Recent Modernist Blog Posts Page 2

Welcome to the Amazing Food Made Easy blog! This is a place I can share information and updates that don't fit into a specific area on the rest of the site. I focus mainly on sous vide and modernist cooking but if it's an interesting cooking method or fun cooking news I'll cover it as well.

In addition to cooking and sous vide news, how to guides and other articles, there's a lot of different types of information here including:

If you are looking for recipes you can view them on my pages for latest recipes, whipping siphon recipes or sous vide recipes.

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Thanks, enjoy the blog and happy cooking!

Why is the Sous Vide Pulled Pork Temperature Different Than Smoking?

I'm new to sous vide and a little confused. I have smoked a ton of boston butts over the last 15 years and and my magic number is 203 for internal temp usually running 250-275 for 8 to 10 hours (no crutch). I used to cook lower and slower but the above mentioned seems to give me the best results on my smoker (nice bark, tender and juicy).

Back to sous vide. My question is why shouldn't I set my sous vide machine to 203 and run the same number of hours? Everything I have read including the article above has much lower temps. This doesn't make any sense to me since it seems you would still want to get to the same internal temp to get similar results.

If a shoulder is normally supposed to be cooked to an internal temp between 190-205 (see any meat chart) why would that be any different when cooking sous vide?

- Mick

Sous vide pulled pork cut

Thanks for the great question Mick! There's a lot that goes into this and I'll try to clear it up below. Most of it comes down to what you are trying to accomplish texture-wise.

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SO-VIDA Sleeve Heating and Power Consumption Test

Lid cozie close   dsc 1121

We recently were given a SO-VIDA Sous Vide Container Sleeve to test out and review. As an engineer, I tend to first look at new products from an objective viewpoint. Therefore, I thought it would be worth running some sort of a benchmark to determine the effectiveness of the Sleeve from an insulation perspective.

This article examines the tests I ran, as well as the results we obtained.

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SO-VIDA Sous Vide Container Sleeve Review

So vide sleeve corner close

We do our best to keep our readers informed about new modernist cooking-related products. This often includes equipment such as sous vide machines and containers. In this review we are looking at a type of sous vide accessory we haven't seen before, an insulated sleeve for your water bath. It is the, "Sous Vide Container Sleeve" by SO-VIDA and the company provided us with the product so we could do some testing and a review.

The SO-VIDA Container Sleeve (Sleeve) is designed specifically to be used with the Rubbermaid 12-Quart container. The Sleeve covers all faces of the container except for the top and is constructed from 5mm neoprene (wetsuit material). This provides two primary functions: the first is to help keep the heat of the water in the container and thus reduce the amount of energy required during the sous vide cook. The second is to protect the work surface your sous vide container is sitting on, due to the prolonged heat transmitted from the base of the container.

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Got a Sous Vide Machine! Now What?

Sous vide searing steak front

Getting your sous vide circulator is just the beginning! You still need to learn how to use it, pick out some favorite recipes to try, and browse all the cool accessories you can add on to it!

Sous vide is a wonderful method of cooking that makes it easy to turn out delicious, amazing food that will impress your friends and family. However, there are some basics you should understand before you get started, as well as some more advanced techniques to maximize your sous vide experience.

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Best Sous Vide Water Bath Container Systems

Buying a sous vide circulator is the first step in the sous vide process. You can use your circulator in any pot, and if you are just getting started it's a great way to go, but for maximum sous vide efficiency you may want to turn to a dedicated sous vide water bath. There are several ones that we recommend, and each one has its own lids, racks, and insulators that can make it even better.

Here are my top three picks for sous vide water bath systems. Two of them are 12 quart systems that work great for small to medium sized families, and one is a 26 Quart system that is best for large families or cooking for parties.

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Which Sous Vide Machine Should I Buy - Ask Jason

Sous vide turkey breast circulator tall

I'm constantly getting asked what type of sous vide circulator someone should buy. This used to be an easy question to answer because there were only one or two reliable machines but now there are several options, all of which are generally comparable and can get the job done.

I decided to put together this article to help people quickly get an overview of the top circulators. I've focused on the major deciding factors I think are important such as heating power, how loud it is, and the price.

To help with this, I reference a few of our sous vide benchmark tests such as Heating Power (how fast the circulator can heat the water), Sound Level (how much noise does the machine make), and Power Consumption (how much power does the machine use).

