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Sous Vide Question on a Smoker Forum

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    Sous Vide Question on a Smoker Forum

    I was intrigued by Meathead's mention of Sous Vide machines in the Meat Temperature Guide. The idea of getting meat to a desired doneness and being able to hold it there without overcooking appealed to me, so I bought one.

    I sprinkled 3 large chicken breast halves with Kosher salt and a liberal amount of my home-made Chili powder. I vacuum sealed them and plopped them in the water. I cooked them at 158 degrees for 2.5 hours (they were partly frozen when I immersed them). When they were done I seared them in a hot pan in an oil and butter combination.

    The results were terrible! The texture of the meat was as if it was boiled and it was flavourless. Nearly half a cup of liquid rendered out of the meat into the cooking pouch - that was tasty so I poured it on the meat.

    I have heard good things about sous vide but my first impression was so poor I am thinking of returning it. Does anyone know if I did something wrong?

    #2
    According to this chart, you may have cooked it a bit too long at a temp that was too high: https://www.evernote.com/l/AEgAB5ojI...vofUUWfiscXg3A

    I haven't done chicken, but I've never had a better steak than one of the recent ribeyes I used sous vide on & then seared on the grill with AmazingGrates turned upside down. Here's a site with a ton of advice and recipes that I highly recommend:

    http://www.chefsteps.com

    http://www.seriouseats.com/search?te...+vide&site=all

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by MarKoz View Post
      I sprinkled 3 large chicken breast halves with Kosher salt and a liberal amount of my home-made Chili powder. I vacuum sealed them and plopped them in the water. I cooked them at 158 degrees for 2.5 hours (they were partly frozen when I immersed them). When they were done I seared them in a hot pan in an oil and butter combination.

      The results were terrible! The texture of the meat was as if it was boiled and it was flavourless. Nearly half a cup of liquid rendered out of the meat into the cooking pouch - that was tasty so I poured it on the meat.
      For chicken breasts I use 144F for an hour (the core temp of the chicken needs to get to 140F for 20 minutes for food safety, so your exact time may vary). I'm pretty careful about pre-salting food when cooking sous-vide, as it can have undesirable effects, so for the chicken just a little oil and maybe herbs or pepper in advance. Once its cooked I either keep as is for adding to soups, or season & sear for a grilled chicken result. (Note, I've only done boneless, skinless breasts, I don't have a clue how I'd make the skin come out right, so full chicken pieces get cooked other ways). My favorite s.v. dishes are steaks (followed by reverse sear), and fish (sometimes seared afterwards, sometimes not). I've written up a few of my thoughts on my blog http://sousvide.org. -- David

      Comment


      • Dr ROK
        Dr ROK commented
        Editing a comment
        Yes, I definitely should have included David's blog in my post. Lots of good info there too!

      • KC Kiwi
        KC Kiwi commented
        Editing a comment
        ".... I'm pretty careful about pre-salting food when cooking sous-vide, as it can have undesirable effects..... "

        You left us hanging with this comment, please elaborate.

      #4
      Your temp was way too high. I do 149 for breast and 160 for boneless legs.

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