Know Your Thermomix: Thermomix as a Water Bath

Start with properly packed foods sous vide or under vacuum. Here I'm using venison shoulder steaks

Start with properly packed foods sous vide or under vacuum. Here I’m using venison shoulder steaks

We already know that our trusty Thermomix has an amazing number of functions. With just one blade, one Thermomix can steam, knead, weigh, whisk, crush, sauté, grind, grate, cook, mill, stir, mix, whip, chop, blend, purée, mince, crumb, simmer, emulsify and liquidise. Thermomix replaces about a dozen different appliances in your kitchen – domestic or professional – and declutters your worktops.

But now, thanks to a method developed by Chris Horridge of Alan Murchison’s 10 in 8 Group, Thermomix can even function as a water bath to gently and evenly cook meats, fish and vegetables to a perfect degree of doneness and an amazing texture.

So if you’ve already got a Thermomix you don’t need to fork out an additional £200 – £1,000 or more because you can use your Thermomix as a water bath and that is brilliant news. And if you don’t yet have a Thermomix, the money you spend will get you one single appliance that can function as a water bath, a slow cooker, a blender, a food processor, a stick blender, a chopper, a sauté pan, a whisk, a set of scales, and much more!

I am delighted to document here the Thermomix Water Bath method developed by Chris Horridge and originally unveiled at a Thermomix Master Class held in 2011 at The Fine Dining Academy. It’s so simple, I had to read and re-read my notes to believe it. And ThermoHubby John and I were absolutely delighted with the results at dinner this evening!

Using Thermomix as a Water Bath is as Simple as 1, 2, 3

Chris Horridge’s Thermomix Water Bath Method

  1. Fill your Thermomix bowl with 2 litres of water and insert the internal steamer basket. Warm the water to 60° C by setting your Thermomix to 60° C/10 minutes/Speed 2. This temperature is generally considered too “hot” but the water will cool down slightly when we add the item we want to cook.
  2. Place your sous-vide packaged food into the internal steamer basket and cook 50° C/25 minutes/Speed 2. This amount of cooking time will gently cook your ingredients to a perfect Rare but you can increase the cooking time to achieve enhanced texture effects.
  3. Remove your food from the Thermomix water bath and colour in a hot pan. Rest/keep warm while you prepare a silky smooth purée and a sauce in your Thermomix. Enjoy the tenderness, texture, and perfectly even doneness of your food.
Fill your Thermomix bowl with 2 litres of water

Fill your Thermomix bowl with 2 litres of water

Insert the internal steamer basket and heat the water to 60 degrees C

Insert the internal steamer basket and heat the water to 60 degrees C

Heat water to 60 degrees C

Heat water to 60 degrees C

Once water has reached 60 degrees C, put food into internal steamer basket and cook 50 degrees C/25 minutes/Speed 2

Once water has reached 60 degrees C, put food into internal steamer basket and cook 50 degrees C/25 minutes/Speed 2. Here I am steaming two shoulder steaks of venison, packed sous vide by the supermarket in the same bag

I was able to hold my venison for an hour at 50 degrees without hindering the perfect doneness, tenderness and texture of the meat

After cooking for 25 minutes, I was able to hold my venison for an hour at 50 degrees without hindering the perfect doneness, tenderness and texture of the meat

My venison as it came out of the packaging after about 90 minutes in my Thermomix water bath: a perfect rare

My venison as it came out of the packaging after about 90 minutes in my Thermomix water bath: it needs colour but it’s a perfect rare

Sear your meat in a hot fry pan to give it colour

Sear your meat in a hot fry pan to give it colour

My venison cooked in the Thermomix water bath was evenly done to a perfect rare

My venison cooked in the Thermomix water bath was evenly done to a perfect rare, was superbly tender and had brilliant texture

In addition to all its other functions and to all the appliances it replaces, my trusty Thermomix also functions as a water bath

In addition to all its other functions and to all the appliances it replaces, my trusty Thermomix also functions as a water bath to produce perfectly cooked, evenly done, tender meats

I searched the internet for a proper definition of water bath or sous vide cooking and found pages and pages of more or less scientific definitions and requirements in terms of time and temperature but Chris’ Thermomix water bath method is much, much simpler and it works a treat. Try it and let me know your thoughts. I think you’ll be suitably impressed at what your trusty Thermomix can do.

