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Jan 29, 2009 07:49 AM

sous vide advice?

I would like to sous vide a 3lb sirlion roast; i tested my crock pot and it maintains a temperature of 130. Is that hot enough? Seems too low; perhaps if I browned afterward I could bring the temp up to 145 while still having it be tender? How long would I have to leave the roast in the pot to get it up to 130? If I used a big pot and a candy thermometer, what time and temp should I use?

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  1. I think this article will help! The recipe itself is attached:

    2 Replies
    1. re: katecm

      Wow. The author is inspiring, courageous and ballsy, especially to have experimented with something so dicey for the first time for guests.

      1. re: chicgail

        I know, isn't it great? His columns are wonderful. But inspiring is right - I imagine a lot of people in the DC area tried this after reading the article.

    2. Plume, You should sear the meat before you vaccum it, this will enhance flavor build. 130 f is a good temp to cook at but it will take a long time, but that is not a bad thing. I have been working on cooking a chuck tender and trying to find the perfect water temp and have found 58-59 celsius works well. I have been cooking the 1.5# roast for 48 hours to make it tender. The meat is has a pink, medium doneness look but is fork tender. Check out a paper by Douglas Baldwin called "A practical guide to Sous-Vide Cooking. If you google it you will find it. Loads of good info and pick up a copy of Thomas Keller's book Under Pressure, very good info. Good Luck.

      1 Reply
      1. re: jscott65

        I'd sear after sous-vide. Otherwise the crust will get all soggy sitting int he bag.

      2. NDP, please be careful and impeccably sanitary if you do this. This is nothing to play with without the proper tools and equipment. Sterilize everything, - think operating room clean.
        Sous vide is a potentially hazardous technique as uses temperatures below the thermal death point of microbes, 138F. This anaerobic technique also permits the possible growth of deadly botulism toxin (kills about 800 Americans a year) as it takes place without oxygen over an extended period of time.

        4 Replies
          1. re: iamafoodie

            800 deaths/year is a gross exaggeration. There are not even 800 cases of botulism/year, there are about 145 cases/year on average, and most are not related to food.

            1. re: jaykayen

              I'm going to agree with you, but I agree that you need to be VERY careful when it comes to sous vide processing and C. bot. The Canadian Stats from 1997 were 18 cases with 1 fatality and most of them were traditionally fermented Inuit food.

              1. re: jaykayen

                I do quite a bit of sous vide cooking and while the potential for botulism is there, it would take a cook time of over three days to achieve.

                As for myself, I use a vacuum sealer and have the appropriate Polyscience equipment to do the job. However, I've been thinking more about how one can achieve the sous vide thing at home without the expensive cooking and wrote about it on my blog:


                Use it as a guideline but you take on the risk.

            2. This is tricky for a professional. You're nuts if you're trying to do this at home.

              1. I've been having a lot of fun playing with sous vide in the crock pot. Here's a website that has a lot of very useful information. Take a look at table 2.3 for cooking times for beef:


                As far as searing goes, if you do it before the bath you get Maillard flavors penetrating the meat, but the crust isn't crispy. So I prefer searing afterward. The only problem I've seen is that the internal temperature rises quickly when searing in a pan, and small things like scallops can end up egregiously overdone. The next time, I'm going to try using a blowtorch.

                1 Reply
                1. re: alanbarnes

                  The website for my guide, "A Practical Guide to Sous Vide Cooking", has moved to