Your Thanksgiving Helper? The Sous-Vide Machine

The kitchen tool can make preparing the big meal much easier, whether you’re stressing over the turkey or looking for a way to cook and reheat potatoes.

Comments: 127

  1. Please make a sous vide cookbook, Melissa. I love the Instant Pot books and would love something similar with sous vide.

  2. @Laura There are a lot os sous vide cook books, just look on the internet

  3. Hm... turkey is far more risky than chicken for Salmonella. And, while the circulator brings temperature up relatively quickly, the thought of cooking a giant hunk of meat not improbably laden with deadly bacteria at low temp over a long time just doesn't appeal. Frankly, ANY meat raised in the conditions 90%+ of animals we slaughter are subjected to I don't consider fit for consumption. I don't object to other people eating meat per se, but geez, with the health and environmental ramifications, I just don't understand it.

  4. @PtTaken The disconnect with respect to animal and animal products consumption is certainly puzzling.

  5. @Randy : Please explain to us what happens to all of the existing "animal" food stocks, if we stop eating them? Do we let them starve to death, or multiply unchecked and allow them to consume all the plant life on the planet? What is your solution to the status quo of the present? No one has ever mentioned this problem.

  6. @ PtTaken marin county I think that your environmental concerns about raising and eating meat are exaggerated. Edible herbivores eat plants, and human cultivation of some of the herbivorous animal species moves them from being prey of wild carnivores to food of the humans. As to the turkey in general, I like it only when it does not taste like turkey. This is accomplished by baking bejeesus out of it, until it is extra crunchy. To be eaten with Swedish lingonberry preserves.

  7. The description of Ms. Clark's hectic Thanksgiving Day kitchen highlights why the holiday has become so miserable for me. Cooking that should be about joy and thanks has become a fraught performance before the Instagram judges. Adding a sous vide turkey breast and separately roasted skin is not going to help, especially if you are still roasting a turkey too. It will be just another "thing" to do. Any takers for lasagna and a green salad?

  8. @SM We're a small family of three and we don't eat turkey skin or dark meat. So for us the sous vide is the best way to make our meal. We put in a bone-in, skin-on breast in the morning and just before we eat, I pull it out and quickly sear it in a hot cast iron pan. It looks good and I can use the pan for the gravy.

  9. @SM That's my go to Thanksgiving meal and New Year's Day as well. But I do add garlic bread. Love garlic bread. And no plastic involved.

  10. The problem I have with sous-vide is that you have to cook your food in plastic. Does anyone know a plastic-free way to sous-vide?

  11. There are reusable silicone bags you can use to sous vide.

  12. @catlover Yes...its called poaching.

  13. @Julie still, people will throw even the silicone bags away, contributing to landfills.

  14. a whole Sous-Vide universe that I didn't know existed - thanks

  15. Don't you lose all those wonderful Thanksgiving aromas?

  16. @Chris You will have the most incredible jus for prepping the gravy.....the flavors and aromas are captured within the bag (buy the FDA cleared ones -- ) and your guests will be asking for more!

  17. I've been using sous vide for Thanksgiving for years and there's no comparison for the turkey. One year a guest called it "dishwasher turkey" mockingly- but he was real quiet at dinner because he was stuffing his face with that incredible turkey. I cook the legs for 24 hours with fresh sage and thyme, then add the breast for the final 12 hours. You can even cook it ahead a couple of days and just pop it back in to heat up, and finish in the broiler or with a torch to get all that great crispy skin. In fact, I make nearly everything ahead (gravy, mashed potatoes, turkey) and use the sous vide again to heat up day of, then I can just concentrate on vegetables...

  18. @MrsWhit Right: 24 hours; pre-separate the breast and cook for 12 hours. Anything wrong with this picture?

  19. @Harvey Green That separation of the breast from the dark-meat pieces can be done for oven cooking, too. Christopher Kimball recommends it. Sous vide not needed.

  20. I cooked a sous vide steak and I thought it was terrible; chewy and rubbery. Maybe I did something wrong. However, the idea of heating up mashed potatoes with the sous vide interests me. Maybe I'll try that.