Bon appétit !

Please practise safe food handling and ensure that you avoid serving food at temperatures between 5°C and 63°C, the range known as the danger zone.

 

32 Comments

  1. Suze Fischer

    15 February 2017 at 01:23

    Thank you ! And if i try the no basket and reverse blade speed, I’ll let you know 🙂

  2. Madame Thermomix

    12 February 2017 at 18:54

    Hi Suze, thanks for reading Why is There Air and for taking the time to comment. I believe that my venison was -just- completely submerged in the internal steamer basket, but I can’t remember the weight. You’re right, you cannot fit large cuts of meat or fish into the simmering basket so you are a tad limited, I’d say to 4 smallish portions. Even if the very top of your food isn’t submerged when you put on the lid, when the Thermomix is whirring away at Speed 2 the water will just cover it. As for over filling the Thermomix, the TM31 will take 2 litres of water before blending at high speeds so I wouldn’t worry much about a full bowl at Speed 2. Correspondingly, the TM5 will take 2.2 litres and your food should be just covered and superbly slow cooked.

    As far as no basket and reverse blade speed spoon… I haven’t tried that myself yet, but I do have my own vacuum bags and sealer now so maybe I’ll water bath something for Valentine’s Day and let you know. Until then, I’ll post your question on Facebook and see if we get any replies.
    https://www.facebook.com/Why-is-There-Air-137609556277263/

  3. Suze Fischer

    11 February 2017 at 22:20

    Hi there and thanks for the recipe ! It looks to me like your venison is not completely submerged. Did you completely submerge it ? I have wanted to try sous vide in my thermomix, but it seems you need to use fairly small cuts of meat to fit into the steaming basket. I did try it, but with chicken strips that I cut small enough to fit into 2 separate small bags. I was also a little concerned with overfilling the thermomix in order to totally submerge my meat. So…do you have any tips or comments on any of this ? It doesn’t look like your venison is a small cut of meat. I was wondering if anyone had tried it without the steaming basket, on reverse with the lowest stir setting(spoon), in order to have more room. Thanks in advance for any tips !

  4. Madame Thermomix

    23 May 2016 at 22:12

    Muchas gracias ! I look forward to reading your good recipes in Spanish on http://www.thermomixypunto.com/ !
    Happy Thermomix cooking!

  5. recetas thermomix

    23 May 2016 at 22:02

    Wonderful article! We are linking to this great article on our website.

    Keep up the good writing.

  6. Sous vide cooking with Thermomix TM5 and TM31

    1 October 2015 at 22:09

    […] Know your Thermomix: Thermomix as a Water Bath by Jane Etherton (Why is There Air) […]

  7. Madame Thermomix

    2 August 2014 at 22:04

    Hi Lynda, thanks so much for your comment. I just love the fact that you can do so many things in your Thermomix, including cooking sous vide and using Thermomix as a water bath. The list of appliances Thermomix replaces just goes on and on, doesn’t it? And if you can get your hands on a vacuum food sealer unit for such a reasonable price, you’ve got yourself a fabulous pair of tools and an infinite variety of meals!

    Happy Thermomix cooking!

  8. Lynda, Domestic Godess

    1 August 2014 at 04:11

    Thanks for all the great info on sous vide methods with Theromix. The price of a vacuum food sealer unit is very small – under AUD $100 here in Aus. Works well for me as a food preserver for the freezer / fridge and also does the sous vide thing beautifully. Duck breasts, brains, sweetbreads, leeks, carrots, beetroot, asparagus, salmon – all turn out beautifully. Bon Apetitto !

