour by cooking pork at 140F. The difference is if you want 165F pork (gray and overcoooked) or 140F pork (pink and awesome).
Though with things like Turkey or chicken, you might have to verbally explain that to guests. And they might not go for it depending on how old school they are.
@ekw@Moose a pork butt really needs at least 48 hours (72 is even better). It won’t have the smokey flavor, but it’ll have the tenderness. Some people will combine a SV cook with a couple hours in the smoker. I prefer to apply rub after the SV and put it under a broiler until it caramelizes.
@dtwsportsfan Looking around on Reddit looks like someone used two in their bathtub to heat up the water for when their water heater was out. Other threads mentioned Ball Sweet and other debris from yourself might not be good for the motor, and in general if it were to short out while you were in there might be a bad time.
This looks like a duplicate of the Monoprice Sous Vide cooker. If it is, I highly recommend it.
With my inexpensive Monoprice (this is cheaper, dammit!) I’ve cooked some of the best Salmon and Burgers I’ve ever had bar none. Just for those two dishes it’s worth it.
FYI: You don’t need a vacuum sealer to Sous Vide. Just put your ingredients into a zip top bag and submerge it in water until the top is just above the waterline. That removes all the air just as well as a vacuum sealer.
One really good resource is the Serious Eats site. Here’s their Burger recipe.
@squishybrain While the submersion method does remove enough of the air for sous vide cooking, it doesn’t remove as much air as a vacuum sealer.
A vacuum sealer offers other conveniences, too. I can buy steaks at Costco, vacuum seal them, and toss them in the freezer. When I’m ready to cook one I just take the bag out of the freezer and toss it in the water.
@craigthom Agreed. I have a vacuum sealer and use it for your stated purposes but I just wanted those less fortunate to know that they can partake in the pleasures or Sous Vide without needing to purchase anything additional.
@madmod20061 Eggs do change the longer you cook them, even at a fixed lower temperature, but the water isn’t going to evaporate for a day or two, and this thing will, I hope, shut off if the water gets too low.
@brhfl@madmod20061 inch of water in the pot, toss them in a steaming basket, 6-12 minutes depending on how well you want them done. I peel mine under running water, which makes it EVEN EASIER to peel, but I’m also lazy. We’ve got 4 hens in our back yard that started laying maybe a month ago, so we’ve been learning quick how to use eggs
@madmod20061 Finally found this thread again. (There’s about 4 sous vide threads on meh now). BUt I thought for sure the thread I was looking for had a pic of soft boiled eggs done in the sous vide. (Does that need capitalized?).
I think I’ll start with eggs.
These meh threads are really valuable, and I don’t think I’m going to venture outside meh for sous vide info. (hmmm, possible Meh cookbook in the future?)
btw, in another meh sous vide thread, someone mentioned using a plastic cereal ‘keeper’–and that might just be the ticket for me.
As always, thanks members of meh.
I finish mine on the searing grill… I can say you would miss nothing… except overcooked steaks.
The flavor you are referring to is likely the milliard reaction, as mentioned you can get it with a torch, searing grill, or normal grill… even an oven or pan… the key is to keep the steaks moving… you don’t want to end up cooking them while giving them the crust… flip them every 10 sec or so.
Fakespot doesn’t like the Amazon reviews. Of the thirteen one star reviews twelve say it broke and one doesn’t understand what sous vide cooking is.
In general I’m a fan of sous vide cooking. My favorite discovery is a twenty-four hour chuck roast (you may need to add water if your container isn’t covered).
It comes out medium rare. It’s not tough but it does require a knife and puts up resistance to your teeth, like a steak but maybe a little less dense. It does not fall apart the way a pot roast does. The flavor is a little beefier than a steak.
And of course steaks turn our fantastic. I also pasteurize eggs.
I’ve got one of these. Had it since Nov 2017. So far so good. It’s 1000w and I have an Anova. Both work just fine but I do like that I can use the WiFi and Bluetooth features of the Anova. $50 is a steal for this. I paid $75 on sale.