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Chef Steps Joule Hands On Review

Sous vide fennel vinegar 5 joule

We have been recommending the ChefSteps Joule circulator as a Top Pick of ours since it came out. That was based on the specs, its performance in the benchmark tests, and Gary's hands on use of it (as shared in his initial Joule review).

Once the testing and initial reviews were done it went into my stack of circulators so I could also get some detailed hands-on testing with. It took me awhile to get to it since I was in the middle of recipe testing, but once I did, it's been my go-to circulator. Here's some of my thoughts on it.

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Oliso PRO Smart Sealer Review

Oliso vacuum sealer lamb 2

I was recently given a free Oliso PRO Smart Sealer to test out and review. I've been using it for several months now and here's some of my thoughts on it.

What the Oliso Sealer Is

The Oliso is basically a small "edge vacuum sealer", similar to a FoodSaver sealer. It works by putting your food in a pouch, closing it, and sliding it into the side of the Oliso sealer. The sealer sucks out the air and seals the bag, leaving you with a bag ready for sous vide or stoarge. It lists for $199 but it usually available on Amazon for around $150.

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Anova Announces the Anova Nano Sous Vide Circulator

Anova recently announced the launch of their newest sous vide circulator, the Anova Nano. It is slated to be sold for under $100 and weighs only 1.4 pounds. It will have a 700 watt heater, and heat less water, but it should be good for small familes or people just getting into sous vide.

We will provide more updates as the unit becomes available and we can do some hands-on testing with it.

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How Does the Kitchen Gizmo Compare to Other Sous Vide Machines?

Kitchen gizmo box book

We recently put the Kitchen Gizmo through our sous vide benchmarks.

The first test shows how long it takes the circulator to heat the water. It went from room temperature to 140°F (60°C) in 31 minutes and from hot tap water to 140°F (60°C) in 8.5 minutes.

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How Does the Oliso Smart Hub Compare to Other Sous Vide Machines?

I was really intrigued when I first saw the Oliso Smart Hub sous vide system. It's a combination of an induction burner with a water bath, kind of like a Sous Vide Supreme on steroids.

I will have a full-review coming up after the holidays, but in the meantime I wanted to share the Oliso's results from our benchmark tests.

How Fast Does the Oliso Heat Up?

Oliso talks about how using the 1500 watt induction burner heats the water faster than most other methods so we were anxious to see how it held up. The first set of tests determine how quickly the circulator can heat the water.

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Museum of Food and Drink: Chow Exhibit

Mofa chow sign

I recently was able to attend the opening of Chow, the latest exhibit at the Museum of Food and Drink (MOFAD). The exhibit is really interesting and explores the history of Chinese-American restaurants, cuisine, and culture.

They have a ton of historic items from Chinese restaurants and several displays that touch on topics from the first Chinese immigrants up through Panda Express. If you are in or around New York, I highly recommend heading down to the museum to check out everything they have there.

While you should definitely go see the museum yourself, here are a few highlights:

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Anova Precision Cooker 900 Watt Release

One of the main areas the Anova Precision Cooker was lacking in our sous vide benchmark tests was the heating time. It was the slowest machine tested for several years. Anova has now addressed that by releasing a 900 watt version.

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How to Sous Vide Turkey

Sous vide turkey serving side

This year for Thanksgiving I wanted to focus on spending time with my family without having to worry about the turkey all day. I'll also be at my mother-in-law's place, which has a smaller kitchen so I didn't want to hog the oven all day.

I looked at a few options and eventually decided to let sous vide come to my rescue! I put this write-up together for other people interested in using sous vide for their turkey, either on a holiday or just a regular night.

The process for sous viding a turkey is a little more involved than just tossing it in the oven, but almost all of it can be done ahead of time, the meat turns out amazing, and it reduces a lot of the stress I always feel when I'm roasting a whole bird.

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Experiments to Determine How Long Will a Sous Vide Ice Bath Keep Food Safe

Safely delaying a sous vide cook is arguably the greatest benefit to having a WiFi enabled sous vide machine, especially if you are often out of the house when you want to start a sous vide cook.

Sous vide ice bath compliation

In order to delay the start time, use a combination of ice and water to keep your food out of the danger zone until you are ready to start cooking it. You can learn more about how and why to delay a sous vide cook.

Because keeping the food cold is critical to safely delaying the start time, I wanted to more closely examine just how long a combination of ice, water, and food will actually stay cold when sitting out at room temperature. To accomplish this, I ran a series of experiments that monitored the temperature of the water over time.

The rest of this article talks about the experiments and shares the results.

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