  9. Cecilia Soto

    11 August 2013 at 15:17

    I’ve been using my TMX to cook “perfect eggs” that I ate the first time at Alex Atala’s DOM, in São Paulo: 60 min at 60 centigrade, using exactly the same method sous-vide that you suggest, maravilloso! I stumbled upon your wonderful blog visiting another favorite: Superkitchenmachine, from ThermomixBlogguer Helene. Saludos desde Mexico

  10. Madame Thermomix

    5 June 2013 at 09:18

    Thanks for your comment, Fiona. And thanks for using your imagination in your Thermomix cooking! Good luck with all the other things you can try to cook sous vide. Please come back and tell us about your next successes!

  11. Fiona B

    5 June 2013 at 07:57

    I have done steak & small lamb racks sous vide. They are amazing. Works really well, same concept for the 60 degree eggs. You are only limited by your imagination. If you don’t succeed, try again. I had a couple of attempts before I got it right, and that was partly to do with the fact that water got into my meat. Was still edible though.

  12. Madame Thermomix

    1 June 2013 at 17:44

    Thanks for this interesting comment and procedure, Big Timmy! My only remark would be to make sure that you use good quality zip lock bags with a double zip mechanism – otherwise the water seeps in through the closure and you end up with soggy meat 🙁
    Thanks for reading Why Is There Air and happy Thermomix cooking!

  13. Big Timmy

    1 June 2013 at 11:44

    If you happen not to have a cryovac machine, you can achieve a similar result by putting the meat in a ziplock bag and expelling the air by lowering it carefully into water with the bag nearly fully zipped so that the air can escape. Then when the water has pushed out almost all of the air, you can finish zipping up the highest corner of the bag.

  14. Flavours of France and the Mediterranean « Why is There Air?

    14 April 2013 at 19:11

    […] steaming bags so you can add the flavouring elements at the same time. We use Thermomix as a water bath to cook the lamb and its aromatic elements sous vide, then we quickly knock up a red pepper coulis […]

  15. Madame Thermomix

    2 April 2013 at 08:28

    Hi Bianca, it’s amazing that you read my Thermomix as a water bath post yesterday because I am working on another water bath post right now – watch this space!

    To answer your question, yes you need to have your fish (or meat or poultry or even vegetables) sealed in a sous vide/vacuum bag before cooking in your Thermomix water bath. Cling film will not keep the water out and you’ll end up with tasteless, soggy food 🙁

    I do not have a vacuum packaging machine at home but I have just had good luck with Ziploc’s Zip’n Steam bags. They are food safe and have a good seal on them, but as with all domestic plastic bags somehow some water seeps in but this was minor and did not effect my food. I was able to pack up my meat along with loads of aromatics to make a super tasty treat in my Thermomix water bath. Watch this space for my next post and thanks for reading Why Is There Air!

  16. Bianca

    2 April 2013 at 02:06

    Hi,
    I just went to a restaurant and had the most delicious salmon that was cooked sous vide so will definitely try this! Was just wondering… after I buy it from a fish shop, would I need to then get it vacuum sealed or could I just wrap it in cling wrap before cooking?
    Many thanks for your post.

  17. Madame Thermomix

    13 July 2012 at 15:20

    That’s great to hear, Mark! Nearly every day I learn something new that my Thermomix can do. Let me know what you cook next in your Thermomix water bath!

  18. Mark Greenaway

    13 July 2012 at 04:18

    I have been reading Chapter 9 in Volume 2 of Modernist Cuisine which is 88 pages on Sous Vide and I am inspired to use my Thermy to Sous Vide just about everything. I have only tried steak and Duck so far. Both were good.

  19. Madame Thermomix

    13 March 2012 at 14:57

    Hey, Dani! I’ll have to try those fish recipes from In the Mix for my next sous vide/water bath adventure with Thermomix!

