Main Benefits of Sous Vide Cooking
Sous vide cooking affects food in different ways, here's a breakdown of some of the most important effects of sous vide and how they apply to the home kitchen.
This information, as well as over 100 recipes is available in our book Beginning Sous Vide
which you can get at Amazon.com or as a pdf download
Cooking Meat Sous Vide
The ability of sous vide cooking to precisely control the temperature of the water, and hence the food being cooked in it, can have amazing results on meat. The two common ways of cooking tough cuts of meat, braising and roasting, both have the drawbacks of drying out the meat and over cooking it before it is tender enough to eat. Both these techniques can produce fantastic results but sous vide can bring something different to the table as well.
When cooking meat sous vide you can avoid both the drying out and overcooking of the meat. By setting the temperature correctly, normally around
60C / 140F, you can actually cook your pot roast, short ribs, or other "roast" cut to a perfect medium-rare temperature while still tenderizing it completely. This is something that can not be achieved with traditional cooking methods.
Cooking Fish Sous Vide
On of the struggles when cooking fish with traditional methods is how hard it is to cook correctly Fish quickly goes from undercooked to overcooked and sous vide can fix this. By setting the temperature around 58-62C / 137-144F you can be sure that the fish will cook to the exact doneness you are looking for.
Some fish also develop a unique texture when cooked sous vide, salmon is a great example of this. The texture of sous vide salmon is somewhere between sushi and medium-rare salmon and is unique to sous vide cooking.
Cooking Sous Vide Seafood
One of the potential issues with cooking seafood over high-heat is that it can become rubbery. Sous vide allows you to slowly cook the seafood over low-heat, ensuring that the result will be silky and tender.
Cooking Sous Vide Vegetables
A stumbling block when cooking many vegetables is trying to get the inside done without drying up the outside. Sous vide allows you to achieve a uniform doneness throughout your vegetables and also helps them hold together better.
General Sous Vide Benefits
Sous Vide Requires Less Liquid
Many traditional cooking methods can be made easier and more efficient through sous vide cooking. When you poach, make confit, or marinade food you normally need a large amount of the liquid in order to cover the food. However, with sous vide cooking you only need enough liquid to cover the food in the pouch it will be cooked in. This allows you to use much less liquid and saves money as well as being less wasteful.
New Textures with Sous Vide
When you vacuum seal your food for sous vide cooking there can be some amazing results from the vacuum sealing alone. The vacuuming affects food differently but many become denser, such as vacuum sealed watermelon. It also brightens many colors in food and helps food to hold its shape.
Consistently Perfect Results with Sous Vide
Since the temperature and time are rigidly controlled, when you cook with sous vide you can be sure that the results will be the same every time and easily replicable.
This article is by me, Jason Logsdon. I'm an adventurous home cook and professional blogger who loves to try new things, especially when it comes to cooking. I've explored everything from sous vide and whipping siphons to pressure cookers and blow torches; created foams, gels and spheres; made barrel aged cocktails and brewed beer. I have also written 10 cookbooks on modernist cooking and sous vide and I run the AmazingFoodMadeEasy.com website.
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