I'm new to sous vide cooking. The equipment I'm using is a Ronson slow cooker connected to Sous Vide Magic PID controller, no bubbler. No vacuum sealer.
I calibrated the SVM temperature reading to boiling water, and it was very close (99.9 oC). I then "auto-tuned" the PID. The end result is that it takes a long time to get up to temperature (/slow/ cooker), but holds it within 0.1 oC once achieved consistently.
For my first experiment I wanted to try Douglas Baldwin's Flat Iron Steak recipe. (12hr @ 55 oC)
I chose three well marbled blade steaks (cheap cut) with a little bit of bone in the centre. Each steak was individually sealed in a zip-lock bag using the water submerge method Doublas Baldwin recommends.
The first day I cooked them for 10 hours (not 12, it was dinner time, and I was impatient :( ). I quickly seared the steak 30 seconds per side in a very hot pan and rested it for 3 minutes before serving. It was very tender and had a beefier flavour than any other steak I can remember. But there were some tougher bits around the sinew, but still edible.
I left the other two pieces in the fridge over night and continued cooking one of them for 10 hours the next day. To my surprise after 20hr total of cooking at 55 oC, this piece felt tougher and more rubbery than the first, and the sinewy bits were distinctly even tougher. Does anyone have an explanation for this?
I know thickness in a slab shaped piece of meat is most crucial in determining cooking time, and each of these steaks was about 15mm thick (so not very thick), so potentially even 10hr was too long?