Last month, while at IFBC (International Food Bloggers Conference), I connected with the fine folks at SousVide and sampled some absolutely scrumptious items. Everything was so sensationally prepared! I had some time to talk to them and learn a bit about how to make superbly and evenly cooked foods.
I’d heard of the SousVide system and concept but had never had the chance to use one so, I was interested in learning more about the method and machine beyond the discussions at IFBC. Well… lucky me! I was kindly provided with a machine to play with, so I could create some tantalizing recipes.
Since it’s football season, and I had a hankering for wings, I thought I’d start there. (But, you can make everything from chicken wings to steak in the vacuum sealed pouches, for hands-free cooking. And really, it couldn’t be simpler to operate.) I wanted some flavor for my wings without being overpowering and insanely mouth-burn spicy, so I chose one of my favorite seasonings, Harissa. Harissa is a North African blend of peppers and various spices including, garlic, cumin, caraway and coriander. I love it. It’s a little smoky, not too spicy and super on so many things!
A litte bit more about SousVide cooking (from the SousVide website)
Sous vide (pronounced soo-veed) means “under vacuum” in French, and sous vide cooking is a gourmet culinary technique long used by chefs worldwide. However, this incredible cooking method is now accessible to home cooks through the award-winning, easy-to-use SousVide Supreme® water oven.
The sous vide cooking technique involves cooking food in vacuum-sealed pouches, submerged in a water bath held at a precisely controlled temperature. The end result? Perfectly cooked food.
How the SousVide Supreme Maintains Precise, Even Temperatures
SousVide Supreme’s technology and product design feature a PID-controlled edge-to-edge heating element across the base and a perforated bottom grill to generate thermal convection currents for even temperature distribution.
How it works How the SousVide Supreme Maintains Precise, Even Temperatures
Two physical facts explain how the water temperature in our water oven maintains even temperature throughout without the need for a circulator:
1. Heat travels very quickly through water.
2. Warmer water is lighter than cooler water.
Natural circulation within the water oven is created when:
• the base silicone heating element transmits heat evenly to the water within.
• lighter heated water rises to the top, as cooler water sinks to the bottom, mixing the water.
Through the natural circulation created by the basic physical properties of heat and water, all the water and food in the bath reach the same temperature. The efficient heat transfer capacity of water ensures that no hot spots or cold spots exist once the target temperature is reached.
So…back the wings… I like wings, a lot. I try not to eat them often, as I try to stay away from fried food. But oh, how we like to dig into some insanely crispy wings from time to time! I like my wings naked, always. Why muck them up with breading? I prefer drums, so that’s what I used but flats will of course work, too. What is great about this recipe is that you get crispy on the outside, juicy on the inside chicken wings, without the fryer! The SousVide cooks these Harissa Grilled Wings low and slow, and then the light brush of butter and the grill really crisp them up with layers of flavor.
- 2.5 lbs Chicken Wings (I used all drumsticks from Whole Foods, there were about 25 wings)
- Salt & Pepper
- 1 stick (8 Tablespoons) plus 4 Tablespoons Butter
- Fill the SousVide with water to the fill line and heat to 170.
- Sprinkle the Harissa (as heavy or as light as you'd like), and salt & pepper over the over the chicken wings to season.
- Divide the chicken wings into two SousVide vacuum seal bags and add 2 tablespoons of butter to each bag and seal. Place in preheated SousVide and set the timer for 4 hours.
- When the wings are done, remove them from the bath and let cool enough to handle. (I made mine the day before in the SousVide and then let come to room temperature before I was ready for the grill.)
- Let a stick of butter soften while the wings are cooling. (It should be very soft.) Add 2 tablespoons of Harissa to a bowl, add the butter and mix well.
- Brush the harissa buter mixture onto the wings, on both sides. Set the extra aside to brush on while grilling.If you like your wings super saucy, double this section.
- Grill on each side for about 5 minutes or until well done and crispy.
- Remove wings from grill and serve hot.
- You'll need a SousVide and a Grill to cook the wings.
- If you don't have a SousVide you can season and bake the wings before grilling.
Season the wings liberally on all sides.
Seal the bags in the SousVide vacuum sealer.
Place in the water bath and cover with lid. Set timer for 4 hours.
An hour or so before the timer is set to finish, take butter out to soften.
Mix Harissa and soft butter into a spread and brush over the wings before grilling.
Grill the wings for a few minutes on each side, until crispy.
If you have any of the butter spread left, brush on while the wings are grilling and when they come off the grill.
Serve the Harissa Grilled Wings hot and enjoy!
Check back soon, I’ll be experimenting more and posting some other recipes!
What would you like to cook in a SousVide? Any requests?