What is sous vide?
Sous vide is cooking food in a low temperature water bath while your ingredients are under a vacuum seal in a plastic bag. A common misconception is that sous vide involves boiling your ingredients. That is not true. When you cook sous vide, you never reach boiling point (100° C). All sous vide cooking takes place below 100°C. Below this temperature, the best and most favorable chemical reactions in your food occur. This means your food will be delicious and perfect each time.
The basic steps to cooking sous vide are placing your ingredients in an air-tight sealed food-safe plastic bag, heating your water bath to the needed temperature, dropping your sealed ingredients in the bath, and waiting for them to cook to perfection.
Then you enjoy.
Can I cook my favorite recipe with Nomiku?
You don't need to throw out your Grandma's favorite recipes to cook with Nomiku. Here's a foolproof way to convert a traditional cooking approach to a low temperature one:
- Prepare meat before cooking in the same way as traditional recipe. If there is a marinade, do the marinade in the same way. If there is a sear before a long cook, you should do the sear. If onions are caramelized before being used, they should be cooked. If there is a dry rub, apply that to the meat. However, hold off on salt and acid, as that can dry out or cook the food.
- If there is a braising liquid, use about 1/4 cup per 1 quart bag.
- Use bagsoakeat.com to find the time and temperature for cooking your particular cut of meat.
- Add meat to the bags and cook at the suggested temperature for the suggested time
- After cooking, remove the meat (carefully, it may be very tender) and reserve any liquids left in the bag.
- Add the bag liquids to a small sauce pot and add any additional seasonings to make the sauce (for example, salt or acid or finishing herbs). Reduce over high heat until the desired sauce consistency is achieved.
- Sear the meat for 30 seconds on each side. Then plate and add sauce.
How do I know if I need the 120V or the 240V Nomiku?
Great question! In general, the 120V version of Nomiku is compatible with United States and Canadian residents. The 240V version is generally compatible with international residents. Note that this is just a general rule of thumb; be sure to check the voltage system on which you'd be operating your Nomiku to make sure, as some countries outside the US and Canada have regions that operate on a 120V system, such as Japan and areas of Brazil.
You may also find this link to be helpful in figuring out what Nomiku you need.
Please also note that we plan to ship international orders via a UK location to help alleviate tax and custom fees.
What can I cook sous vide?
You can sous vide almost anything!
Proteins like beef, fish, and eggs do especially well when cooked sous vide, but most ingredients in your culinary repertoire can be cooked to perfection using sous vide. There are some things to avoid, however, like leafy green vegetables and pastas. Sous vide is also not substitute for baking, so you're not going to being pulling any perfectly baked cakes or cookies out of your waterbath.
How can I cut-down on Nomiku's energy use?
Nomiku is a powerful appliance, but there are some great ways to decrease how much energy it has to use to heat your water bath.
For example, cut a hole in the lid of a food storage container or cooler that can fit the shaft of Nomiku. You can use the container as the water bath vessel. Close the lid and insert the Nomiku in the hole.
The closed lid allows for better heat retention and stifles evaporation, which can also eat more energy.
Please be safe when creating your custom lid! We recommend using a coping saw to cut through thinner plastic lids and then using a Stanley or crafting knife to smooth away rough edges left behind from sawing. For thicker lids and tougher material, we recommend going to a local professional who can use a scroll saw and more safely create your lid for you. If you're unsure of how to do it, please seek out a professional!
See the picture below:
Do I need a vacuum sealer?
While it is ideal to use a vacuum sealer with sous vide cooking, it is not your only option. Please see this topic discussed in this Cooking Issues post:
In short, if you don’t have a vacuum sealer, you can use the barometric pressure from the water to give your food a great seal like in the pictures above. We here at Nomiku use this method regularly.
What kind of vessel should I use with Nomiku?
A pot you already own with a height of at least 8" inches can make a perfectly good water bath for your Nomiku. However, if you're in the market for a dedicated vessel, this container from Cambro is Nom-approved.
In general, we recommend 12 quart containers that are made from polycarbonate, PC and NOT from polypropylene, PP. Containers made from PP are only good for storage and not for hot liquids.
If you'd like to go with a non-plastic vessel, this ceramic crock is a great option.
My Nomiku dial is not turning
To keep Nomiku's body water resistant, the sensor placed in the green knob that is responsible for temperature change is infrared and will not function correctly in direct light, so if your Nomiku's dial does not seem to be changing the temperature correctly (or the temperature shifts by itself), try taking it out of direct light. Please note that this also includes any other bright lights that may be directed at your Nomiku's green knob like the light from your kitchen stove's hood. If it still doesn't seem to function properly, please shoot us an email at Info@Nomiku.com.
I’m new to sous vide cooking. Where can I go to find recipes?
Glad you asked! We've been long-time sous vide fans and have posted our favorite recipes on our site Bag Soak Eat, where you can find other new recipes, share ideas, and see what other sous vide lovers are cooking up!