  21. @Madeline Conant Steak, like roasts, requires a very long time to cook sous vide. Specifically, the fats don’t render quickly at low temperatures. If your steak comes out rubbery, your solution is either longer cook times or searing the meat to quickly cook the fats. Alternately, I’ve found that a short time in a microwave can be very effective, though you have to be careful with that because too long can turn your steak from medium rare to well done.

  22. @Madeline Conant No you didn't do something wrong. This is a gimmick that is very useful for restaurants that need to have foods sort of cooked in reserve to get their entrees out to a waiting public. Sell the machine to some worthy but unskilled cook and return to real cuisine.

  23. @Madeline Conant You need to leave your meat in the sous-vide longer. I have been using this method of cooking for 3+ years. 24-48+ hours turns beef of a variety of cuts into superb, tender melt-in your mouth fully flavored treat.

  24. "Long, steady heat" is a dangerously misleading explanation of how pasteurization works. The USDA publishes pasteurization charts for turkey, and while it is possible to eliminate all pathogens at that temperature, the internal temperature of the entire portion of poultry needs to remain at 145 for at least 10.5 minutes.

  25. @Francisco s No, the article isn’t “dangerously misleading.” If you’re using sous vide to cook a turkey breast, it’s going to be at 145 for over an hour, not just 10.5 minutes. You’re tripping over your preconceptions of cooking based on how oven roasting works. “Long steady heat” is exactly what sous vide is about, and the article isn’t wrong to say that you get pasteurization at lower temperatures if the time is longer.

  26. @Gus, I'm not sure I'm tripping over any preconceptions. The only way to ascertain internal temperature of a thick protein such as a turkey breast is via a probe. The protein may be in a water bath at 145 degrees F for way longer than the required 10.5 minutes, but that is no guarantee of pasteurization of anything except the very surface of the protein. The 'danger zone' for proliferation of pathogens is the range of 40-140 degrees F. If the center of the turkey breast fails to achieve 145 degrees and stay above it for those 10.5 minutes (shorter times at higher temperatures), then it is unsafe to eat, regardless of the 'long, steady heat' it may have been exposed to.

  27. @Francisco s There are very accurate calculators available for this type of cooking. Alternatively, a probe thermometer can certainly be used.

  28. So this is the latest “must have” kitchen appliance that would end up cluttering an already crowded kitchen with instant pots, air fryers, magic bullets, bread machines, espresso machines, etc., etc. No thanks. That’s the consumer-driven economy. The next gadget that I never knew I needed.

  29. @Dfkinjer We got a sous vide 4 years ago and I swear by this thing. I love it. My husband arrives home at different times every night (can vary up to 3 hours). The sous vide lets me cook steak or chicken or pork without ever overcooking it. When he steps in the door, I take out my sous vide'd meat, pan sear it for some outside texture and it's on the table in under 10 minutes, tasting perfect, no matter how late he is.

  30. @Dfkinjer i totally agree! sous-vide encourages yet another wasteful (and totally trendy) cooking process!! it's irresponsible to promote this wasteful practice.

  31. @Dfkinjer I keep my sous vide cooker in a drawer and the pot is a standard kitchen pot that I usually cook Pasta in

  32. Sous vide, literally 'under vacuum' in French, is the process. You're cooking with an immersion cooker. You don't need an immersion cooker to prepare food with the sous vide method, but maintaining the strict temperature control you need is much easier. If you're talking about a vacuum sealer, it's not actually necessary to cook with an immersion cooker -- plenty of people just use a zipper locking bag and get most of the air out by submersing the bag until it gets near the top, then sealing it. Not quite under vacuum, but close. In fact, I use my immersion cooker to make boiled eggs without the need for a vacuum.

  33. Now we need to place an egg in a PLASTIC bag before cooking? Is it really worth the environmental cost?

  34. @Holly Gold i totally agree! sous-vide encourages yet another wasteful (and totally trendy) cooking process!!

  35. @rebecca the technique has been used in restaurants and other commercial kitchens for decades, it's not exactly the latest trend.

  36. I presear, sous vide, then put under the broiler. I sous vide to 148 because I like that texture better than 140. When held above 145 for more than 15 minutes, virtually all pathogens are eliminated, unlike in roasting, where the internal temp stays low for a very long time and it has to be brought to 165 and it dries out the white meat.

