Chef Way showing you the sous vide way!

Lawyer by trade, #anovafoodnerd at heart! Waymond Wesley started his journey to delicious meals in 2017. Not to be outdone by a friend who had just purchased an Anova Precision Cooker, Chef Way decided to start his sous vide journey. Present day, Way is throwing down some viral videos on TikTok and Instagram Reels using his Anova, and spreading sous vide love all across the land!

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Making home ferments with the Anova Precision® Vacuum Sealer

How to Lacto Ferment Basically Anything!

  Does the thought of fermenting food confuse you, scare you, or maybe both? C’mon, it’s 2021, fermentation is totally having a moment while a majority of us are looking for new hobbies at home, and it’s an incredibly easy way to bring funky, delicious, umami to any meal – if you have the right equipment.

The right equipment:

  • Vacuum sealer
  • Vacuum sealer bags
  • Non iodized salt
  • Whatever fruit/veg you plan on fermenting
  • Sharp kitchen knife
  • Kitchen scale

So Let’s Talk Ferments!

Lactic acid, or “lacto”, fermentation occurs when you harness the natural power of lactic acid bacteria (present on the skins of fruits, veggies, and even humans) to convert sugars into lactic acid. This results in the familiar sharpish, kinda funky, vinegary, umami-tinged sourness we taste in things like sauerkraut and kimchi. But guess what – you can do it with just about any fruit or vegetable, and today (right now) I’m going to show you just how easy it is. Then, not unlike myself, you’ll inevitably be hooked on the fun and funky hobby of home ferments. Let me start by saying that as much as I’d love to take credit for this super-gratifying and ridiculously easy method of fermentation, I can’t. I’ve dragged this method from Rene Redzepi and David Zilber’s book “The Noma Guide to Fermentation” and I can’t recommend it enough. Armed with that book, an Anova Precision® Vac Sealer, and maybe some mason jars, there’s pretty much nothing you can’t ferment. The world is your kimchi.  

Choosing Your Ferment(s)

Like I said, just about any fruit or veg will do. As per my experience, foods that are higher in sugar content and juicier will tend to ferment a bit quicker than their counterparts, but as a ballpark figure you’re looking at about 4-7 days to lacto ferment just about anything. For this example I’m just doing 2 separate ferments: cherry tomatoes, and a combination of cabbage and persian cucumber to make a simple sauerkraut.  

Step 1: Chop or not

In general, little teensy fruits and veg (blueberries for example) can be left whole, while larger fruits and vegetables will want to be cut down into smaller portions. For the purposes of this batch, I simply halved the cherry tomatoes, and thinly sliced the cabbage/persian cucumbers I’m turning into a kraut. With bigger fruits with pits like plums, peaches, etc, you’ll want half them and pull the pits out before fermenting.  

Step 2: The big weigh in

Here is the most complicated part of the entire process – simply weighing things (in grams.) So, after you’ve chopped your fruits and/or veggies, you’re just going to add salt. How much salt, you ask? 2% of the total weight of your food. This is simply calculated by weighing out your food to be fermented (in grams) and multiplying that number by .02 – the resulting number is how much salt you’ll be adding to said food for fermenting. Add that amount of salt to the fruit of vegetables you’ll be fermenting and toss in bowl or mix by hand inside vac bag to evenly distribute. For example: – I had 315G of tomatoes. 315 x .02 = 6.3, so I add 6.3G of salt to my tomatoes. – I had 435G of cabbage/cucumber. 435 x .02 = 8.7, so I add 8.7G of salt to my kraut mixture.

Step 3: Seal and wait

Just like it says, there’s nothing left to do but seal your ferments up and wait for them to…well, ferment! You’ll want to keep them at room temperature, in the range of about 21°C or 70°F. If your room is slightly warmer or cooler, it shouldn’t be a big deal but will keep in mind that a warmer environment will accelerate the fermentation process and a cooler room will have the opposite (slowing) effect. It’s also a great idea to label your vac-seal bags with the date you sealed them. Most fruits and vegetables will only take about a week to reach the maturity level we’re looking for.  

