skirt steak for my wedding

I have 45 guests for a dinner party for my wedding. A few questions…

  1. I have done skirt several times for about 3 hours at 31 degrees it came out perfect. We don’t even sear it and it was always a hit. I keep seeing mention of people doing it 10-12 hours. Now I am second guessing myself. I guess my question is does it matter?

  2. Dishwasher rack … I see these mentioned all the time, however I do not understand how the food is held in them? It is ok to just place it in them with cloths pins to hold them down.

  3. I have a Styrofoam cooler that I got a bunch of frozen fish shipped to me. Can I use this Styrofoam cooler as a cooking vessel?

  4. does the amount of food in any one vessel change the cooking time?

Grouchchef, that’s a lot of meat, at least 15 pounds and likely a lot more. You may have to cook in several batches to have ample water circulation.

It’s hard to beat “perfect” in this life. If you are satisfied with the 3-hour cook, why change?

Most people prefer the flavour of seared meat to un-seared. Have you done a taste comparison?
Skirt steak from lower grades like “select” will benefit from those longer cook times for tenderness.

I suspect you are referring to an Ikea folding dish rack, or similar, that separates your food packages and ensures adequate water circulation for even cooking. I sometime use an upside down rib rack. Racks usually require something on top to keep your food in place and beneath the cooking water’s surface. Some form of clamp would work as long as they don’t allow the food to float. Sous vide cooking requires total immersion.

Those shipping containers are made of a soft material that will likely need reinforcing to firmly hold your APC’s clamp. You don’t want the cooler to fall apart while you’re cooking in it.
Also, is the cooler deep enough?

In sous vide cooking times are not mass-dependant. Just make the food packages approximately the same size.

All the happiness possible in your marriage.

Thanks for the response…

Ok i have 3 avonas so so can spread it out in vessels.

Also we do 5-6 courses a night kinda of tapas style so for this it will be 2-3 ounces per person. I think I figured 8-10lbs …

I realize sear would be better but it has been fine without when we slice thin and just have as an app or on my boat we now use the avona instead of grill. Ill be cooking 5 other courses that night so searing 10lbs probably just put me behind on other dishes. And honestly Im scared of overcooking.

So when people use those rib racks and dish holders they turn them upside down? Thats the part i was missing. Any reason I cant just attach them under the water to the right side up ribrack or dish rack with the clothes pins?

You could always pre-sear your steak before packaging it to gain some of the flavour benefits of the Maillard reaction.

I’m also guessing that the 31 degrees is just a typo and you mean 131F.

Yes. 131degress if I remember right.

If the entire rack is underwater all you need to do is put a plate on top to keep everything submerged. Meat is not to hard to keep submerged. Vegetables will give you the most problem.

Sous vide became a widely used foodservice technique in Europe in the last century because it successfully, and safely, enabled the separation of the preparation and cooking steps from actual service. (An American example was the menu system chef Jacques Pépin created for Howard Johnson’s in the 1960’s.) Sous vide cooking can provide you with a systematically phased advanced cooking process that reduces operating costs while enhancing your menu item quality.

By cooking 5 other courses that night for your wedding it appears you are not taking advantage of advanced meal preparation opportunities your Anovas provide. Of course sous vide cooking isn’t appropriate for all menu items, but there are probably several ways you can be a lot less busy at your wedding by using advanced cooking techniques.

I like to keep things simple so i use powerful magnets to hold them in place. There’s likely no reason you can’t use clothes pins if you want to. Attach them before gently filling the vessels with hot water.

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