  37. Roasting a whole bird is not that hard. There are lots of guides in good cookbooks. Just follow the directions. I have lots of friends who get out the cookbooks, read the recipes and then pretty much ignore them and wonder why things don't work out so well. The sv enthusiasm seems to me mostly for people who really don't want to or don't know how to cook. The results are so-so, and like all alleged panaceas, don't really work all that well, but meet some sort of minimum level of product. Kind of like the instant pot, which saves some prep time but produces results that are different, and, in my opinion anyway, not as good as more traditional methods of sauteeing, braising, and roasting. And yes, our household has the gear for both of these methods.

  38. @ Harvey Green New Mexico "Roasting a whole bird is not that hard". -- Of course it is not hard. The best, perhaps, is to roast it on a spigot, rotated over an open fire either manually or mechanically. In principle, it is like roasting a whole beef or a wild boar.

  39. @Harvey Green The whole bird, really? Do you mean the remains after the turkey is brutally slaughtered?

  40. @Randy Of course I didn’t mean the bird with its innards intact. But that wasn’t your point was it? Your concern for humane treatment of animals is well-taken. That’s why I support the Humane Farming Association, which among other things advocates for access and documentation of conditions in slaughterhouses.

  41. The turkey looks just awful. Shock white like that. I know the smart set is cooking sooo-vide these fine days, but no thanks.

  42. The browning is usually done after the sous-vide. I've cooked many thick steaks by sous-vide and then seared them in a scorching hot cast iron pan.

  43. So you have to add a second step to achieve what you could in one pan? Sorry, I like (don’t love) my instant pot. I got rid of my air fryer at a yard sale last weekend. Hated the weird taste it imparted to all foods cooked in it. So, no sous vide for me! And what’s all this talk about plastic? Heat up the plastic so all the chemicals leach into the food?

  44. Actually, it’s not for smart cooks. It’s actually for lazy cooks that don’t have the attention span and ability to master classical techniques. This was originally developed for the first class air travel folks. No cook worth their salt uses sous vide for anything other than thwarting labor cost or getting gym time back. Not a sign of dedication to craft.

  45. Wow what a food photographers nightmare, how to make a meal look processed. Besides that sous vide three pound breast @ one pound per hour, as opposed to just following the god of cooking J. Childs pitch perfect method or any of the thousand and one Ytube vids. Let's not forget the price of such a contraption, again go to Ytube for a cheaper method. Not sure why the NYT is pitching product. Please if you must eat turkey for thanksgiving no matter how it turns out (guest and relatives keep their opinions to themselves please) nothing beats the aroma of roasting turkey which speaks to memories past, present and hopefully future tweeks.

  46. @Bush Do you know what it cost to operate a Sous vide heater. Most are 800 watts. Your oven easily uses a more than 4x that rate -

  47. @I Norris Maybe but in the end you get 12 -16lbs of turkey, plus baked yams, plus your pies, plus here in the northeast the convivial warmth of the kitchen. Any which way you look at it gas vs electric vs solar oven you wont end up with a pasty looking dish.

  48. If you’re using sous vide for turkey breast at 145 degrees then you will require a separate sous vide machine for the potatoes which require a much higher temperature (>183) to cook and soften.

  49. The picture of the sliced sous vide turkey breast looks like something out of a school cafeteria.

  50. Here is how to cook turkey. Chuck in oven. Cook till done. Made it about 200 times. Sides? Taters, easy, peas, make your sister make the gravy, can of cranberry sauce. My dinners are much more complex, but people angst too much. Just throw some food on the table. People are not there to post reviews, just maybe drink and eat a lot, and have fun.

  51. No way. Not now. Not ever. Thanksgiving is about tradition - your mother's recipes, especially for the stuffing, which was, of course, her mother's recipes. Sous-vide? On Thanksgiving Day? Seriously? Stop! Just stop. You should be ashamed.

  52. The photo of the sliced breast is unappetizing...I don't care to use this method if that's what the result is.

  53. I can't be the only one who finds those two sliced slabs of "white" meat to be thoroughly and completely unappetizing. Yeah -- ok -- they might taste delicious, but completely devoid of any eye-appeal. Sorry, Melissa. This is a big fail.

