Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Ghetto Sous Vide


The $50 answer to an immersion circulator/water bath? It's plenty adjustable, but seems a little too good to be true. Paired with a FoodSaver, it's tempting . . . .

Picture from Overstock. Nice garnish.

5 comments:

OhioMom said...

I would so love and use a foodsaver, sigh....:)

Stuart said...

Well, you'd need to babysit the crock pot for the whole cooking process. I've seen some DIY sous vide projects that provide a mechanism to monitor and adjust the temperature automatically. Naturally, I can't find any detailed information now that I want it. I did find something that actually looked far more practical. Sous Vide Magic costs $130 and will adjust the electric power available to your heating element to maintain a perfectly constant temperature. That wasn't much more than the DIY method and this one won't involve soldering. One blogger claims that the company has excellent customer service. They helped him select his heating element. He's using a rice cooker. I saw a newspaper article about another home cook using this same device although from a different manufacturer, I think. This guy uses an aquarium bubbler to circulate the water.

You might be able to hack together a magnetic stirrer of the sort used in laboratories. I've seen DIY projects for those, too. It seems like this bubbler might be easy and cheap enough that it's worth trying first.

It seems like you could cobble something together for less than $200 which is a fraction of what the PolyScience immersion circulator would cost. About $1000, right?

The CFT said...

OHMom--it's a good investment, even if I'm still squemish to cook food in the stuff.

Stuart. I've seen the PID you referenced (I think that's what it is--http://auberins.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=8&products_id=44). They seem to suggest an inexpensive rice cooker is best with it. I think you're right on a new proper unit costing $1K, although if this isn't a fad I think we'll see consumer models soon. The crock I pictured claims to allow you to select a temp, however I question the accuracy and the fluctuations. For now enjoying sous vide will have to be a restaurant thing for me. I’ve got enough trouble using the stove.

Anonymous said...

I am using SousVideMagic with a Black and Decker rice cooker and the results are amazing! Highly recommended.

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