Sous Vide Cooking

General Topics

Addélice mentioned on Twitter technical data about their new thermal immersion circulator

by on Jul.08, 2009, under Equipments & Accessories, General Topics

addelice-onlineshop-sous-vide-cooking-equipment-thermal-immersion-circulator

Addélice twitted yesterday and mentioned some new information about their immersion circulator to be released mid-August.

  • Microprocessor controlled
  • PID temperature control
  • Precision ≤ 0.2ºC
  • heating power 2.000 Watt
  • Timer function
  • Overheating protection and low water level protection
  • Acoustic and optical alert
  • Circulation pump

Addélice mentions on its online shop that their sous vide appliance will be price competitive…

Here a picture taken from their site supposed to represent Addélice immersion circulator…maybe a protection grid?

addelice-thermal-immersion-circulator-sous-vide-cooking-equipment

Jean-François

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Sous vide cooking with a temperature PID controller (SousVideMagic of Fresh Meals Solutions)

by on Jun.12, 2009, under Equipments & Accessories, General Topics

I am now very happy and relieved to jump to the next step of my experimentation consisting in trying all kind of sous vide cookers and accessories. Cooking sous vide with a gas stove, a halogen stove or a basic water bath (bain-marie) was such a pain in the neck! The main advantage of this was the cost of the equipments, close to zero (except for the vacuum machine) but it was really hell to maintain a constant temperature.

Let’s try a PID controller!
But first what is a PID (Proportion, Intregral, Derivative) temperature controller?

The PID temperature controller is the most sophisticated controller available providing exceptional performance at a surprisingly low price. But what is it, really?

Here are 4 articles that should help you understand it!

The first link is the most accessible information I could find about a PID controller. Let’s call it “PID controller explained for dummies”. This fantastic video was made by robot geeks and explains speed PID controller. You just have to replace into your mind speed by temperature! This video is a bit long to download but if you would have to watch one piece of information about the PID controller in your life time I would strongly suggest you to watch this video!

sous-vide-cooking-org-temperature-pid-controller-explained-for-dummies2

This second link is giving a little more information about temperature PID controller (still understandable for an average intelligent brain).

sous-vide-cooking-org-temperature-pid-controller-explained-for-dummies1

Here are 2 links that I would recommend for people who are really interested in tuning PID controllers. In other words, don’t even dare clicking on these links  if your are not a scientist!

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Sous vide cooking with a rice cooker paired with a temperature PID controller.

A rice cooker or other heating appliance will cycle on and off, causing fairly wide temperature fluctuations. To avoid this some people pair a rice cooker with a PID controller. The PID controller has a thermo-sensor that is inserted into the rice cooker water. You set the PID device to a certain temperature, and the PID will control the amount of electricity that activates the heater, thus keeping the water temperature at a constant.

Although other heating appliances can also work, the simple rice cooker seems best suited to work with the PID device for sous vide applications. You must buy a rice cooker that has a basic mechanical on and off switch. Don’t purchase an expensive sophisticated rice cooker, it will probably not work with the temperature PID controller.

What are the temperature PID controllers available on the market for sous vide cooking purposes?

Traceable Temperature Controller

sous-vide-cooking-org-temperature-pid-controller-traceable

Auber Instruments

sous-vide-cooking-org-temperature-pid-controller-auberin-instruments

SousVideMagic 1500B form Fresh Meal Solutions

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I purchased the SousVideMagic 1500B as it seems to be the most popular one. Feedback of people who purchased it is excellent. The cost for this temperature PID controller is USD 169 plus approx. USD 25 shipping costs to Europe (USD 99 if you don’t have the patience to wait, therefore you’ll get it within 3 days with Fedex).
For non North American users an input power cord and an adaptor to the socket of local standard will have to be purchased separately.

sous-vide-cooking-org-temperature-pid-controller-sousvidemagic-fresh-meal-solutions-3

 

To sum up, the global cost for my SousVideMagic temperature PID controller is:

  • SousVideMagic 1500B: USD 169 + USD 25 = USD 194 incl. sending
  • Custom duties: EUR 35
  • Basic rice cooker: EUR 45
  • Input power cord and socket adaptor: approx EUR 16.

Grant total (1 EUR = 1.4 USD): approx. EUR 234 (USD 327)

I sould receive my SousVideMagic tomorrow. I’ll give you my first comments as soon as possible!

Jean-François

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Getting started with Sous Vide Cooking!

by on Apr.29, 2009, under General Topics

In order to start with sous vide cooking I need:

  • gathering information, books, identifying internet sites of interest,
  • a vacuum machine,
  • a digital thermomether,
  • a device that enable controling very precisely the water temperature.

Those last days I worked on the 2 first points. I purchased the Sous Vide cooking book of Viktor Stampfer (Sous vide – Garen im Vakuumvictor_stampfer_sousvidecooking.org- Cooking in a vacuum - Ed. Matthaes) € 68 in a bookshop. It is a lots of money but I think this is worth it to start on good basis. I also read with a lots of attention the excellent “Practical Guide to Sous Vide Cooking” of Douglas Baldwin. I’ll make some summaries of this document later when necessary.I also looked carefully at vacuum machines. There are thousands of trademarks of vacuum machines and it will be totally useless to compare prices (in the range from € 150 to € 2.500 for professional machines!) and specifications. Therefore I asked for a friend of mines’ advice who told me the German LAVA products had excellent reputation. Then I purchased a LA.VA V.100 for €259. I have a trick for you. If you buy this product from the German site you can benefit from a special offer (2 acryl containers that can be vacuumed and 50 vacuum packing bags of 25×40 cm) that represent a discount of approx. € 50. I should receive this machine soon.

vakuumgeraet_v_100_1

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What is the purpose of Sousvidecooking.org?

by on Apr.24, 2009, under General Topics

My name is Jean-François. I am a French student studying economy at University and I had a revelation some weeks ago…

At the occasion of an exceptional family event we went eating at Shea Gallant CRU in NYC. My father offered me the Chef Tasting Menu which was what you would call an unforgettable experience. Among all these dishes I have especially noticed one, a lamb cooked sous vide at low and constant temperature. I have been amazed by the flavour and the tenderness of this meat. I remember having bombarded the waiter with questions.

My cooking talent is not really recognised by my family and friend circle. I admit prefering tasting what the other prepared for me. After gathering information on internet I realised that it was not so difficult to prepare an excellent tender meat cooked sous vide at low temperature. Nevertheless the information available is not abundant and devices available on the market are or very expensive and dedicated to professionals restaurants or closer to the “do it yourself”.

I decided to try all these solutions and determine if what is said on the net by manufacturers is true or not. Finally, the goal of this blog is to help people curious about sous vide cooking at low and constant temperature finding answers and solutions at the right budget.

Should you have any question or theme or products to test, feel free to contact me.

Jean-François

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