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Old 06-06-2011, 10:20 AM posted to rec.food.equipment
zydecogary zydecogary is offline
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Default SousVide Cooking

On Sunday, June 5, 2011 7:04:08 PM UTC-4, Kent wrote:

In addition to whatever you pay for the water bath component you have to
have a vacuum sealer for about $150. Each time you cook you have to use a
bag costing about $.60.


Not at all ......

You can use the big vacuum 'FoodSaver' type equipment -- some are expensive [I have one for which I paid about $85], but some other brands only cost as little as $20 [check the Internet - I just did.]

Even FoodSaver has a rechargeable hand vacuum pump that you can use with it's bags with the built in valve that is currently being touted by QVC (K29727) that is $30. [I have one and use it for this purpose.]

Vacuum Sealers are often available at yard sales as people upgrade their units to newer models and sell there own. You can pick up an old Tilia or a Daisy Seal-A-Meal for pennies that can be used for preparing the Sous Vide bags.

You can get the new Vacuum Bags with the 'zip' closing and the built in air valve

Examples:

===Ziploc (SC Johnson) Vacuum Bags - http://www.ziploc.com/Products/Pages...me=Starter_Kit

===FoodSaver Vacuum Bags - http://www.foodsaver.com/Category.aspx?id=c&cid=1185

===Reynolds Handi-Vac Bags - http://www.reynoldspkg.com/reynoldsk...ac/en/home.asp

===Debbi Meyers/Reynolds at HSN - http://kitchen-dining.hsn.com/debbie...ining-_-957814

These bags are REUSABLE. REUSABLE.

With these you can use either the larger machines, the small hand held machines or you can get a $2.50 hand pump sold by Ziploc (SC Johnson) in the grocery store that does an excellent job.

You can ALSO use regular Ziploc or Glad bags driving out the air by using the easy Water Pressure Trick.

From the Internet: "...we vacuum seal the easy and frugal way. Place contents in a Ziploc bag and immerse in a sink full of water, keeping opened end of bag just above the water line. The pressure of the water against the outside of the bag will force out all the air in it. And, voila, it's done. Zip shut and you're good to go!"

This is a pretty good approximation to a bag who's air was extracted by a vacuum machine -- for the purpose of home experimental Sous Vide cooking.

I happen to have a number of types of vacuum devices. A regular FoodSaver device (mainly use for long term freezer storage with roll bags), the aforementioned rechargeable hand vacuum device which I mainly use with the vacuum bags and vacuum containers, an electric vacuum device also made by FoodSaver initially for vacuuming wine bottles to maintain freshness -- but it works great with the vacuum bags using an adapter and also for the FoodSaver vacuum containers. I also have the Reynolds battery hand vacuum device that works with bags. In addition I have two types of cheap hand operated 'pump' air extractors -- the Ziplock and a brand that I don't recall for use with bags.

In the past, I have owned a Tilia (Italian -- the forerunner to the FoodSaver line) vacuum device and a Daisy Seal-A-Meal. I have been using vacuum sealing devices for a long time.

A person getting started with Sous Vide can experiment for only pennies (a simple Ziploc bag, evacuating the air with the above water pressure method) and a beer cooler warm water bath. It is important to find, on the Internet, the appropriate temperature for the water bath for the food you are going to cook (it varies according what you are cooking and the degree of doneness desired) and the MINIMUM time needed for the immersion in the bath (Maximum time is not important as you will not overcook the food.)

Gary Hayman
Maryland
http://bit.ly/GarysInfo