  54. @ellen Melissa often fails because of her promotion of animals and animal products.

  55. @Randy Then why would you take the time to read one of her Thanksgiving articles and not expect her to talk about turkey and then take the time to write a comment. She does a great job of introducing a new method to prepare the traditional Thanksgiving meal.

  56. So that's what this gizmo looks like! We'll be a crew of 32 at our house for Thanksgiving this year, with a daughter and boyfriend supplementing the roast turkey I make with "hipster turkey," which, they tell me, is confit legs and sous vide breasts, along with the skin of a whole turkey crisped in the oven. They'll do all but the crisped skin on the back porch, where they'll be in the company of two other cooks grilling Polish sausage, because that's what they do. It will be whiskey and/or bourbon central out there, as all of them are brown liquor fans. We've also ordered a smoked turkey from a local BBQ joint, because the past hosts always smoked one, and we have to try to keep up. It's a good thing we only do this all-family thing every other year. It will be a madhouse, I know, but bring on the Hipster turkey and the for-some-reason-essential Polish sausage, to be served with sauerkraut, no less. I'll be in the kitchen making what I love to make, and drinking wine.

  57. Sounds like a great party. if I weren't already hosting Thanksgiving, I would invite myself.

  58. @Pam Best ingredient sounds like the people, followed by the booze with a wide assortment of foods just a compliment to the good times! Happy for you

  59. For those of us who have declined the “opportunity” to subscribe to NYT recipes collection, and who therefore are excluded from learning about sous vide cooking by preparing one or more of the recipes provided by Ms Clark, might it be possible to include some basic instruction for several foods in the text of future articles on this subject? Or perhaps provide references to sources for guidance that doesn’t require accessing the Times’ data base?

  60. @John Adams Just google Sous vide John Logson has a good wage and so does Anova a maker of Sous Vide Units There Sous Vide units are relatively inexpensive some less the $100.00

  61. YouTube sous vide. All the info you want

  62. @John Adams Logsdon is a great resource, and I also go to -- loads of recipes and cooking times.

  63. I hate to think of the environmental impact of this approach if it means sealing everything you make in heavy single-use plastic every time you use it. Plastic does not decompose when you throw it away. Never.

  64. @Holly Gold I purchase Pork Tenderloin or vacuumed meat products I use the packaging

  65. @Holly Gold Do you drive a car, use heat ?

  66. Ours has been net plastic positive. We try to limit plastic but do use some ziploc bags. The Sous vide was rationale to buy silicone bags, which when they are not being used to Sous vide are great for all the other things we might use a plastic baggie for.

  67. i love things cooked in sous-vide, don't get me wrong, but it encourages over use of plastic/plastic bags.... really, the NYTimes should be promoting sustainable cooking practices, not the latest trends.

  68. I have been a Sous Vide fan for a few years now. Not only do turkey turn out excellent Try Pork Tenderloin that is tender and pink. I sous vide a Pork Tenderloin that I have marinated in the refrigerator for 1 or two days depending on how much of the marinade flavor I want. I rinse off the marinade place it in a ziplock bag (Check google to do this correctly) I usually Sous Vide the pork at 139F for at least 5 hours. The tenderloin comes out firm pink and delicious. I have dome ribs and top sirloin steaks and all turn out great. Just goggle sous vide and you will be amazed how many cooks are doing sous vide

  69. I'd like to try sous vide but not for a tradition fraught meal like Thanksgiving.

  70. @M I like their plan of still roasting a smaller bird and sous vide some extras. That way it still has bits of tradition.

  71. The most amazing sous-vide meal I ever experienced was short ribs, which normally must be braised to well done in order to be tender. These were very tender yet still no more than medium-rare. Btw, most sous-vide cooked meat is quickly browned before serving.