I love doing sous vide, even though I traditionally suck at cooking. I had one of another off-brand cooker and it died halfway into cooking an entire turkey for Thanksgiving (it was inhaling too much steam from my insulated setup). Fortunately, I was able to modify my setup and finish cooking when a friend with the same model loaned me hers - at 10PM - thereby saving my bacon (er, turkey). Thanksgiving rocked due to an awesome turkey and great friends (and family, and… lots of other good stuff). The seller of my original sous vide cooker was out of stock, though they graciously refunded my money. I’ve been wanting to buy another one again ever since.
In for two, as I find I need two different temperatures running every time we entertain.
High Speed Browning in the oven after a long night at the Sous Vide Hotel
@mehcuda67 I have gone to spatchcocked turkey. It’s quick (cooked a 14# bird in 90 minutes last weekend) and it makes for great turkey!
That being said, I LOVE sous vide steak. I’ve been doing the Redneck sous vide for a while. This will allow me to up my game.
@mellowirishgent three words: precise temperature control. You can tell the difference between a steak cooked to 132°F and 140°F. And you can cook it all the way through edge to edge that exact temperatureb that you want and remove the element of time that is critical to many cooking techniques. Your guests are late? Leave the steak on for another half hour, NBD. It’s still going to come out perfect.
@djslack Thanks for the info what I found most interesting is you cant overcook so I put a steak in for an hour at 128… 3 hours later its still 128 so no worry NO MORE oh I just overcooked and ruined the 30 dollar steak. Who knew? LoL
@djslack@mellowirishgent It’s an oversimplification that you can’t overcook, but it’s a lot harder. A steak cooked 48 hours is going to be mushier than one cooked 2, but you probably aren’t going to be able to tell the difference between 2 and 4.
@bramby2@chienfou Maybe your rite at this point 1361 sold in 12 hours so that’s the amount that proved your wrong,I just bought this item and can’t wait to use it, no disrespect intended do appreciate your thoughts
122 for chicken? This is wrong
It doesn’t matter how long you leave it in. (In fact more then a couple hours would be unsafe since its under 130 degrees
You can cook white meat to 145 but the texture grosses me out because I’m not used to chicken having that texture… It is great in sous vide though and pretty much the only way I cook chicken
I have this Chefman sous vide cooker and it works perfectly. Got it on Amazon. Don’t use it much but there are a few things you can do with sous vide that you just can’t really accomplish any other way. I made egg bites in little jelly jars, fussy to prep but so perfectly cooked in the water bath, chicken breasts come out great and you don’t have to worry about overcooking. Just sling 'em in a ziplock bag with some spices, press out the air, clip them to the side of the pot you are using. I don’t even sear them, just slice them up and serve with vegetables or rice.
@robin0575 I bought it on this Meh deal and have noticed that it rattles periodically. Does yours do that? I emailed Chefman customer service, but no response yet. I see articles about taking about Anova sous vide devices to straighten the skirt or stirring shaft, but I don’t see any way to take the Chefman apart or adjust the shaft.
I have not noticed it rattling, it sort of buzzes but that’s the water circulating. To be fair, I don’t know that I would notice rattling, though - loud and busy household. I use it in a big pot, there is a lip on the pot but it still attaches fine and works perfectly for me. As noted, not an everyday workhorse since most things I prefer cooked by other means, but so far so good, it’s been used about 5 times and for over an hour each time.
Had the original Anova (the one that was designed to choke on its own vapor) - loved it. It died after 2 years of sucking its own vapor, was given a replacement of the new WiFi/BT model and while it works I’m not a fan (reduced power, don’t need yet another thing on my phone to present me useless info that’s 10 feet from me)
I’ve also have a PolyScience - which is a monster and great for “big cooks” (I do whole hams).
For the price this is a great way to try sous vide - you’ll be hooked. Aside from it being the best tasting steak ever, there’s nothing like being able to put a steak on to cook, head out to the gym followed by a stop at Home Depot, and come home to a perfectly cooked steak that’s (after a quick torching) ready to serve. And if you’re a fan of salads with sliced chicken, wait til you taste a breast that you spiced and cooked at 149 for 90 minutes… it’s simply amazing (even using the current wave of “muscle chicken” that seems to have taken over every grocer)
I also do a lot of smoking - I will (cold) smoke first, then sous vide.
