BY RACHEL COTHRAN
Ahhh, spring. The sun is out, the air is fresh, and the ground is practically humming from the growth of crisp veggies and ripening fruit. Don’t you wish the days (and the produce) could never end? Enter sous vide. When used to jar, pickle, or infuse, the technique allows you to enjoy your fair-weather favorites well into the chilly months. Using traditional methods to conserve produce can often be a gamble, but sous vide controls the process more consistently—and much more quickly, too.
So while a truly endless summer may not be in the cards—food science can’t work miracles, after all—sous vide can help make the season’s flavors linger longer. Here are three ways to do it.
This method is all about amplifying and enhancing flavors. Oils, infused with fresh spring and summer herbs, serve as a carrier to flavor nirvana—consider using them to sauté, marinate, or drizzle on top of fish or soups.
Key to success: While your infused oil will keep out on the counter, it will last longer stored in the fridge.
Keeps for: A few days up to a few months when stored in the refrigerator, depending on the produce used.
A plastic pouch isn’t the only way to cook sous vide. Jarring involves the same water bath process, but uses a sealable glass canning jar to preserve summer fruits like peaches and strawberries, and veggies like radishes and golden beets. And there’s a bonus: You can cook and serve the result in one lovely container.
Key to success: Before cooking, make sure your jar is sterilized by boiling. After cooking, hold the jar at room temperature for 10 minutes before putting in the refrigerator.
Keeps for: Anywhere from a few days to a few weeks, depending on the produce being used.
Pickling using a vacuum-sealing method provides a near-instant result because of rapid pressure changes. The salty, sugary, vinegary mixture is tangy and delicious—and the acidity keeps food shelf-stable for months.
Key to success: Use a food-grade (BPA-free, phthalate-free) sous-vide pouch or a jar—not a zip-close storage bag, which could break down.
Keeps for: About 3–4 months when kept in the refrigerator.
Enjoy summer’s bounty longer with jarred peaches in a vanilla syrup.
Ramekins add shape to this decadent bread pudding recipe.
Love gluten-free Egg Bites? Try these sous vide egg bites at home.
Dedicated to the Art & Science of Sous Vide
The first publication devoted to the art and science of sous vide cooking, featuring innovative recipes, visual inspiration, expert techniques for cooking sous vide at home, and exclusive interviews with world-class chefs.