  72. Don't buy one now; there will likely be lots of them available for $5 at tag sales in the spring!

  73. I have been using a sous vide circulator for over 3 years. In fact I have even bought a second one for long cooks (ribs, brisket, short ribs, etc. ). I use my daily driver for steaks, salmon, cauliflower mash, etc. While I do love the science experiment side of the whole experience, the food itself tastes great and it’s almost impossible to mess up an expensive cut of meat. I cook all meats at or above the minimum temperature required for pasteurization. The use of plastic bags does bother me though. Wherever possible I use glass (yogurt, sauces, etc. ). I’d love recommendations for an alternative to plastic bags but for now, I think this I’ll stick with sous vide.

  74. @Shantanu The process of pasturization is a COMBINATION of temperature and TIME. So there is no such thing as "the minimum temperature required for pasturization." You can cook at a lower temp for longer time, or a higher temp for a shorter period, and achieve the same result in terms of eliminating bacteria. That is why sous vide is allowed to exist and meet health codes. There are many tables/charts that give a variety of time/temp combinations that will result in pasturization for a given cut of meat.

  75. @Brian Weiss there is indeed a minimum temperature. If the temp is, say, 36C, you can cook it for a year and nothing will be pasteurized (quite the opposite!).

  76. One of the reasons I love Thanksgiving is because the menu is set by tradition and it’s an easy meal. Sure, you can fuss and brine and stuff butter and sage under the skin if you want to: but a plain roasted turkey nicely seasoned and stuffed with a lemon and parsley tastes just fine. Mashed potatoes are brainless as are green beans or asparagus. Homemade dressing from old bread on the side. The cranberry sauce can easily be made a week ahead of time. Got a vegan joining the meal? Acorn squash stuffed with white beans and vegetables does the trick.

  77. @Elizabeth Molinaro I couldn't agree more. As a vegetarian, all the traditional sides can be made with vegetable stock instead of chicken stock and go perfectly with veggie mains like nut loaf (which can be made days in advance and refrigerated). I think the attraction is no dishes - of course that isn't true if you are environmentally responsible and use the silicone bags instead of disposable plastic ones - and it's a cool new toy that markets itself as a tastier option. People today just gotta have another gizmo or their not hip. Personally, all the fad appliances take up too much space, their poor little motherboards fail in 3 years and the food has an off taste. But then I'm a scratch cook who hates microwaved food as well.

  78. You really have to stop promoting single-use plastic methods like this. How can the newspaper have a whole team reporting about climate change and simultaneously a food writer saying: "Hey! Cook Thanksgiving Dinner in plastic that you throw in the trash and takes a thousand years to decompose or winds up in the sea, strangling porpoises! It's Fantastic!"??? I have another idea for that sous-vide machine sitting quietly on the chair in the corner: melt it down and turn it into something that is environmentally and ethically responsible.

  79. Agree! Never heard of this thing. I was intrigued. But cooking in plastic? Wrong on SO many levels.

  80. The plastic microparticules also migrate into the food

  81. @DT Silicon bags and glass jars work well for us.

  82. Yeah but don’t cook steaks in there. Boiled meat, yuck!

  83. To be fair, sous vide is an excellent method for cooking steaks, particularly expensive cuts that might be ruined by overcooking. My dear departed Aunt Helen had the best of intentions and bought cuts of meat that this Bronx kid never heard of - chateau briand, for example. She might get involved in a phone conversation with an old friend and ruin a piece of meat that cost more than my first paycheck, by broiling it for too long. Sous vide ensures cooking to a preset perfect temperature; it’s not possible to overcook. The meat then needs to be seared to finish. The meat can also sit at that perfect temperature all day until the rest of the meal is ready to serve, and it will not overcook. For some cooks, this is a miracle of technology. Not for me, but it does have its place.

  84. @Sue Sponte You are not boiling the meat...

  85. Yes, let's take one of the easiest things to make, and make it as complicated as possible! Why in the WORLD would I want to be scraping mashed potatoes in and out of plastic bags on Thanksgiving Day? Here's a tip: Boil potatoes. Drain. Add cream, butter, salt and pepper. Mash. Dump into a shallow baking dish. Refrigerate for up to three days. Pour a little milk, cream or chicken stock over the top to moisten. Cover with two layers of heavy-duty foil and stick in a 350 oven for 30-45 minutes. Piping hot, perfect mashed potatoes and all you had to do the day of was turn on the oven.