@Pufferfishy how long do you smoke the ribs/what temp, then how long (and what temp) do you sous vide. I really enjoy the smoker I got for Christmas a couple of years back! Made a ton of chipotles last year when my jalapeños decided to go batshit crazy!
For slow cooks like ribs and butts I only get the smoker up to about 190 - 200, and with the convection mod I made, I only use about 1/4 the pellets to get the same “smoke” - for a butt that size I used 1/2 cup of pellets and I just light them off in a large stainless tea strainer (see Amazon - they got strainers up to like 4 cups in size). That will smoke for about an hour (which is, in my experience, equivalent to about 4 hours non-convection smoke) For salmon I will heat to ~ 225 and I only use a palm full of pellets - in 20 minutes I will get them smoked (and cooked) perfectly.
Ribs I will use about a 1/4 cup of pellets and give then a smoke equivalent to maybe 2 hours.
I use applewood for everything except poultry, then I use cherry.
Ribs I do at 164 for 48 hours minimum. Then chill completely and sauce and finish under broiler or on grill if that’s your thing. It starts with a rub that they sit in (in the vacuum bag) for 24 hour minimum.
For butts I do 164 as well - but check the web as opinions vary (those that like to slice will do closer to 150) in what texture is ideal. I like to shred. That will cook 3 days.
@this1 lol - thanks, no, I’m just a nerd that likes to cook. My social media consists mostly of reposting stolen memes on Facebook.
If you have any particular questions about this feel free to ask. Much like most cooking, there’s always going to be some trial-n-error to get things working to your taste, and on your equipment.
Another point - I bought a (self-adhesive) BBQ gasket kit and sealed the door of my smoker… ~$9 on Amazon. That cheap MasterBuilt leaked like a sieve.
I also use 2 probe thermometers - one to monitor the temp in the smoker and one to monitor the meat (especially important if you don’t want it actually cooking during the smoke). I have parts to control the convection fan based on box temp but have yet to implement (no free time)
I should also note with those temps above that the pellets will make quite a bit of heat themselves in a convection set-up - I initially tried cardboard box smoking to test out the convection idea with a $5 Chinese plastic fan - it melted the plastic fan I had in there with no other hear source, surprised it didn’t burst into flames. But it worked great so I made the mod on the MaterBuilt.
@Pufferfishy From the initial post, it seemed almost like cold smoking always just worked better for you, in fact you went to great lengths to turn the hot smoker into a cold smoker?
So since I’m not looking to shell money out for a smoker that I’m just going to have to hack to be flexible enough to be either a hot/cold smoker, and since it seems like you’re still smoking just to achieve a color/bark and still doing the actual cooking in the sous vide, could you go into how/where you came up with the janky cardboard box setup?
I’m thinking I’d probably not use cardboard, based on the heat, something you just confirmed, I’d also probably position the fan a bit of a ways away from the coal by using a duct as an offset between the fan and the chips.
Thinking maybe I’ll just repurpose an old plastic cooler (one of the big ones that can handle 20+ gallons) and again keeping the burn chamber separate from the cooler and fan via a duct. I’m thinking as as long as the fresh air flow to the woodchip’s burning box is kept fairly minimal, it won’t allow the chips to burn hot enough.
@this1 “…you went to great lengths to turn the hot smoker into a cold smoker?”
A bit of a story there. I always wanted to be able to do salmon and cheese. Salmon takes really low heat, cheese takes “cold smoke”.
The reason I now do more of a cold smoke / sous vide cook is that my smoker sucks balls at long cooks. It has walls that are too thin (despite being double-walled they didn’t but anything of insulative value between them, so it’s nearly moot) and I found out after numerous ruined pieces of meat that the thermometer on the door was off by like 40 degrees (reads too cold) and the thermostat that controls the element has a “slew gate” (the coldest point at which it finally comes on and the hottest point at which it turns off for any given point you set it) to be like 75 degrees - it is just redic to try and get this to hold 225 degrees. The sous vide allows L-O-N-G cooks at precise temps to melt all the gross parts and keep the meat SUPER moist. (when I make a fresh ham from brine to table it takes like 10 days!)
