Cooking sous vide at different temperatures
When cooking sous vide, there will be times when you want to cook things which require different temperatures, such as meat and vegetables or steaks with different levels of ‘doneness’. Professional chefs are likely to have several water baths on the go at once, but this is not practical in domestic kitchens. Yet there is a solution ...
You will need to use the table of recommended cooking times in conjunction with the examples below.
Example 1 –
You want one steak well done and one rare and they are both 25mm thick
- Pre-heat the water bath to 71 degrees
- Cook the one you want to be well done for 1-2 hours (it is now cooked)
- Reduce the temp to 49 degrees - best to do this by taking away some of the hot water and adding cold so that you can get to 49 degrees fairly quickly
- Add the steak that you want to be cooked rare and cook for 1-2 hours (it is now cooked and the well done is still hot but not over cooked).
NB This method is probably only suited for two different types of doneness
Example 2 –
- Pre-heat the water bath to 84 degrees
- Add the potatoes and cook for 1 hour
- Reduce the temp to 63.5 degrees - best to do this by taking away some of the hot water and adding cold so that you can get to 63.5 degrees fairly quickly
- Add the chicken and cook for 1 hour
- Reduce the temperature further to 52 degrees
- Add the tuna and cook for 20 minutes
So long as you start the item which requires the highest temperature and work down, nothing should overcook. However, maximum cooking times should be taken into consideration during the planning stage
The cook-chill method
The cook-chill method is where you cook different types of food separately in advance. As soon as each type of food is cooked, you plunge it into cold water and refrigerate (still in the vacuum bag). When you want to eat, just heat the water to the temperature at which the item with the lowest cooking temperature was cooked. Add all of the food to the bath and heat for about 20 minutes.