I recently received a copy of Thomas Keller's new book "Under Pressure" on Sous Vide cooking. The general concept of a trapped, pressurized cooking bag with zero loss of liquids really blew my mind. The thing that fascinates me with Sous Vide cooking is the lack of any resemblance to normal cooking technique where eyes, ears and taste are used as your primary indicators of progress. The sinister idea of cooking something compressed in a bag with zero moisture loss and having to only use small amounts of spices really forced me to think in different directions in my cooking and preparation ways and really opened my mind to new ideas on how to use classical cooking techniques.
!New is Exciting!
This style of cooking is not for all and requires significant amounts of time and some odd materials. Surely you can do something even cheaper than this but remember that Sous Vide cooking is all about consistency and timing and super cheap might not be the way to go due to lack of consistency. Seeing that the full blown recirculator from polyscience is around a thousand dollars I set off to make something that could achieve a 1-3 degree temperature difference for under 150 dollars. This project came in at right around 130
- 27 Quart or similar size Crock Pot/Roaster 29.99 Walmart
- Ranco Temperature controller 99.99- Temperature Probe
- Small Aquarium Air Pump 9.99
- 3 foot Aquarium hosing .99
- 1 foot section of silicon tubing - Home Depot 5.00
- Zip Ties
- Aluminum Foi
- Stone or Pestle from your Mortar and Pestle
The first step is covering the temperature controllers sensor with the silicon tubing as this model is not water proof. In order to lossen up the silicon tubing, boil it in water for a minute or two. Slip the silicon tubing over the temperature probe and leave 1/2" tubing at the end of the probe. Fold tube over and zip tie to seal.
Fill Crockpot/Roaster up with warm water and plug the Crockpot into the temperature controller.
Situate the controller probe so its even in the center of the water column. Zip tie this to the rack if you have one
Attach air hose to air pump and place end in center of roaster and also zip tie to rack to hold down. You want an even air bubbling in the center, this will keep the water moving at a consistent temp.