UnderGround Forums
 

Food & Wine Ground >> I cooked Sue Veed tonight


6/18/09 11:20 PM
Ignore | Quote | Vote Down | Vote Up
crescentwrench
239 The total sum of your votes up and votes down Send Private Message Add Comment To Profile

Edited: 06/18/09 11:21 PM
Member Since: 1/1/01
Posts: 23508
 
I know it's sous vide but who reads with a French accent?
 
After watching the technique on Top Chef Masters for the thousandth time I thought, "Screw it.  I have a Foodsaver, I can do that".  So I began looking around for stuff I need to cook a steak like Sue.
 
Now, technically Foodsaver says not to use their products for sous vide cooking but they were boiling vegetables in their bags on their instructional DVD so fuck 'em.  
 
What I didn't have was an immersion circulator or the willingness to spend a thousand dollards to buy one.  But I do have a crock pot.  So I broke out the ol' probe thermometer to see what temperature this thing works at.  Unfortunately I have the old Hi/Lo style and even at the Keep Warm setting it was registering a too hot 160 degrees.  So that was out.  Next was my electric skillet.  If you place the dial well under the Warm setting you can get surprisingly cool.  It was going as low as 110.  So I tweaked the dial and checked the temp and tweaked and checked and stopped when I was hovering around 137.  140 is medium and I know you'll say that anything over medium rare is blasphemy and normally I'd agree.  But I was also cooking for the wife and she won't touch mid rare.  Plus medium is the middle and if this worked for that it should work for other temperatures.  Anyway, I shot for 137 to compensate for the temperature swing which was about 2 degrees either direction.  I figure a 4 degree window is pretty good for saving $970.  
 
The steaks I bought weren't grass fed aged prime an(g)us, they were your run of the mill supermarket steaks.  I got a small strip steak for the wife and a heftier ribeye for myself.  
 
I salt and peppered the steaks prior to bagging them, making sure to get as much air out as possible.  I also double sealed the bags afterwards in case any juice got in and made a weak spot.  
 
Then I placed the steaks in the water, making sure they were covered but not touching the bottom.  My 12x12 electric skillet was just big enough for these two steaks.  Any more than that and I am going to have to figure out something else.  That was pretty much it.  I did other stuff for a good 2 hours, only going back every now and then to make sure there weren't any wild swings in temperature.  
 
Later, I cut the steaks out of the bag and patted them dry with paper towels.  They felt a little underdone from the touch test but I'm attributing that to the steak's lack of crust.  
 
I finished the steaks using two different methods.  For my wife's I had been getting my cast iron skillet nuclear hot.  I seared her steak for about 45 seconds on each side.  For my steak I broke out the blowtorch and just poured the fire to it until it was brown and steaky looking.  
 
Results:
The old saying is that a steak is so tender that you can cut it with a fork.  Well, I could.  Okay it was more crushing and tearing but I got a bite of steak off without a knife so fuck you.  
 
Take a look at the picture.

 Ignore the degree of doneness, that's not the focus.  Also ignore the used fork, this was actually my last bite that I just got a pic of before devouring.  What I want you to look at is the lack of strata.  There's no gray around a pink middle, the steak is perfectly even throughout.  The torch only affected the bare surface.  The wife's had a little more penetration due to its harsher searing method but it was still way less than a conventionally cooked steak.  

 
I'm definately going to explore this further.  Next time I will probably use a lower cut of meat and finish it with my supercharged charcoal chimney.  I also need to figure out how to get more volume for more steaks because this is perfect for guests. Once you figure it out it's pretty much idiot proof.  After the setup, which can be done hours in advance, the steaks stay the perfect temperature and you only need a couple of minutes to finish them before serving.  Assuming of course that everyone likes their steaks the same way.  I recommend looking into this and trying it if you can.    
6/19/09 10:41 AM
Ignore | Quote | Vote Down | Vote Up
Kevin Curtis
47 The total sum of your votes up and votes down Send Private Message Add Comment To Profile

Member Since: 7/17/01
Posts: 5432
I would try it, but I'm scared of the bad botulism...

From Wikipedia...

"Clostridium botulinum bacteria can grow in food in the absence of oxygen and produce the deadly botulinum toxin, so sous-vide cooking must be performed under carefully controlled conditions to avoid botulism poisoning.[3] To help with food safety and taste, relatively expensive water-bath machines (thermal immersion circulators) are used to circulate precisely heated water. Differences of even one degree can affect the finished product."
6/19/09 12:04 PM
Ignore | Quote | Vote Down | Vote Up
crescentwrench
239 The total sum of your votes up and votes down Send Private Message Add Comment To Profile

Member Since: 1/1/01
Posts: 23512
The steaks were only bagged up for just over 2 hours.  Is that enough time for that to happen?  I understand that it might be a problem for those 2 day jobs.

Plus that's another reason to put the torch to it, other than flavor.  And not the shitty kitchen torches, a real blue bottle propane torch.  The bad stuff is only on the surface of steaks so I took care of that the same as any other steak that's cooked.  The interior was always 140, but the surface got a quick thousand degree blast.  And the other steak was pan seared as much as any rare steak.  

Now if I do fish or something that might not get the same treatment I might have to rethink my strategery.  

In any event you gotta live on the edge! That dude in Chicago got a 9 foot tapeworm but that's not going to slow down all you sushi eaters.

6/19/09 12:26 PM
Ignore | Quote | Vote Down | Vote Up
Kevin Curtis
47 The total sum of your votes up and votes down Send Private Message Add Comment To Profile

Member Since: 7/17/01
Posts: 5433
No idea on the time thing for botulism.

I was just doing some quick research on sous-vide, and found the above info.

A 9 foot tapeworm?!?
6/19/09 12:29 PM
Ignore | Quote | Vote Down | Vote Up
crescentwrench
239 The total sum of your votes up and votes down Send Private Message Add Comment To Profile

Member Since: 1/1/01
Posts: 23513
Eat Raw Fish ... Get a 9-Foot Tapeworm
Chicago Man Joins International Ranks of Those Who've Been Infested From Eating Raw Fish in Recent Years

Reply Post

You must log in to post a reply. Click here to login.