How accurately does Nomiku heat the water?
Nomiku comes outfitted with a one-of-a-kind heating element and can heat water within 0.2° C of the temperature you set it to. For example, if Nomiku is set to 80°C, the water will be at 79.8°C or 80.2°C.
Is it safe to cook in plastic?
This is a common and understandable concern.
Modern food safe plastic bags are plasticizer-free and will not release harmful chemicals into your food while it is being cooked. Strong vacuum-sealable bags that are often used in the food industry are especially safe for sous vide. When cooking sous vide, the plastic that touches your food is made of polyethylene and has no plasticizers or estrogen-like compounds (another common concern when cooking with plastic) and thereby have no BPAs or phthalates that will leech into your food.
When looking for a bag to use, make sure they are food safe well over 100°C (even though in sous vide cooking you will rarely go above 70°C) and are NOT organic, plant-based, or reusable--even though we encourage you to do Mother Nature a solid and recycle any food safe bags you do choose to use.
Also make sure your bag does not have the “sliding” closure, instead, opt for the traditional double seal that you can feel and hear the "click-click-click" of. It'll ensure no water gets into your ingredients. It's like sous vide music to the ears.
How do I clean Nomiku?
Nomiku is not safe for dishwasher use.
Instead, after you've finished using Nomiku, let it cool down (don't want you to get hurt!). Clip Nomiku onto a pot and fill it with water up to the “Max” level indicated on the device.
Next set the temperature on Nomiku to 65°C and add a ½ tablespoon of non-foaming dishwashing liquid for every gallon of water used.
After 65°C is reached on Nomiku, allow the water to circulate for ten minutes. After the 10 minutes, turn off Nomiku, rinse its bottom with cool water, carefully dry, and store.
If there is some build-up in your Nomiku after repeated use and you need to descale -- which may occur in places with hard water -- you can follow the directions above, but instead set Nomiku to 80°C and use a ¼ cup citric acid powder for every gallon of water used and allow Nomiku to circulate for 30 minutes after 80°C is reached.
How much water can Nomiku heat?
Nomiku can heat up to five gallons of water. We recommend using a container that is 10 inches tall. Stock or soup pots are ideal. Dutch ovens are typically too short.
Can Nomiku heat things besides water?
No. Right now, the Nomiku can only heat water... and hearts.
Warning symbols are on the screen and won't go away!
If you find that the warning symbols on your screen won't go away no matter how many times you turn your Nomiku on and off, it may be because you had originally shut Nomiku off improperly (like unplugging it from the outlet).
The proper way to shut off Nomiku is to hold the screen for about three seconds until it shuts down, then unplug it from the wall.
To remedy warning icons that won't disappear, simply shut your Nomiku off properly then plug it back in and turn it on--they should be gone now :)
Help! There's something wrong with my Nomiku!
Your Nomiku comes with a one-year manufacturer's warranty, so if your Nomiku is malfunctioning due to a manufacturing error, shoot us an email at Info@Nomiku.com to let us know and we will get back to you quickly with how to proceed. We apologize for any trouble it may have caused you and any delays in delicious food reaching your mouth.
Unfortunately, if your Nomiku isn't working because you dropped it, misused it, or in any way caused damages to it yourself, Nomiku can help you troubleshoot, but cannot replace it or fix it without a fee.
I have a question, want to send you love letters, or just want to say hi!
Thank you so much for checking us out. If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, or if you just want to reach out to say hello, we'd love to hear from you. Shoot us an email at Info@Nomiku.com and you'll get some Nom love back from us lickety-split!
Can I get botulism?
If you heat proteins up to 55°C (131°F) in four hours, you can avoid botulism dangers.
Botulism can become an issue if you commit some sous vide no-nos. While botulism occurs in an anarobic environment like in a vacuum seal, pasteurization is a combination of both time AND temperature. If you make sure that you're cooking at or above the temperature listed above and sous vide for an appropriate amount of time (you'll be sous viding for at least a few hours on most recipes anyways), those pesky bacteria will not get a chance to grow.
Improper storage can also cause your food to become contaminated, so if you plan on keeping your yummy sous vide treat after you're done cooking it, make sure you cool it down in ice bath and then either freeze it or store it in the fridge. If you sous vide something, let it cool, and store it at room temperature, you run the risk of contaminating your food with botulism. A good general rule of thumb for storage is to put your food into an ice water bath after it has been cooked, store it in the fridge or freeze, and then reheat it when you're ready in the recipe dictated temperature waterbath.
Nomiku also comes equipped with warning icons that will light-up on its touch screen. If you are cooking your food within the FDA-assigned danger zone, where there may be harmful bacteria growth the Nomiku display numbers will turn yellow.
What does Nomiku mean?
"Nomiku" is a shortening of the Japanese “Nomikui” (飲み食い) which means “eating and drinking”. Pretty appropriate, no?