“…could you go into how/where you came up with the janky cardboard box setup?”
It’s as close as the YouTubes! Well - that seems to be the only copy of this video left, I am guessing Alton had a fallout with the world. It’s horrible quality, but basically it’s what I copied. And there’s Instructables for cold cardboard smokers, as well as dozens of other YouTube vids by now as well…
As far as not using carboard - get a box big enough and control the burn of the pellets/chips good enough and it’s no concern. The open design of the tea strainer allows air on the pellets from every direction - increasing the burn rate (and ergo the temps). Check out the vids and how-to’s and you’ll get the idea. It is not that hard to do, but making an external fire box is a bit of a pain, and can get expensive (I could not believe how hard it was to find fittings for 3" duct that didn’t cost $40 each, and a cheap metal mailbox for under $30…)
@Pufferfishy I’m interested in hearing more about your convection mod. I have a very similar masterbuilt box smoker that I have a PID project going on it to improve the temperature control. I kind of set it aside when I got my pit boss, though. I still want to do the PID but just making it a cold turbosmoker sounds intriguing too.
@djslack It’s nothing anywhere near as sophisticated as a PID - it’s just a convection fan from an Ikea convection oven (literally a search for “convection oven fan” sorted by “lowest price with shipping” and buying the first one on eBay) with a power cord hard wired to it - it runs as long as it’s plugged in. As stated, I have parts to make it thermostatically controlled, but have yet to have the time to implement.
The W00t! link in my post above has pics of the fan mounting (all of 5 minutes with a drill after dropping $1.75 for screws at Home Depot).
My plan was to cycle the fan only when the heating element was not running in an effort to keep any “baking effect” to a minimum. Honestly this needs a slower fan. I’ve toyed with the idea of removing a couple fins from the fan blade, but don’t want to induce an imbalance. What I have isn’t ideal - but it works for what I use it for. So well that I have yet to feel a need to purchase a smoker any more sophisticated.
Note my comment in that thread about mounting the fan on the side rather than the top - there’s a lot of moisture in there when you use water to keep the humidity up, and the top-mounted fan slings a lot of “juice” around after a while.
@Pufferfishy, switching to a DC fan will make speed control simpler, though if your problem is lack of time and you already have the parts to deal with the AC fan, then it probably isn’t worth it to switch out the fan.
@baqui63 yeah - coming up with the means to toggle the fan on and off (a single REX-C100 & a pair of thermocouples - the control design and getting the parts ($28 total via TomTop) ) was easy - finding a simple / quick way to implement not so much.
Like I said, I’ve made with work out just fine - if it were more of a PITA I’d put some effort into the PID. For now it’s back-burner’d (see what I did there?)
finish in oven
Is that correct?
I love my smoker, and have been just putting stuff directly in there to smoke/cook. I am intrigued by the addition of the sous vide step since I REALLY like the steaks I did in the ‘redneck sous vide’ setup I mentioned.
PS the addition of a gasket and fan is also pretty interesting.
@baqui63@Pufferfishy BTW, have you tried smoking cream cheese and/or oil…
OMG those were the favorite Christmas gifts I gave out this year (as well as the chipotle powder).
I am fortunate enough to have access to a metric shit-ton of pecan since I have several trees here, and the apple and pear wood from the prunings on my trees also gets ‘re-cycled’ so I don’t buy pellets or wood to use.
@chienfou I have not tried cream cheese - and now I’m intrigued! I do scrambled eggs with cream cheese, salmon, and chives - the idea of a nice smoky cream cheese sounds excellent.
Oil is great (sort of discovered that one by accident… lol) - it lets me add “real smoke” to a lot of sous vide cooking.
I had access to cherry at one point, and used it to make a turkey (that was phenom) - fortunately for me what I grabbed off the pile was dry as I learned after the fact that green cherry can make people seriously ill. The pellets are a bit of a cop-out, but the pellets I use are 100% wood (no fillers) and leave almost no ash, which is a plus. The big thing is getting smoke from “real wood” in my setup - no way to do that with the low temps I use combined with the Florida humidity (hell, I actually have to microwave the pellets for a few minutes first to drive out moisture)
@Pufferfishy@Pufferfishy Cool. 1) I use a rub mix that I make myself in the food processor that I’m fond of (can’t remember where I got it from) I’ll have to try the Meathead version. 2) Smoked cream cheese. “Who would of thunk?”