  86. I am not convinced that the end-all environmental judgement of sous vide should rest on whether or not plastic bags are used. Don't we also want to look at the end-to-end environmental costs of the alternatives? I tend to think that roasting a turkey in an oven uses much more energy than a sous vide immersion. Or frying the turkey outdoors using a propane burner under a pot of oil. And cooking a turkey on an outdoor grill produces oodles of particulate matter. That's all to say that in the complex world that is modern life and all the infrastructure that supports it, "simple" answers are, when well-examined, rarely simple. Oh, and don't forget that there are, when using sous vide, alternatives to plastic bags (reusable silicon)...which have their own energy costs implicit in their cleaning.

  87. @bob Cooking in plastic raises health concerns, too

  88. I bought reusable silicon bags instead of single use because I was afraid of leaching. Easy to rinse out and they can go in the DW. Not my instinct to pull out the sous vide for meat, but I made my best pork tenderloin ever using sous vide and finished it off in a skillet. Since I love Melissa Clark’s simple oven roast turkey recipe, I’ll probably just use the sous vide for French beans at Thanksgiving since I only have a 4 burner stove top. Hard to over cook.

  89. @Zaza C Specifically, leaching phthalates, which are endocrine disruptors, which make plastics pliable. Ms. Clark apparently prefers to stay away from specifics, which seems ethically wrong.

  90. Melissa, I'm a great fan of your recipes but you've come up on the rocks on this one. A year ago I bought a sous vide machine on the recommendation of the Splendid Table radio show. What a pain in the bottom! Among other things, I discovered after it arrived that it would only operate with an app via my cell phone. I spent about 2 hours trying to get it to work and when I finally did the results were totally underwhelming. Who needs the additional aggravation, especially on a holiday meal? Long story short, I sent it back. Incidentally, I feel the same way about self driving cars. When they're on the road with human drivers there'll be bodies everywhere!

  91. @TimG If I gave up on everything after one try I would have never learned to ride a bicycle. Sous vide is another tool in the home cook's tool belt and form some things it is the best and reheating meats and some side dishes is one of them. I have not found a better way to reheat turkey or BBQ than sous vide and for cooking scallops and shrimp it is just fool proof.

  92. @TimG i also mistakenly purchased an app operated immersion circulator and promptly had a disaster with it, and burned my arm because of the hijinks i had to go through to operate it. I traded the stick in for an all in one SousVide supreme, and by the way, i make the best ever Greek Yogurt in it for pennies on the dollar.....

  93. Sous Vide is the way to go. Best texture and taste ever. I have been using my machine for several years. I have searing table outside to get the nice surface burn on the meats. My machine does not use an app on the phone, which is nice.

  94. @Richard Johnston I'm with you! I've done 4 T-Day turkeys and we did a roast off with side by side tastings of roasted/stuffed vs. SousVide. blind testings. SousVide had 13 votes, Roasted 1. Plus if folks use FDA cleared bags they are Phalate free and BSP free. And I highly recommend Searzall for the searing. it's awesome.

  95. Not a fan of single-use plastic bags or wrap either, but there are safe, eco-friendly, reusable alternatives available - 100% silicone storage/freezer/sous vide bags; beeswax-coated sheets to cover storage containers (sorry, 2,000 Year Old Man, but Saran Wrap has seen its day). Knowing that much of the plastic we put in recycle bins is trashed anyway, I'm trying to eliminate single-use plastics from my household as much as possible. I figure it's the least I can do ...

  96. We find that spatchcocking the turkey is a better compromise. Faster cooking than traditional roasting, the white meat is juicy, and you do get the crispy roasted skin. It all depends upon the compromises that you want to make.

  97. Cooking in hot plastic cannot be healthy. Plus, the environmental impact of single-use plastic is something we have to STOP. This method of cooking is ridiculous.

  98. @Christine Destrempes I am a toxicologist, and I am also concerned about cooking in hot plastic. (I have never done so: not in plastic containers in the microwave; not with plastic wrap over food when I’m heating/reheating; certainly not in Ziplocs for sous vide.) We do not know enough about the leachable/extractable by-products from these plastics into our foods when we heat food in plastic.

