What is sous vide?

The sous vide way of cooking was invented in the 1970's. Basically, food is placed in a food grade safe bag. The air is removed from the bag with a vacuum machine. The bag is sealed. The food in the bag is submerged in a temperature controlled water bath where it will cook to perfection.

What are the health benefits? The food that is cooked in the sous vide method is never heated above boiling, therefore the nutritious portion of the food is not destroyed due to high heat. The flavor is also locked inside and will not dissipate. All of the vitamins and minerals are retained within the bag.

What are the advantages to use the sous vide method of cooking? Besides the health benefits, sous vide also enables you to hold dinner. In other words, it is not possible to over cook the food. The temperature of the water bath is set to the desired doneness of the food. This is accomplished by setting the water bath to the determined internal temperature of the food being cooked. For example, if a medium rare steak is desired, the internal temperature is between 128° to 131°. The water bath is set to that temperature and because the temperature will never be exceeded, the food will never over cook. This enables you to hold food until you are ready to serve. Flavor is not lost. Unlike other methods of cooking, the flavor of the food is maintained within the bag. The vacuum process causes the food to intensify in flavor because the juices are not lost. The juices actually baste the food. The food is being cooked at a low heat over a period of time which allows the flavors to develop.

More bang for your buck. The low heat process of the sous vide method will not cause food to shrink. Medium rare steaks and hamburgers are almost the same size after cooking as they were before cooking. Meat that is generally tough can be made to taste like the most tender cut of expensive meats by cooking at a low temperature. Buying inexpensive cuts such as flank steak and cooking it in the sous vide method will duplicate the taste of a wonderful prime rib at a fraction of the cost.

The sous vide method does not require high heat like an ordinary oven and only uses minimum energy. It literally costs pennies to run and will not heat up the house.

It is possible to cook a week or more worth of meals. With a little planning, entire meals can be cooked and then refrigerated or frozen. The convenience of simply re-heating entire meals from appetizers to desserts is amazing. Dinner parties are now easy. Instead of toiling away in the kitchen you are able to enjoy the party and your guests.

Featured Recipe

Pumpkin Spice Cake

Tired of the same old pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving? Why not enjoy this fabulous sous vide Pumpkin Spice Cake topped with warm Carmel sauce. Happy Thanksgiving!


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