I use the WM brand ($1.62 per 2pack of 8oz bricks). Just flatten out the foil it came in and set it on the rack. I actually use/re-use a (looks sort of like the metal lathe you put up for brick or stone work on a vertical surface) that I have cut to size for a couple of different batch sizes (2 bricks, 4 bricks etc.) because I am all about the smoke getting to both sides of the cheese, and it makes the entire thing a nice tan color when done, with a bonus grid pattern on one side . I rarely fire up the smoker without putting at least a couple of bricks in for a couple of hours. (BTW, no it doesn’t melt through the grid. Just put a little “Pam” or other oil (or some of the smoked oil you make) on the surface before you put the brick on it, then let it cool down after you smoke it. If you flip it over when you first get it out of the smoker and let it cool you can run your finger over the surface to encourage the little brown diamonds to release. As a bonus, I vac-pak them using my Food Saver from meh…) 3) AMEN to humidity being a bitch locally (central AL here) 4) I keep my rub in an old Parmesan cheese shaker so I don’t get my fingers into the mix. ) 5) I love that you have to dry out your pellets since a lot of sites recommend soaking your wood in water for an hour or so. (Of course that’s if you are using the element in your smoker to heat the wood. Not if you are trying to get it lit and smoldering by itself.) 6) smoked oil is my “go to” for roasting veggies (esp Brussel sprouts), potatoes, cooking eggs etc. I bought a couple of brownie pans at the DollarTree and put about 12-16 oz (1/4-1/2 inch deep) EVOO in it when I make it. After smoking I put it in empty “Starbuck’s Frapacino” bottles I recoup from one of the girls I work with. (I have had several folks I gave some to for Christmas offer to buy the oil so I can smoke some more for them. Ditto on the cream cheese.) 7) BTW, you can also smoke “vegan cream cheese” such as the Tofutti version that comes in a tub at Whole Foods (daughter, son-in-law and their brood are all vegans). This stuff is a bit soft, so you can’t put it on the above mentioned grid. I just put it on some tin foil (or a small pie pan) then, when it cools, flip it back into the tub. It’s my 10 year old grandson’s favorite food right now!
Smoke on Brother!
(OK, this got a bit lengthy… can you guess I also like to cook???)
@chienfou I am a long lost relative. I need to get myself on that Christmas list .
It is sounding like I might need to break down and get a smoker. I love smoked cheese and the oil sounds fantastic! A friend makes some extra pulled pork and brisket in his every now and then. I never thought about other stuff in it.
@speediedelivery yeah, I’ve smoked:
ribs, butts, pork loin,pork chops, steaks, hamburgers, sausages, chicken, turkey, salmon, EVOO, cream cheese, vegan cream cheese, and chipotles in mine. In my opinion, an electric smoker is definitely the way to go. It’s super easy to use, and pretty hard to mess up once you figure out the temp settings that work for you.
That being said, I am really looking forward to playing with the sous vide cooker though.
(see how I hijacked this thread, then tied it all back up at the end… )
I know folks sing praises about this cooking process but I’ve never tried it. My wife has serious concerns about cooking anything, regardless of temperature, in plastic. I’m not sure she’s completely wrong to worry, either. That said, I’m pretty good on the grill, so it’s not like I’m eating shoe leather on the regular or anything.
@Pufferfishy We definitely avoid cooking in plastic in general. No microwaving saran wrap (we use wax paper for splatter coverage) and do mostly store with glass – though plastic containers are present as well – but again cold storage only. Same for freezer bags and stuff.
I definitely get not using wraps in the nuke, as that shit melts with almost no effort, but as far as other storage and cooking vessels once I verify they have no PBA and have been deemed “food safe” I don’t concern myself - there’s a billion other things that are going to kill me faster than my Tupperware.
