Cod roe sousvide?

I can’t find any information on temperatures for sousvide cod roe. It seems to me as a natural candidate for sousvide, because when boiled it tends to overcook/dry out, whereas when steamed or boiled for a shorter time, it remains moist in the middle, but eneven. I am looking for a sort of ‘medium-rare’ idea, so that I can then quickly sear the sliced roe to make it more attractive/interesting.
Has anybody tried this before? If not I will start experimenting and find out the hard way.

Seems to work for salmon roe:

Never cooked roe that way. When I have cooked it, it was always still in the sack. I’ve always uses brief intense heat. I never tried to cook it as the way through: keeping it blue rare if you will. Let us know what you do and how it turns out.

To be perfectly honest, this is the first time I’ve heard about the idea of cooking fish roe at all. For my whole life, the only way I’ve ever eaten fish roe, wether it be caviar or any other kind, is raw. So, I’m curious as to why I might want to cook roe in the first place. Isn’t it a bit like sushi, where every bit of cooking spoils the fish a bit more?


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In Scandinavia we always cook or fry cod roe. To make it in sousvide: Let the roe stay in their “trousers”. Rinse it in water and salt it gently. Wrap it in plastic foil and then vacuumise it under normal pressure. Sousvide cook it at 80 C/176 F. A big roe (about 400 g/1 pound) should be in the sousvide for 1 hour and 45 minutes. Let it cool in refrigerator until next day. Cut the roe into slices about 1 inch. Carefully take away the rind. Serve it on toast with fresh homemade mayonnaise. Or: turn the cod roe slices in beaten egg and breadcrumb and fry them on the pan i half butter and oil. Serve on toast with a sauce remoulade: mayonnaise with a little lemon juice, fine chopped estragon, parsley, chives etc.

Thanks Peter you got exactly my question right. I guess cod roe is more a Northern European thing and is not well know in the US - it is indeed something completely different from caviar.

As I have in the past cooked whole fish with roe and liked it, I started my experiments with cooking at the same temperature I generally cook cod, ie 55C. 20 minutes were enough for small ones but 40min were needed for bigger ones (400g). The result was very different from the traditional (in the UK) boiled roe: the colour had changed and the inside was very soft and moist, meaning that the slices needed handling with care (and keeping the rind), but they were to my liking, after a quick searing in the pan (heavier searing for those liking a firmer texture). I have to try your 80C version, I understand that higher temperatures will also need longer times but I am a bit surprised by the 1h45, it sounds to me long even for 400g. But I’ll try it.’

Thank you for your answer, Meardi. You do not have to worry about the time. The most important thing is to choose the correct temperature of the water in your sous vide. In Scandinavia people normally prefers cod roe to be well done, and 80C is the correct temperature for that preparation. The preparation time is not that important but it should be long enough to ensure that the target temperature in the centre of the prepared object is equal to the temperature of the water. And cod roe is very compact when vacuumed. Yesterday I prepared cod roe again, this time “a pair of trousers” at the weight of 700g. Again I gave it 80C/1:45, and it was perfect. So perhaps you can prepare a piece of cod roe at 400g in 1 hour. But still it is the target temperature that really counts.

If you like cod roe that is more pink, moist and soft you should perhaps go for at target temperature on 65C/1:45?

Try and take a look at this:

This Danish “expert” recommends preparing the cod roe at 80C/1:00. I just must say, that the centre temperature is not 80C. And I think that the method of this “expert” makes no sense. If he really likes his roe this way, he should find out the correct target centre temperature instead and chose that temperature for the bain-marie. And then cook for 1:45.

In Denmark some of us also like roe from flounders, plaices, turbots etc. You keep the roe in “the trousers”, rinse them in water, salt them lightly and toss them in wheat flour, beaten egg and breadcrumb. Fry on a pan in half butter, half raps seed oil. Delicate and cheap!

Hi Peter. I suppose I’m the “expert”, thanks for pointing to the post re. cod roe. I have changed the recommendation to 85°/1:30 last year from the experiences I got from the seminars I do, but I didn’t update this one until you reminded me, thanks! I actually have a full recipe here
The 85°/1:30 will make it very soft and juicy (especially for large trousers) but I like it that way.