    Can’t wait to cook with you this summer 😉

  20. Madame Thermomix

    13 March 2012 at 14:56

    Fish does cook well in a water bath, Nora, with extremely interesting texture results. Feel free to pass the link to this blog post to anyone who cares to read about Thermomix as a water bath, and let me know if they have any further suggestions. Cheers!

  21. Madame Thermomix

    13 March 2012 at 14:54

    I can’t wait to try the water bath of fish and even vegetables, Jo. What a nice appliance our Thermomix is!

  22. Madame Thermomix

    13 March 2012 at 14:53

    Thanks for your comment, Helene! Thermomix works beautifully as a home water bath for either individually sous-vide packed portions or, as in my post, two steaks in one pack. To ensure even cooking, the water must flow freely around the food so you can’t over fill the internal steamer basket.

    Your recipe for Heston’s Meat Fruit is on my list of must-makes 🙂

    I’ll keep you – and all my readers – posted on Dani Valent’s visit this summer. We’ll really be In The Mix now!

  23. Madame Thermomix

    13 March 2012 at 14:50

    You’re so right, Louise!

  24. Louise Thomson

    13 March 2012 at 12:20

    Another reason to love Herbie the Thermomix.

  25. Madame Thermomix

    13 March 2012 at 10:44

    Just another way that Thermomix can declutter your kitchen and provide added value, all the while helping you to eat well and cook with joy! Cheers, Maureen!

  26. Maureen

    13 March 2012 at 04:38

    I have had my eye on a new sous vide machine so now I can use my Thermomix instead. Way cool!

  27. Jo @ Quirky Cooking

    12 March 2012 at 22:43

    Thanks for this post, Jane! I still haven’t tried this, must do it. 🙂

  28. ThermomixBlogger Helene

    12 March 2012 at 21:58

    Lovely post and oooh… that venison! The first time I used Thermomix as a water bath was when making Heston’s Meat Fruit:
    http://www.superkitchenmachine.com/2011/11213/heston-blumenthal-meat-fruit-recipe.html

    Heston uses a proper sous vide machine of course, but I was determined to adapt for TMX. It worked well in theory but there was a tad too much to fit easily into the steaming basket, so I ended up altering the recipe and eliminating that step. For smaller quantities as this lovely venison, it’s perfect!

    I see Dani Valent is coming your way in July — what a treat! Sounds like too much fun… Can’t wait to see those photos 😉

  29. Nora

    12 March 2012 at 20:08

    Funny but I was just saying that you could use your Thermomix as a water bath at the Masterclass Ruth held in Dublin last week! So your post comes at the perfect time. I haven’t tried this method of cooking yet but I’m thinking of cooking fish that way. Must be so tender and moist. Can’t wait!

  30. Dani Valent

    12 March 2012 at 11:59

    Hello Madame!

    Great post! I’ve got a couple of sous vide dishes in my book In the Mix …along with a rather lovely Tempura recipe ;)…. The Salmon Confit (p109) is cooked in a water bath in the Varoma using a slightly different technique but the same principle and there’s a Grouper recipe (p104) where the fish is cooked in the TM basket, just like Chris’s recipe.

    See more about In the Mix here: http://www.facebook.com/InTheMixGreatThermomixRecipes

    And remember, I’m coming your way in July!

    Dani

  31. Madame Thermomix

    12 March 2012 at 10:06

    So glad to hear it, Mark! And I love your photo, too. Water bath is just another reason to love our Thermomix!

  32. Mark

    12 March 2012 at 09:58

    I have been using my thermomix for exactly the same thing as is one of the reasons I bought mine. It makes a great steak as you can see here -> http://365thermomix.com/2012/02/26/sous-vide/

    I just wish they had a +5oC button on the thermomix so you could do 65oc or 75oC etc. so that you could fine tune it even more.

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