  99. In the article, was it too challenging to start with an explanation of what sous-vide cooking is and then go on?

  100. Exactly!!! Still don’t know what it is.

  101. @Mike Agree! Where's the video?

  102. @Mike It's a method of cooking invented over 40 years ago. It's been written about extensively in NYT and everywhere else.

  103. Remember slow cookers? George Forman no-fat fryers? Pannini sandwich makers? This device has "fad" written all over it.

  104. Make water hot, submerge ziplock. Nope.

  105. I am wholly ignorant of Sous-Vide machine, Instant Pot, and similar modern apparati. But, as a lover of crispy meat and fish (i.e., well pan-fried, grilled or broiled, baked), I wonder, if the only pork dish, other than ham, that I eat -- Swiss-German Wädli or Eisbein, boiled salty pork haunch -- can be made in one of the aforementioned instruments?

  106. If anyone thinks that pale, boiled turkey looks appetizing, please state your case. I'd much rather see - and taste - a beautifully browned and basted bird.

  107. If you’ve never tried the sous vide method of cooking or tried turkey done sous vide, you really can’t comment with any authority here. It doesn’t boil anything. It cooks meat to the perfect internal temperature and doesn’t need precise timing, adding an extra margin of error on a busy day. While it’s typically done to perfection internally, the outside still needs to be browned. See my post near the top for a regimen worth trying. My family won’t let me cook turkey any other way now.

  108. The closest think that Americans do as bad as politics is cooking . Bad taste, bad philosophy, bad style, fake methodology. Then there is wine, agriculture, and many other fields .

  109. How constructive and eloquently stated. Next time, how about adding your two cents with some substance rather than an unnecessarily mean-spirited remark that has nothing to do with the article.

  110. Hard-learned reminder for any turkey/cooking method: You’re probably going to buy a frozen bird. Don’t wait until Wednesday night to start thawing it! If it’s after midnight and you’re desperate, take a long warm shower with it. v.awkward but it worked.

  111. @A B "If it’s after midnight and you’re desperate, take a long warm shower with it." There are some things you should not share.

  112. This is a fine idea for cooking for a crowd (roast a small bird and augment that with a sous vide turkey breast). Our t-day crowd is quite small (4 adults) so a small bird fits the bill. We do use the sous vide to keep the mashed potatoes warm. It lets us get that dish finished early in the day and then hold it so it needs no attention at the end when we're busy putting the finishing touches on the meal.

  113. Americans think it is smart to pick up a French word that they don't even understand and pretend that they know something very special. Even if they hate or don't know anything about the French culture. Sous vide is sous vide . That's all. it is good for certain things not for all. It is as when I read "goat Brie ". Americans have no idea that Brie is not a cheese. It is a region south of Paris, north of Burgundy. Humid, so the grass is fat as the cows that make the Cheese that bears the name of the region where they are made. But goats ? No. You raise goats in Corsica where there is no grass and they climb on trees to eat the leaves. Not in Brie. Americans are so ignorant to make and call cheese by associating goats and Brie. It is like if you said : we make cheese with the giraffes of California. As you know there are lots of giraffes in California.

  114. Brie is indeed a cheese. It’s a method of cheese making named after its region of origin. Cheddar is also a cheese. It shares its name with its English village of origin. Wherever there are goats (or purchased goat’s milk) and a person willing to make cheese, there can be goat’s milk Brie. Although I am an American, I do not believe in giraffe cheese from California.

  115. @ JPH USA Your comment that "Americans think it is smart to pick up a French word that they don't even understand" is only one facet of the Usans' lack of knowledge of other languages, and world geography and history.

  116. @Greta Emler Sorry . Brie is a region. It is not a way of making cheese. Why do you steal the name ? To make money with another culture . You cannot make and sell Champagne in California. It is illegal. You can label wine " Methode champenoise " but you cannot print Champagne on the label.

