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Dinner in Paris are not exactly the same as they are in North America. Sous Vide cooking has arrived. Sous vide (pronounced soo-veed) means “under vacuum” in French. It is a gourmet culinary technique long used by chefs worldwide, but now accessible to home cooks. The sous vide cooking technique involves cooking food in pouches, submerged in a water bath held at a precisely controlled temperature.
What You Need
Having proper sous vide cooking equipment is invaluable when you cook sous vide. Until now, buying a sous vide machine required a substantial investment and a bulky piece of equipment.
The key to sous vide cooking is the “sous vide” (or “under vacuum”) part of the equation. Vacuum sealing foods prevents evaporation and allow for the most efficient transfer energy from the water to the food. To do so, simply place your seasoned food in a plastic bag and remove all of the surrounding air to create a vacuum seal. There are three ways to create this seal:
Use a vacuum sealer and specially designed bags. Foodsaver is a common, and affordable, brand.
Use the “water immersion” method. Place the food in a zipper lock bag and slowly lower the bagged food into a bowl of water, letting the pressure of the water press air through the top of the bag. Once most of the air is out of the bag, carefully seal it just above the water line.
Use zipper lock bags and suck the air out with a straw. This method is not recommended for raw meat, but you can use it for fruits and vegetables.
You can also sous vide certain foods in glass canning jars. While we don’t recommend using jars for meats or bulky vegetables, they make fabulous vessels for cooking beans, grains, and desserts like custards or cakes.