The term, “sous vide”, literally translates to “under vacuum” in French. This cooking method requires sealing food in special airtight plastic bags and submerging them in a water oven. Foods cooked this way are known to lock in food juices and flavours as well as preserve their nutritional qualities.
Thanks to its accurate temperature control, what you get are consistently great tasting meals! If you are a busy professional who craves home cooked meals but dreads the hassle of having to check in every now and then on your cooking, consider investing in a sous vide appliance. All you need is some time for food preparation and just leave the cooking to your capable digital assistant!
Here are some points to consider:
1) Water oven capacity
Factors such as the power of the device, its size and water pump to circulate the water in the oven to ensure even heat distribution will determine the required capacity that suits your needs.
A 10-litre digital water oven such as the SousVide Supreme, which takes up minimal space in the kitchen, will likely be sufficient for domestic use. Do note that you would need to cater for space between food pouches to allow the water to circulate properly. Ideally, only about half of the water oven’s total capacity should be filled with food pouches.
2) Temperature stability matters
In conventional cooking, temperatures can rise up to 200°C which means a risk of over-cooking on the outside whilst still having a raw centre. The sous vide method, on the other hand, allows precise temperatures to be maintained throughout the entire cooking process, which translates into delicious meals at all times.
3) Water oven container
Certain recipes require a long cooking time beyond 18 hours. Sous vide water ovens are perfect for such situations. Water oven containers for sous vide generally have superior insulation to save energy and a lid that minimizes water evaporation which is significant when using the machine for a long period. Other sous vide devices such as immersion circulators however are not insulated and have no lid that can accommodate the equipment in the pot.
4) Equipment Size
A typical all-in-one sous vide system tends to be bulky but there are compact versions like the 8.7L SousVide Supreme Demi, which is only slightly bigger than an average oven toaster. Depending on your kitchen countertop size, choosing a machine that takes up too much space might bring about more hindrance than convenience.
5) Key safety features
It is important that the food pouches are completely submerged in water during the cooking process. With long cooking durations, water evaporation can compromise the quality of your food. Do check the safety features before purchasing your new kitchen gadget. Some machines come with lids that reduce evaporation while others measure water level and trigger an alarm or shuts down automatically when the water level dips below the minimum level. Another crucial safety feature will be overheating protection and temperature control, now standard on most all-in-one systems.
The award-winning SousVide Supreme is the world’s first water oven designed to make the gourmet sous vide cooking technique easy and affordable. Sous vide cooking locks in the juices and flavor and preserves the nutritional quality of the food. The result is incomparable taste and texture: steak perfectly cooked edge-to-edge, vibrant vegetables, juicy tender chicken breasts, and ribs with the meat literally falling off the bone. All at the push of a button.