The Best Anova Culinary Sous Vide Precision Cooker Bluetooth, Immersion Circulator, 800 Watts, Black
The Anova Precision Cooker makes it easy to achieve professional-level cooking results at home. To use, simply attach the cooker to any water-filled pot, put your food in a sealable bag, and set the time and temperature. The Precision Cooker heats and circulates the water to a precise temperature, cooking food to an exact temperature which creates maximum tenderness and moisture retention (without worry of overcooking). The Anova Precision Cooker connects to your phone, so you can cook amazing meals by the touch of a button - spend less time tied to the kitchen by relying on the app to notify you when your food is ready to eat.
I've been looking into Sous Vide cooking for over a year now reading reviews etc. I finally pulled the plug on this model and couldn't be happier with this purchase. We've used it everyday for over a month now. You name it we've cooked it (eggs, steak, pork roast, vegetables, fish, desert toppings.. and even used it to ripen fruit!) Not a single complaint. I won't bore you with descriptions of how the juicy or wonderful or delicious meals have been as its already been said dozens of times in these reviews. If you are considering this purchase, just be aware you can't use it to cook a meal in a hurry and you need to plan ahead. (Think of it like cooking with a crock pot... low temperature cooking over long periods of time ... slow and steady) .Early yesterday we decided to challenge this cooker with the tough meat challenge. As you may know, one of claims of sous vide cooking is it can make the toughest cut of meat tender. So... we asked the butcher provide us with a cheap inexpensive cut of meat which was a chuck underblade steak (also sometimes called a bottom chuck steak)... these are cuts that all too often turn out really tough. Be aware that tough meats need to cook for a much longer period of time. Following the instructions for cooking a tough cut of beef to medium rare... we cooked ours at 149 degrees for 19 hours ( recommended time is 16 to 24 hours) . The result ... was a delicious melt in your mouth delight, no knife needed, cut it with the side of a fork dinner. Really amazing.NOTE: You absolutely DO NOT .. I repeat you DO NOT need a vacuum sealer or Food Saver type of appliance to use this cooker! A zip lock bag works just as well. We have used both equally with the same great results. In regards to this cooker, the only advantage we found with the food saver was being able to bulk purchase meat / chicken. We put the meat into a food saver bags with our seasonings of choice, seal them up then throw them in the freezer. We then have a supply of ready to cook meals waiting for our Anova Culinary Bluetooth Precision Cooker, Black And "Yes" you can cook frozen food right from the freezer by just adding two hours on to the recommend cooking time. FYI: There is an awesome "sous-vide-time-and-temperature-guide" located under the Resources tab on the chefsteps website.Last... you also DO NOT need one of those large clear containers you see being used with many of these Sous Vide cookers. Just clamp this unit on to the edge of any large pot you have and it works great. Just be aware when cooking for long periods (like cooking a tough cut of meat for 24 hours) water will evaporate so you want to make sure the water is always covering the food being cooked and to add more water if necessary. One trick to prevent water loss is to tightly cover the top of the pot with plastic wrap. Seal if off the best you can (working around the precision cooker) to close off the top of the pot. Another hack... do as I did. I stole this idea from another reviewer here on Amazon of using a cooler with a hole cut in the lid. I chose the Igloo Island Breeze Cooler (Diablo Red, 9-Quart) (The price of this cooler fluctuates up and down. Be patient ... I picked up mine for $10. Anyway, by using a cooler... the water heated by the Precision Cooler is insulated from outside air so the cooker doesn't have to work as hard to keep the water hot thus saving on electricity, and with the lid closed the water that evaporates, condenses on the underside of the lid and drops back into the cooler. NET: We had ours running for 19 hours of cooking without and drop in the water level. Cool!
So the unit is fantastic and worked like a champ..... right up to the point where it didn't. Something went wrong with the thermostat and it no longer was able to regulate a correct temperature. What can I say, its a machine and its prone to break I suppose but I didn't have it for a full week and I would like to think that the components used to build this were more robust than that. Ill give it another try and if it doesn't work Ill find another manufacturer that isn't afraid to use dependable parts.UPDATE......So thanks to Amazon and their no BS return/replacement policy I received my new Anova yesterday. I went to try it out today and set the temp to 176.0 and let it heat up the water. Once it got to 160+/- the temperature began to fluctuate again like the original unit did. I found it hard to believe that I received two defective units and began to investigate what I might be doing wrong. After some testing I discovered that when the hot steam is allowed to enter into the vents on the rear of the unit, the fluctuations of the temperature began. If I blocked the steam then the unit worked perfectly. Heres a picture of the remedy. This problem does not occur when cooking at lower temps when the water does not create so much steam which is why I never noticed it before.
Weeell. This _was_ an amazing cooker. I mean, it was it did was it was supposed to do.: It cooked things. It was a kitchen appliance. Life moved on.Then Anova pushed an update to their app that requires you to pair your kitchen appliance with your facebook profile. I'm not kidding here. You need to link your facebook account in order to use your kitchen appliance. I mean, i'm looking at my blender and my pressure cooker and they seem to work fine without needing access to my social network.I just want to heat up water to cook things.
How could Anova design a 200 hundred dollar cooking unit, that can heat water to 210 degrees, and then sits on top of that steaming water, but is susceptible/prone to malfunction because of inevitable steam intrusion into the control head??? I used the unit for two weeks and LOVED it, then the current temp digital readout went haywire multiple times and made the unit unusable (see photo -actual water temp 190 - readout 103). Check the 1 star reviews - this is not a fluke, and is so common that ANOVA addresses it in the customer support section - their solution - put your unit in a bag of rice for 24 hours to dry it out and hopefully that will fix it, but if it doesn't "you have a problem"???? WOW! Another customer support solution was to cover the pot if it is steaming. No where in the literature is this addressed or does it say I need to buy specialty cooking containers. TOTALLY UNACCEPTABLE. So what you have is a solid, well constructed great cooking immersion circulator that is so poorly designed that it will not last cooking in the environment that it specifically will spend its life operating in. Akin to designing a lawnmower that the engine will fail if it gets grass clippings on it. How hard is it to vapor proof some electronics!!! What a disappointment. I will buy a new one when Anova solves their engineering/design malpractice.....
I returned the item because Anova updated the phone app to force you to buy Wifi access. My model was bluetooth only and I could no longer control the device via the app. Plus, my model didn't come with Wifi Access, so I was forced to use the manual control. When I purchased the item, I had full control from the app, as it was advertized. This was a complete bait and switch. The worst part is, I now have angry friends and family who bought one on my word that it was a good product.