You could conceivably seal it in a tight foil packet (assuming foil is OK for you) and then put it in the bag and into the pot. A minimal air gap shouldn’t matter once the temps are equalized in the bath…
@narfcake@rpstrong Interesting! I’d need to do that on the down-low. If my wife saw me cooking meat in a cooler, she’d have a conniption (she’s actually much more reasonable than I’m letting on here. Just a bit of a germophobe and deathly afraid of food-borne illness (i.e. vomiting)).
@ACraigL@narfcake This is a great time to use one of those cheap Styrofoam coolers - they’re terrible for durability, but are still terrific insulators. Blow three bucks on one and give it a test run - fill it with 130 degree water and see how well it holds its temp. (If it drops more than a couple of degrees per hour, you might want to nest a couple.)
Of course, Omaha steak type boxes are even better. More volume and thicker walls are both desirable.
One caveat: The foam chest can leak, so set it where it can drain.
Actually, I bought my wife a sous vide cooker last christmas, and we tried it for the first time tonight on a couple of Filet Mignon. She vac packed 4 of them together and cooked for an hour; I was concerned that the large package would not get hot in the center and still looked pink on the outside/ way underdone at the end. When I opened it they were done perfectly, and just needed a little browning in a cast iron skillet. Definitely going to experiment with this thing a lot more.
I just got some 6qt / 1.5 gal food service containers (amazon) and use those. Not big enough for a roast, but for 2 steaks it’s perfect for me and the wife. I have an Anova V1 so will probably give it away or this new one.
@rpstrong In my experience that should read “the foam chest WILL leak…”
I tried several different ones, from the 3/4" thin walled cheap disposable ones to some that are 2-3" thick, much denser, and used to send temperature sensitive chemicals to our lab. They ALL leaked. Eventually I settled on putting a large plastic trash bag in the cooler before I put in the water. This is part of the reason I am now buying this item… (but it was fun to play with if you could leave it outside or in the sink).
@chienfou I used an Omaha Steak type frozen foods shipping box, about 2". It leaked, but a nearby bathtub made life easy.
And I was a lot happier ‘investing’ $85 or so when I already knew it would work. And no regrets. It has so small a footprint that I don’t store it, I just shove it into a corner of the counter top, just past the sink where it is normally used every week or so.
I have an Anova (with useless Bluetooth) that I bought in July 2015. At the time they were $180 but Amazon had a Lightning Deal for $140 and I had $40 in reward points so I felt pretty good getting it for $100. I still use it frequently and love it. Over- or under-cooked fish and meat are a thing of the past. I’m so tempted to get one of these as a backup/second unit.
Okay, you guys convinced me to try this. I assume it will work on metal nonstick pots? I just stick the food in an open freezer bag and clip it to the side of the pot? Where should the food be clipped in relation to the device? I’ll probably come back with more questions once I try using it. I’m mostly going to use it for veggies, so the order name is on target:
@craigthom Hmm. How big? Firehouse Subs sell 5 gal pickle buckets for $2, the money goes to help firemen. I’ve bought several for yard work. I could probably find a second hand tamale pot cheap, those are quite large and tall. Storage is a problem, though, my kitchen is comically tiny, 6’ x6’, I shit you not. One thing that attracted me to the device was that it doesn’t take up a lot of space.
You do not need a special container to cook with the Chefman Precision
Cooker. Any receptacle that can hold a minimum of 2 inches (50 mm) of
water and can handle the weight of the immersion cooker will work.
Sous vide can work in a pot, pan, large salad bowl or cooler.
but at least one of the Amazon reviews complains about not having a pot it would work with.
I don’t have one of these, so I can’t give you a definitive answer. I guess you’ll find out.
@moondrake a decent sized cooking pot you probably already have is fine. I usually use my 12qt stock pot or one of our pasta pots, but depending on what I’m cooking I also have used other things.
You’ll probably want to seal the bags, at least I’ve never done otherwise. If you place them in the water open and let the water press the air out as you lower the bag it’s easy to get a “vacuum” effect, but any amount of air you leave in the bag can expand when it’s heated and may make it float. Clips are handy to keep the bag in one place.
I keep putting off buying this…like I’m sorta believing I’m gonna have more money in few hours or something.
So, how is this pronounced?
