Day 47 and Sous Vide with Chef Jeremy

8 Sep

Yesterday was day 1 of Sous Vide, which means “under pressure” in French. Can you tell which steak was seared in a pan and put in the oven and which one was sous vide and then seared on the outside for a quick minute afterwards? Each of the steaks and pieces on the right in the above pictures was cooked sous vide; the ones on the left were seared in a pan on high heat and then put in the oven until medium rare. Anne and I enjoyed the sous vide steak more and Bobbie and Mark enjoyed the “cave man” style steak (seared on very high heat in a pan) more. The sous vide steak was softer in the middle and was more moist, we thought. The inside was a different texture, but I liked it. The sous vide prep was a raw steak (no seasoning) vacuum packed in the chamber sealer and then cooked sous vide at 125 degrees F for 26 minutes, then taken out and seared in a hot pan for about 1 minute on each side. Here’s the chamber sealer and one of the sous vide machines that our ribs went into:

We also tried eggs sous vide at 146 degrees F for several minutes. They were like a sunny side up egg, but looked poached and both the whites and yolks melted as they hit the tongue. Weird. I don’t love runny eggs that much unless there’s something like a great bread to sop it up with, so that wasn’t my thing. Here are the eggies:

One other item Chef Jeremy showed us was how to chamber seal and sous vide creme anglais. Instead of cooking it over a bain marie and tempered, everything is put in a blender and then in a bag to vacuum seal. Then, it’s “cooked” at 179 degrees F until it was done (can’t remember how many minutes). I think the point of that was to show us how a liquid could be transformed sous vide and also to make sure we knew that you had to be very careful to not put too much liquid in the bags to be sealed, lest you wreck the chamber sealer machine if liquid gets sucked into the motor. Here are a few pics of the creme anglais demo:

Going back… thanks, Carnet for the guest post. It wasn’t my best dinner party to date (Carnet gives me too much credit, here), but it was darn good. I seem to recall Carnet’s 40th birthday at Shannon and Fred’s was quite a tasty Mexican blowout. But, for French-inspired cuisine, Sunday’s dinner was pretty lovely. I’d do the corn soup again in a heart beat, and true to the French form, I strained both the corn soup and avocado soups, so they were both very silky and made the texture contrasts of the trout and chives in the corn soup and the tomatoes in the avocado soup, pretty nice. I don’t have exact recipes for either soup, as I winged it along the way for both…tasting and adding more liquid until I got the right consistency of each, but here’s a general recipe you can use for the corn soup:

Roast corn kernels from 6 ears of corn in the oven at 425 degrees F, in olive oil, salt and pepper, until a bit golden, but they still have some crunch to them (maybe 5-10 minutes?). Put corn in a food processor with some shallots and a bit of onion that you sauteed in a pan for a few minutes, along with some vegetable stock (or chicken stock will work, but I had organic vegie stock on hand, so that’s what I used), a couple of splashes of heavy cream (maybe more), 1-2 tablespoons of marscapone cheese (because I had it and it was a good thickener) and just a small squirt of lemon to balance the very sweet, sweet corn that I had. If you have excellent corn, this soup is going to be beautifully sweet! Then, adjust seasoning; you may need more salt or more liquid, but don’t make it too soupy at this point, as when you strain it, it will be pretty thin if you use too much liquid. Then, strain through a fine strainer until it’s velvety. Refrigerate until ready to serve in cold cups or bowls. Right before service, top with smoked trout and chives. The trout will sink to the bottom, so be sure to tell your guests to dive down for a surprise. The avocado soup was a similar prep, but obviously I didn’t cook the avocados. Additionally, I added lime juice and a hit of cayenne to the avocado, so that it had a very slight acidic component to balance the sweetness of the corn soup.

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2 Responses to “Day 47 and Sous Vide with Chef Jeremy”

  1. Shannon September 8, 2011 at 1:57 am #

    I absolutely MUST stop reading your blog on an empty stomach… I always need to go nibble on something in the frig right after to keep the growling at bay :o)
    Instead of investing in a sous vide machine, I think I’ll stick to pressure cooking; it’s an interesting concept, though….
    The dinner you prepared was beyond ‘darn good!’ We will offer up our kitchen and deck anytime you want to practice!

  2. Savory Simple September 9, 2011 at 12:55 am #

    That sounds like a great class! I was disappointed that my school barely covered sous vide. Since we all split up tasks I barely had a chance to work with it.

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