Well that’s what I thought about a year ago before I discovered the sous vide cooking method. I’m not too surprised that it took me this long–because I’m a home cook, not a chef, and cooking sous vide at home is a relatively new option.
When cooking sous vide, the food cooks in a sealed bag (vacuum sealed or zip-locked) at a low, very precise temperature, in swirling water. This ensures that food is cooked evenly to a precise temperature; and when cooking meat, this process retains the juices.
…and I can do this at home?
Yes! Sous vide cooking at home has probably been around for longer, but I started hearing about this a year ago through ChefSteps. The sous vide method has actually been around for a long time but mostly in restaurants because the units were big and not ideal for home use. That’s not the case anymore, and Joule made it possible for me.
Joule by ChefSteps [sponsored post] is the unit I’m using. Other companies have now developed sous vide cooking units for home use too, but most of them are quite large and clunky and they’re not easy to store in a kitchen at home.
Joule by ChefSteps is really small and fits easily into a kitchen drawer. How’d they create such a compact tool when others are so large? They were brilliant…that’s how. They didn’t add any displays or controls on the unit (other than one power button). This allowed them to keep the unit small without compromising on power. The Joule is completely controlled through an app on your phone (Apple and Android). You set the time and temperature, and even select what doneness you want. If you’re unsure, you can watch short video clips in the app to see what the doneness will look like, and then choose. There’s no guess work! And for me, it means I get to combine two passions…cooking and technology. How cool!
Well… I’m kind of hooked! Actually, I LOVE IT! I received my Joule about two weeks ago and I’ve already cooked 4 meals using the unit. If you’re a steak fanatic, you have to try this thing! My kids’ reactions… “OMG! Dad! This is so good!”. They’re steak lovers too–not sure who they take after 😉 (the apple didn’t fall far).
You can cook so much using this method. Use it for vegetables, creamy desserts, meats, fish, poultry. Can you imagine how easy it would be to cook perfect mashed potatoes this way?!
This is a completely new way of cooking for me and I’m curious to see what others are doing with sous vide and I’m excited to try my own new twists. It’s definitely not grandma’s (at least not mine) way of cooking, but I’m pretty sure that after one bite, she’d approve 🙂
You’ve heard the saying, “there’s an app for that”. Sous vide using the Joule takes that to the next level. Innovate and eat well, friends.
Sous Vide Cab Strip Loin Roast... with Joule
- 2.4 lbs (1.1 kg) Cab Striploin Roast
- 1 1/2 tsp coarse sea salt
- 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 4 sprigs fresh thyme
- 3 cloves garlic, cut into 2 or 3 slivers each
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- Fill a large pot with water and place it on a heat protected surface (see notes).
- Place Joule (or other sous vide unit) in the water. Joule has a magnetic basic, so it can stick to the bottom of a metal pot. Alternately, you can clip the unit to the side of the pot.
- Set your temperature and timing and preheat the water. Our settings were "temp = 149 ºF" and "time = 3 hours". After searing, our cut of meet was cooked medium. Feel free to adjust to your preferred doneness.
- In a large plastic freezer size bag (like ZipLock and PBA free), place the meat along the bottom of the bag, sprinkle the salt and pepper over the meat. If you vacuum-sealedable plastic pouches, that's even better, but not required.
- Add the sprigs of thyme and pieces of garlic around the meat.
- Pour the olive oil over the meat.
- Seal the bag, making sure to remove as much air as possible. Removing the air helps sink the bag into the water without floating.
- Place the bag in the pot, making sure the area of the bag with the meat is completely submerged. We clip the top edge of the bag to the side of the pot to hold the bag submerged and to avoid water entering the bag if the seal opens a touch.
- Start cooking! When using Joule by ChefSteps, you simply press the start button on your app to count down. You'll be notified when the meat is done!
- Preheat a cast iron (or other heavy pan) between medium high and high (hot!).
- Add a tbsp of vegetable oil to the pan.
- Remove the Striploin Roast from the bag and pat it down with a paper towel.
- Place the meat on the very hot pan and sear for about 60 seconds on all side to create a perfect crust all over the meat. Remember, searing should be quick. The meat is already cooked inside.
- Your Strip loin roast is ready to be served! Enjoy it with your favourite sides!
- Make sure the pot is large enough to hold the piece of meat in the bag and Joule (or other sous vide unit), without being crammed. The water should also not be too close to the rim. Make sure to follow your unit's instructions.
- When using Joule by ChefSteps, you can use the app to see the doneness visually.
- Make sure the bag is properly sealed or that the bag opening is kept above the water line. No water can enter the bag!
- The guests are late and you're not ready to sear just yet? No problem... When using Joule by ChefSteps, you can leave the bag in longer because the meat will remain at the same temperature. Simply take it out to sear when ready.
- Because you're cooking sous vide, you do not need to let the meat rest after searing, since the meat was cooked at a lower temperature.