There’s nothing worse than me telling a charming story, bragging about my latest sophistication, and when I’m done with the story, I’m bet with blank stares…and then them going ‘oh!’ and offering a pronunciation correction.
This is a lot of money for me to be spending on probably something I’m only going to use once, (hello, instapot).
I’m limited to about “Honi swa qui mal y pense”, (A John Cale Album), and “Au Chante”,(from Rocky Horror…oh!oh! I knew there must be something from Bryan Ferry, from Roxy music…“bete noire”). Qu’esta-ce? (Talking Heads, Psycho Killer).
Hi team Meh this is more of a suggestion than a complaint, I would be willing to pay 2x the price of VMP if you could get me the product in 5 days or less ? I’ve actually received merch. from China quicker than you guys, I know China ships for pennies but a week to process is Ugg besides being Meh. LOL However I do find your site to be one of the highlights of my day go figure can’t wait for my sous vide, and the 5 tower deal was superb, Ty Team Meh you guys are Awesome !!
@Thumperchick I understand it’s not in your business plan, Maybe it was a polite way of saying your ship times are really slow, why is it so hard to get the product out within 48 hours of buy time? Maybe it’s me lol but ty Thumperchick for the quick get back.
@MrMark@Thumperchick Actually it would put Meh out or business or their offer price would include shipping so no the price would go up, your always gonna pay it’s all about profit don’t forget that.lol
@MrMark@Thumperchick I have no clue I would need to analyze enough data to make a decision, My guess is they are growing every year and hopefully the new tax breaks helps their profit line, the new product they are offering is outstanding, here’s a suggestion when they have the fuko maybe just send one to every Vmp member of course billing them then offer whats left to the general public it’s my biggest pet peeve on this site, would be a nice way to reward the Vmp membership’s.
Just looked at the final picture for this sale. I can only imagine what orifice “Nurse Rached” is headed for with that thing. Maybe that ER visit at 2AM for a simple problem you have had for 2 weeks should be reconsidered…
Turns out it’s too deep for my Dutch oven, so I’m going to have to go looking for a 2nd hand tamale pot before I can try it out. Shouldn’t be too hard to find around here, just gotta make time to go looking.
Arrived today. Will decide to swap for my trusty Anova One (OG edition). Anyone with a preference? It’s a few years old now, and still chugging along strong. Has the tech improved in the Chefman enough to switch? Or is the Anova just that much better built, considering the cost and appearance on meh of the Chefman?
@mike808 idk, the OG Anova has got some staying power if it’s lasted this long. Long term build quality may be where the chefman and other lower price units may not measure up. But until then you’ve got two so you can cook meat and veg at the same time!
@mike808 my anova bt (original 800watt) one keeps on keeping on… I tested it last week with a new thermometer and it’s still 100% accurately holding the temp… no idea if the new products have changed since Electrolux bought this division.
@thismyusername Same boat here. Mine predates the BT and wifi models. I’m just worried it will conk out without a backup. Have to say the Chefman looks more polished design wise. Then again, it is the OG Anova im comparing its looks to. On the other hand, I’m cooking in a fugly igloo ice chest I took a hole saw to.
Every time I turn it on it goes for about three seconds, beeps, and shuts off. Anyone else experience this? Do I just have a defective unit? I’ve tried more water, less water, different containers, different temperatures, and different cook times all to the same result.
@jonnyrocket@jreppart The timer on mine appears to be bad. I set it for 12 minutes and it counted to 11:50 and then kept switching between 11:50, 11:49 and 11:48. That’s not a big deal, between Google Home, my phone, and my microwave, I am surrounded by devices with timers. It did cook the eggs just how I wanted. Much ado for two eggs, but it will be nice for company.
@jreppart@jonnyrocket I had a problem too with mine beeping and it was because the water kept going above the max fill line on the unit. Not sure if that’s the issue on yours but once I lowered the water below it I never had an issue
I finally found a nice thrift store enameled stock pot big enough for this monster. The downside is that it’s as big as my kitchen. I have no idea where I’m going to keep it. I’m trying it out this morning for 167 degree poached eggs.
Just opened up mine and used it for steak last night. I’ve perfected my broiler medium rare steak technique, so was curious how the first time sous vide would taste (with all the newbie errors that come with a new cooking method).
