Now that you’ve received your Sansaire, you may be facing the difficult question of what to cook first. Indeed, your first sous vide dish represents a milestone in your home cooking. To commemorate this occasion, we can’t think of a better food than a perfectly cooked egg.
The Fabled 65ºC Egg
For your first sous vide dish, we highly recommend the simple yet marvelous 65ºC egg. This technique doesn’t require any equipment besides your Sansaire, and truly demonstrates the incredible advantages of sous vide coking. Eggs are composed of sets of proteins that gel in predictable ways at very specific combinations of time and temperature (for a detailed explanation of the time-temperature relationship, see The Kitchen as Laboratory.) However, these gelling reactions are very temperature sensitive: a difference in temperature of only one degree can produce noticeably different results in the final texture of the egg.
For this reason, the precision afforded by sous vide cooking gives control over your eggs in a way that traditional techniques can’t touch. To get started, we recommend holding the cooking time steady at 45 minutes, and varying the cooking temperature until you find the texture that you prefer. Temperatures between 62ºC / 144ºF and 70ºC / 158ºF yield the best results to our taste. However, our favorite egg is at 65ºC.
The video above shows the process from start to finish, using duck eggs cooked to 67ºC. This produces a thick, spreadable texture. For a slightly runnier chicken egg, follow the steps below.
- Attach your Sansaire to a small container, such as a sauce pot, and add water. Set the target temperature to 65ºC / 149ºF and allow the water to preheat until it has reached that temperature – it won’t take long.
- Add your eggs, shell-on, directly into the water – no plastic bag necessary. To avoid the shells cracking, we recommend using a ladle or spoon to gently place your eggs in the pot.
- Cook the eggs for 45 minutes, then run them under cold water for a few seconds to make them easier to handle.
- Crack the eggs directly over toast, a bowl of pasta, or a salad. You’ll notice that the whites are just barely set, while the yolk has thickened to a creamy texture. Add a pinch of flaky salt, and enjoy!
- Duck Eggs – If you think chicken eggs are delicious, try the same approach with duck eggs. We find them even richer and more flavorful!
- Deep Fried Sous Vide Egg Yolk – Crack your eggs carefully into your bare hands. Then, gently run water over the egg to remove the whites, leaving the yolk encased in its delicate membrane. Working very gently, coat the yolks in Japanese bread crumbs and deep fry until just golden brown.
The best resources available for sous vide egg cooking are Modernist Cuisine, and it’s follow-up, Modernist Cuisine at Home, which is available as an app. In particular, take a look at the Breakfast Eggs chapter for a complete reference chart of sous vide egg textures.