By Marilyn Kitzes
If you want to know the secret to a mouthwateringly tender, perfectly seared steak, there’s no one better to ask than Dr. Bruno Goussault, the Chief Scientist at Cuisine Solutions and the pioneering master behind the sous vide method. Below, he takes us through the necessary steps to achieve protein perfection, from the ideal initial sear to the finishing touch before serving. Along the way, learn how the science of the sous vide method helps you deliver a delicious finished product every time.
The Initial Sear
Using a cold steak from the refrigerator (41℉/5℃ or below): First, sear the meat to develop a uniform browning on all sides. Be sure to turn meat every 30 seconds on each side to avoid cooking the center.
The First Chill
Searing the raw meat raises its core temperature, so it must be chilled before you sous-vide. Place the meat in the refrigerator until it hits 41℉/℃ at its core (using a probe is helpful). The time will depend on the size of your portion. This is an important step before vacuum sealing.
If using salt and pepper, adjust your amounts to the weight of your steak. Use approximately 1% salt by the steak’s weight and 0.1% pepper. For any other seasonings, again, you don’t need much. Because no flavor escapes from the pouch, you’ll add about 1/10 of what you normally would. Seal the steak in the bag chilled and seasoned.
Time to Sous Vide
For a medium-rare steak, cook sous vide at 130℉/54℃. For a medium-well result, cook your steak at 141.8F/61℃. Note that a 1 lb. steak will take approximately 10 hours to cook to 141.8℉ (medium-well).
The Second Phase of Chilling
After cooking, let the steak rest for 10 minutes to re-absorb juices. Then, place the bag in cold tap water for 10 minutes, and then ice, to get the steak back to 41℃ in its core.
The Final Touch
Just before serving, sear the meat again to reheat the steak and create a satisfyingly charred texture.
Ground coffee lends richness and flavor to steak during the sous vide process.
The flavor of a perfectly cooked steak is emboldened by a chimichurri sauce and truffle-laced zucchini.
Seared to perfection and then finished slowly, this sous vide lamb shank will become a go-to for future get-togethers.
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.