Sous Vide Salmon – Personal Kitchen Challenge #17

The Modernist Cuisine at Home

The Modernist Cuisine at Home

For Valentine’s Day*, I bought Stephen The Modernist Cuisine at Home.  We’re both fascinated by the techniques used in Modernist Cuisine, and of course the photos are amazing.  The At Home version is about a fifth of the price as the full version, making it quite attractive…

Anyway, I told him to pick out a recipe for me to use for a kitchen challenge, and he picked out the Sous Vide Salmon (even after the whole “I don’t like salmon” from before – go figure!).

For sous vide, you cook the dish in a vacuum sealed bag in a bath of hot water until the internal temperature reaches the target.  You can buy sous vide machines, of course, but it’s a simple enough technique simply using your kitchen sink, which is what I did.

So the first thing you do is vacuum seal salmon and some olive oil into a freezer baggie.  Not having a vacuum sealer, I tried the method suggested in The Modernist Cuisine.  I never realized how easy it actually is to vacuum seal bags without a vacuum sealer.  It’s crazy easy, y’all!  You just submerge the baggie in water until just the zipper is on top, and close the zipper.  Presto – done!  I’ll be doing this all the time now!

Next you fill the kitchen sink with hot water (about 47°C, in this case).  The sink doesn’t really hold the temperature as well as a proper sous vide machine would, so I had to top it off with hot water a couple of times, but it worked well enough.  You submerge the baggies in the water bath for a set time (about 25 minutes, in my case) until the internal fish temperature reaches the right temp.

Modernist Cuisine

Submerge the baggies in the water bath – I clipped them to a baking rack , and set the thermometer in the middle.

After cooking the salmon in the water, I tossed it in a hot pan with butter and spices for half a minute on each side to sear the outside a bit.

Modernist Cuisine

Sous Vide Salmon with a lemon spinach pasta side.

We both really enjoyed the final product.  It was more flavorful than the simple salmon from my previous cooking challenge.  And it’s really quite hard to screw up, because the timing doesn’t have to be quite as exact.

I didn’t want to risk copying the recipe for those of you who don’t want to fork out the money for this awesome book.  However, I found it on their website!  Here’s the link – go try it yourself!

I can’t wait to try making sous vide steak!

*Yes, Valentine’s Day.  I made this months ago, and am just getting around to posting it.  I’ve actually made it several more times since then, and we love it!  Now I preheat the sink by filling it with hot water, then get the water temp to about 50°C.  It will cool a little, but not enough that I need to top off the hot water.  Works great!)

I’m intentionally challenging myself in the kitchen, working with new ingredients, attempting more challenging dishes, and doing it all while grocery shopping in a foreign language.  Read more about my Personal Kitchen Challenge here.

Categories: Food, Personal Kitchen Challenge | Tags: , , , , | 5 Comments

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5 thoughts on “Sous Vide Salmon – Personal Kitchen Challenge #17

  1. This is more awesome than I have words to describe. I was just sulking over not being able to afford an immersion circulator. I never thought to use the sink! I want to try to sous vide so bad. Thank you, thank you for posting this!

  2. anonymous

    What’s preventing you from using a kettle?

    (And yes, the American infatuation with power-consuming machinery to do things that can be easily done without looks a bit weird to the rest of world.)

  3. Very original sous-vide setup, I love it! Have you tried salmon cooked to 43 degrees? I like that even better as the salmon is very buttery.

  4. Pingback: Slow Oven Steak – Personal Kitchen Challenge #18 | Embrace Life. Be Inspired.

  5. Pingback: Adventures in Sous Vide Cooking | Embrace Life. Be Inspired.

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