'Modernist Cuisine' authors launch free online cooking school
  • Thought some of you might be interested in this. It's called Chefsteps and if you click on Chefsteps in the article you can preview the first class and sign up with your email to be notified when the classes start.
  • Very interesting! It would be fun to have a group of us "take" these classes and comment. But can you do the sous vide without a special machine? I suppose I could bring a waterbath home from work, but....
  • I thought the cooking school sounded interesting too but don't have a sous vide machine and don't know if you can do that type cooking without one either. I was hoping some of the other lessons might be more useful for the home cook.
  • Check this out - a sous vide machine made out of a beer cooler! On serious eats.
  • There has been a very similar article in the UK Guardian for some time. A most ingenious way to avoid spending vast sums on yet another gadget. (Two gadgets, actually, if you count the vacuum-sealing device.) You do need a digital thermometer, of course, but they don't cost very much.
  • Thanks QS. I usually read Serious but missed that one.
  • Very interesting! I vaguely considered doing a sous vide machine - I saw a slow-cooker version you could hack together here that looked interesting - http://lifehacker.com/5679360/hack-a-slow-cooker-into-a-temperature+controlled-sous-vide-rig

    Though I'd have to do it fairly regularly to justify yet another kitchen gadget...
  • I'm trying to figure out how to "borrow" my Haake circulating water bath. It has only been used a few times for research, no nasty chemicals, and has water temperature accuracy +/- 0.1 ˚C. It would be a perfect sous vide -- but maybe I just need to do my cooking in lab! This whole concept certainly has me intrigued.
  • Have you read Blumenthal's account of the trouble he had with the scientific equipment suppliers when he was developing the technique? Very disobliging they were apparently. It's in that great big enormous book of his.

  • How interesting! I actually know very little about sous vide - just the general buzz and general idea. I'd think the suppliers would have jumped at the thought of placing their circulating water baths in kitchens.
    Cookbookers (and Bunyip in particular), have you tried sous vide? I don't find any reviews when I search "sous vide" in recipe names or cookbooks. And no "sous vide" tags!
  • No, I haven't tried it. However, it's all the go round here. We have a (wildly popular) TV show "Master Chef", where amateur cooks compete to cook - against ridiculous deadlines and often in contrived situations - dishes that would challenge trained chefs. Indeed, sometimes they compete against chefs, who usually win.

    Anyway, this show is used, not surprisingly, to promote products both edible and attached to power cords. Last season we started to see sous vide equipment and also the Thermomix, which of course are available for purchase if you care to pawn the family silver to pay for them. Somebody's buying the things.

    As to Blumenthal's experience, it was something like 10 or 15 years ago. They weren't interested in this lunatic who wanted to obtain one of their machines for use in (horrors!) a kitchen. Later, when the technique caught on and they realised there was money to be made, it was a different story.

    Have you tried googling sous vide, or checking Wikipedia? I haven't but I might try now and see what turns up.
  • There are no reviews of sous vide books or recipes yet on Cookbooker - it's still very much a niche. Thomas Keller does have a book about it, owned by 8 cookbookers: http://www.cookbooker.com/title/2484/under-pressure-cooking-sous-vide - but no reviews. I have a feeling it's something that few home cooks would be able to do on a regular basis, though it is intriguing...
  • There are now videos up on chefsteps -- http://www.chefsteps.com/ -- and you can preview the lessons.

    My advice - don't do it on an empty stomach. The videos are well executed (as you'd expect based on the photography in modernist cuisine).

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