Sous Vide Steaks (DIY)

Remember a while back we attended a cooking class and had sous vide octopus and Chicken Saltimbocca? That chef/instructor also commented that this water-bath method was the only way to do steaks to perfection.

So what happens when you take your husband with you to cooking class?

What happens when said husband has a temperature controlled beer brewing pot?

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Time and temperature controlled.

Yep, we are doing a experiment.

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The brew kettle.

Instead of buying a super expensive water circulating device, we improvised.

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The heating element is inside the kettle and the controls keep the water at an even temperature. The Hubs did this all himself.

I used some of my spicy herb salt, rubbed it over the steaks, vacuum sealed them with my seal-a-meal-a-thing, and plopped them into the brew kettle at 135 degrees for 2 hours.   We then removed the steaks and threw them on a hot grill just to get a bit of caramelization.   About 7 minutes per side on a hot slate stone (another experiment).


The Process

Season beef cuts to your liking and seal.   If you don’t have a seal-a-meal-a-thing,  put the meat in  a zip-closure bag.  Remove the air by submerging the bag in water while holding the open end just above the surface (the water forces the air out of the bag). Seal the bag, then lift it out of the water.

Set the brew kettle for the desired temperature.  I realize that not all of you have a spouse who home brews. For other cheaper ways to sous vide without a circulator, click here.  Don’t forget to set a timer.  We did two hours for a strip and a flank steak.

During the last hour of cooking, we started heating up a slate slab on our grill. (We bought a slate tile at Home Depot for this.)

When the steaks were done with their bath, we removed them.

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They didn’t look too appetizing at this point.
IMAG4633 Very appetizing at this point.  This ribeye was dinner.   We saved the flank steak for another meal.


After we removed them from the bags, we slapped them on the hot slate to get some crunchy caramelization.

The results?

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The flank steak was super tender. I only seasoned it with salt and pepper but it picked up some great smoke flavor from the slate cooking.

Good experience but more experimentation is needed.

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We turned it into yummy fajita meat.

Besides offering up his brew kettle, The Hubs did all the research on this process himself.   He found the information on slate cooking from a Bon Appetit article on Eric Ripert.    He found the sous vide DIY information at serious eats.

It is obvious why I love The Hubs so much.   If you still haven’t guessed, here is why.

A.   He will go to cooking classes with me.
B.   He knows who Eric Ripert is.
C.   He is willing to potentially sacrifice an expensive cut of meat if it means he can possibly have a perfect steak.
D.   After the experiment he says with expectation, “Are you going to blog about this?”

The steaks were super tender but a bit well-done.   Next time we will set the brew kettle to 120 degrees for two hours and slap them on the hot slate for 5 minutes.    According to The Hubs, this is going to be our weekend experiment until we get sous vide steaks perfected.



The Hubs got his information on slate cooking and sous vide here:  Eric Ripert’s Slate-Grilled Summer Barbecue Menu and Sous-Vide 101.

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