  117. That turkey looks terrible!

  118. Lots of sous vide haters here. It's fine NOT to use it, but it really does add a technique some might find useful, particularly those who find it hard to safely prepare meat whose interior is done perfectly. The issue with sous vide plastic bags and potential environmental issues really just reinforces the fact that 7+ billion people are the real environmental catastrophe for the planet. We're also adding some 80 million to our numbers every year. BTW, I'm all for minimizing plastics in our environment and reusing or recycling them as much as possible. But their use does have major advantages for food storage and shipment, especially for their weight and durability. And if plastics are major endocrine disrupters in humans, why haven't our numbers fallen after 50 years of exposure? Not that any of these are good, but for non-human creatures, global warming, ocean acidification, over harvesting, chemical pollution, and habitat destruction are generally far greater threats than plastics. Just saying...

  119. I’ve submitted about sous vide turkey before, but thought I’d do it again.This is just my own experience but some might find it useful. The last 5 years I've done our holiday turkey sous vide by breaking the bird down into its parts. I also debone the thighs and the breasts before brining to facilitate carving after they're fried. I usually brine the turkey parts for 16 hours using a NYT recipe. Through trial and error I've found that white and dark meat need slightly different times and temps (2.5 hrs @ 150 for white, 3 hrs @ 156 for dark with a 16# bird). I next apply a rub but the trick is to then let the meat air dry in the frig overnight. That dries the skin and facilitates a crispy finish. I don't have a favorite rub yet, but it's easy to experiment since the pieces are separate. (This year I may try a flavored mayonnaise coating per the recent NYT rec by Kenji Lopez-Alt.) I use a Krups KJ 7000 home fryer on high (374F) with canola oil. My model will only handle one breast or two medium pieces at a time without cooling the oil too much. Any bird bigger than about 16# and a single breast might not fit in the fryer. (I sometimes have to flip to make sure the browning is even for breasts - not a big deal). As I recall each batch takes about 5-6 minutes which means a little planning to have them all ready when serving time comes. Being cooked to perfection internally, I just need to make sure the exterior is browned to my satisfaction. Carving is then pretty easy.

  120. 12/11/19 update: Tried Kewpie brand Japanese mayonnaise mixed with Trader Joes sriracha sauce (~4:1) with added salt to taste. Applied this somewhat generously to sous vide turkey pieces exposed and dried overnight in the frig. Then deep fried at ~350F for about 5-6 minutes until nicely browned. Taste and browning were significantly improved in my opinion over prior attempts. Lots of room for variations with mayonnaise brands and seasoning.

  121. Hard pass. While I am a bit of a sous vide evangelist, last year I prepared a turkey this way and it was almost inedible: tough, wet, and not particularly tasty. Don't do it!

  122. @Jonas Kaye Bravo. You admit that the metonymy is not worth the value. You can cook "sous vide " if you know what you are doing and for what purpose. Not just because it is an American fad to try to look like you know some French technique when you can't even make des Oeufs meurettes.

  123. I am a huge fan of sous vide, and, particularly of sous vide turkey. However, I wonder why people set up their sous vide in the kitchen? The set up is mobile, why add clutter to the kitchen if you don't have to?

  124. Alison Roman cooks a frozen turkey ! That is worth an article in the NYT. A frozen turkey. That's exciting. Better not follow the rest.

  125. @ JPH USA I think that your criticism is aimed at a general tendency of Food Section writers to go for the least expensive products. I commented more than once about the frequency of the reviews and recipes of chicken dishes, but lack of any other more taste-exciting Galliformes.

  126. I'm a sous vide fan and it's my best friend on Thanksgiving. I use it primarily to warm or keep food warm, so I can pay attention to NOT overcooking the turkey. Make perfect mashed potatoes, bag them, warm them up, and squeeze them into a serving bowl. I put my graving into quart jars to keep it hot. I've even roasted or smoke the turkey early, and used the sous vide to reheat it.I'm a sous vide fan, and it's my best friend on Thanksgiving. I use it primarily to warm or keep food warm, so I can pay attention to NOT overcooking the turkey. Make perfect mashed potatoes, bag them, warm them up, and squeeze them into a serving bowl. I put my graving into quart jars to keep it hot. I've even roasted or smoke the turkey early, and used the sous vide to reheat it.

  127. Used my brand new sous vide circulator last Thanksgiving for an 8 lb turkey breast. Briefly broiled in the oven just before serving to crisp up the skin. I had the MOST relaxing holiday ever and the best turkey. Rave reviews from everyone and tons of delicious meat. Cannot recommend this method more highly!