Is it done? How do I know it’s done? Do I have to wait? Oh, it’s done. Opens reused ditchweed shake bag, empties out steak, does a test cut…
My god, it’s beautiful. Perfect medium rare.
Pan sears gorgeous steak in freezer-burned margerine and five year old reused canola oil from a jug on the porch.
Texture: more like a pot roast than a flame-cooked steak. Pan searing definitely has to be hotter and longer than my usual pre-broiler pan-sear. Much salt and pepper was added to make up for lack of browning.
Summary: foolproof perfect medium rare, but sear the eff out of it (red hot skillet, maybe 90 sec per side) to get that great exterior browning and flavor.
@zippyus I’m trying steak tonight, 1" thick 8oz sirloin. These come wrapped in thick deli pepper bacon for $5lb at Albertsons. I’ve been taking off the bacon and slow frying it, then quick frying the steak in the bacon fat and crumbling the bacon and some blue cheese on top. Sauteed green beans with butter and garlic on the side. I’ll be doing all that tonight, but pre cooking the steak sous vide first. These steaks come out pretty darn good my way, so the sous vide is going to really have to be on its game to be worth adding 2 hours prep to this 30 minute meal.
@moondrake Will it add that much time? For my inch and a quarter or maybe inch and a half steaks the sous vide phase took about 70 minutes, and I could do other things in parallel since I didn’t have to fret over it once it was cooked (unlike my broiler method where 1 extra minute turns a medium rare to a medium)
@moondrake yeah this is one of the things that threw me about whether I was doing it right, different recipes list different times or a wide range. I’d love to see a chart that explains it all for me. But I cooked mine at 133 because the recipie listed a longer time, maybe an extra 45 min, for cooking temps under 130.
@moondrake@zippyus Without research to back this up I believe that 130 is right at the edge of pasteurization. You can kill bacteria in say 5 seconds at 215 degrees, but it’s more like 30 minutes at 130 (again, made up numbers) because it’s a function of time at temperature. The additional time is probably erring on the side of caution.
Note that if you’re pan searing your steak after the cook, you might not need to worry about pasteurization if it’s not been penetrated because you are going to subject the surface to temperature that will instantly kill any bacteria. But I’m not a food safety expert so don’t take my word as gospel here.
You also don’t want to cook for extended times at low temperatures below 130 because you may support the growth of some bacteria that will leave toxins that can survive searing or pasteurization.
@zippyus you need to rest your steak and dry it to sear it. letting your steak come close to room temp will give it time to dry or pat it dry with a towel. you could also dust with corn starch if you want improved browning. should only take about 50 seconds to a minute.
Well, mine got here promptly, then sat in my home office for a while until I could take it for a spin. That day came yesterday.
plugged it in and clipped it to a pot of tap temp hot water… reading was right on target at 116.
turned it to heat the water to 132 degrees in anticipation of using it for med rare steaks.
water heated in less than five minutes to the correct temp. Checked it with a probe thermometer that read about 132.6 depending on where in the pot I put it.
ran it for about 75 minutes.
preheated the BBQ grill, pulled the steaks and seared them about 90-120 secs (didn’t have a watch on…)
OMG. They were fantastic!
This is definitely a HUGE step up from my “redneck sous vide” setup I had used a couple of times to check out the concept. ABSOLUTELY well worth the meh price at $50!
Looking forward to playing with it some more.
Not sure why the fist pic is sideways, but it doesn’t seem to matter how it is aligned on my computer and the edit window is closing…
@chienfou I used it for some sirloins on Thursday for a dinner party, then finished them on a wood fired grill. Albertsons has these 8oz bacon wrapped sirloins in a 2 pack for $5 and we all buy them, so everyone is familiar with them. We all agreed that the steaks were dramatically more tender sous vide than when grilled or pan seared, but didn’t notice much difference in flavor.
Mine worked once, second time beeps after 2-3 minutes, turns off and a solid red light comes on. Customer service said a bad sensor. Filled out the forms, sent in all the required information, cut the cord and sent photograph as requested and voila. They sent me an air fryer. So far no response to my complaint that I don’t want an air fryer.