Step 4: The moment of truth

So how do you know when your ferment has reached our desired levels of fermentation? It will literally let you know, just look for the fully inflated bag. If it’s been right around a week and your bag is completely or almost completely filled with air, congratulations – it’s time to reap the fruits (or vegetables) of your labor.  

Step 5: Enjoy and repeat

I’ve gotta say, while the use case for sauerkraut is pretty straightforward, the tomatoes are my favorite thing to lacto ferment because they pull double duty between the actual tomato halves themselves and the fermented tomato juice that’s produced as a byproduct. The tomato halves are absolute umami flavor bombs for things like pizza, bruschetta salads, etc, while the fermented tomato juice is endlessly useful for adding depth to things like dressings and sauces, or even using it as a solutions to quick pickle other vegetables in!   The thing is, this process is so exciting because it brings so many different flavors out of a wide variety of foods to expose elements we never even knew were there! It’s worth it to experiment around not just with different fruits and vegetables but also with different temperatures for different durations of time, to develop a ferment that is entirely your own.

Sous Vide Skills 101

Our job is making your job in the kitchen easier, and our hardware is just half the battle. Whether you’re a well-seasoned #anovafoodnerd or a brand new user, cooking with an Anova Precision® Cooker or an Anova Precision® Oven, proper knowledge of how to effectively use your tools in the kitchen is key to an effortlessly delicious meal – no matter what you’re cooking. With so many new Anova users joining us since the holiday season, we figured it’d be a great time to share some skills that are just as useful on your first cook as they are on your thousandth. Enjoy! (more…)

Wishing you peace and joy in 2021

2020

Dear #anovafoodnerds,

This year has been a tough one and many are excited for it to be over. There has been inexplicable loss, political turmoil, and grief over missed celebrations, gatherings and our old way of life. We hope that you are safe and healthy, and that you continue to be in the new year.

As with most dark clouds though, there are silver linings. For me, 2020 was tough, but ultimately I’ll remember it as a year of hope. 2020 reinforced my belief in the importance of Anova’s mission and highlighted how awesome our #anovafoodnerd community is. This year also revealed the character of the people on the Anova team. I was inspired by the work they did and I want to highlight some of it for you.

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7 of our Favorite Holiday Sides

Sides, sides, sides…we got ’em all. That’s why we’ve put together a comprehensive list of our all-time favorite side dishes for you to peruse, free of panic. The best part? There’s no reason to choose just one – go nuts, it’s feasting season. With recipes custom made for both the Anova Precision Cookers and the Anova Precision Oven, we’ve got a little something something for everyone. (more…)

9 Anova Holiday Favorites

There may not be a lot of gathering this holiday season, but that doesn’t mean you still can’t cook a holiday meal worth sharing — even if that means leftovers for days! We’ve rounded up some new recipes, and went deep into the library to show off some old favorites. Below, you’ll find sous vide recipes and recipes made for the Anova Precision Oven as well. Away we go… (more…)

Give Back this Holiday Season with the San Francisco-Marin Food Bank

For many, the holiday season is a cherished time to celebrate the end of one year and the beginning of a new one with friends, family and loved ones. While this year has felt especially tough for many of us, the effects of 2020 have left an unprecedented number of individuals struggling to afford rent, utilities, medication or food. Since the start of the pandemic, thousands of more people have joined pantry lines across the country for the first time. That’s why this holiday season, it’s more important than ever to make a difference however you can.

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Fresh, warm, gooey pastries in the Anova Precision® Oven

Whether you prefer warm and gooey, light and flakey, chocolatey or fruity, maybe even à la mode, fresh baked pastries tend to exist on another plane of existence when it comes to their ability to pique the interest of any living thing blessed with even a marginal sense of smell.

Plus, if you have kids, making a batch of cookies or a simple pie is the perfect excuse to get them in the kitchen and building memories that will last a lifetime. The Anova Precision® Oven only adds to the baking experience, allowing you to a keep hawk-like watch on your time and temp while ensuring all the right textures in all the right places – every time.

Ready to bake? We’ve curated a list of our favorite pies, cakes, cookies, galettes and more over on our latest blog post.

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