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French & Japanese Chefs Meat Cookery Question

rogerf | Dec 18, 2014 06:43 PM

Hello all,

Interested in trying to find out more about a form of meat cooking that some chefs in France, Japan & the US seem to do. It seems to be very low temperature cooking (in oven or on the grill or stovetop) often with frequent turning and resting of the meat too.

A few years ago I had a piece of beef at Corton in NYC that was very tender, juicy and memorable. I had assumed it was probably cooked sous vide, but reading Paul Liebrandt's cookbook this year it may have been cooked using a method he learned from Pierre Gagnaire where a piece of meat is cooked very, very slowly in a pan and constantly turned and loses very little water and fat.

Then read about Kawamura steakhouse in Tokyo where the chef grills a piece of beef for up to an hour, frequently resting it off the heat during that time, until is a medium rare that can be cut with a fork.

Doing more reading, and quoting various bloggers:
Alain Passard in France. His poultry was "cooked on the stove over the lowest possible heat in almost no liquid (except for some salted Bordier butter), turned by hand, the skin never broken, for a couple of hours."

Quintesence in Tokyo "duck which from memory had been roasted for 3 hours but during this time it would be taken out of the oven
and turned over every 5 minutes, left for a minute and then put back in the oven. This process made the meat soooo
tender, amazing!"

"According to our waiter, the roasting process goes
like this: the meat is roasted for a minute, then allowed to rest for five, roasted for another minute, then allowed
to rest for five. The process is repeated some thirty times for 3 hours in total, and this low-temperature long-time roasting procedure ensures that the inside is cooked perfectly without the outside being dried up. The juicy and tender pork belly, with its seductive layers of fat, proved that this time consuming process is totally worthwhile."

Similar to sous vide "but instead of circulating water and low temperature, the kitchen used a low heat oven and rotating periods of cooking and rest to thoroughly cook this meat. The total cooking process takes about three hours, while the meat alternates between one minute of cooking and five minutes of rest."

So questions:
Has anyone experimented with this, or are there any recipes, books, articles or further reading out there about it?

Will it give a better result than sous vide or just a more hands on way to achieve a similar result?

I think I understand slow cooking to retain moisture, but curious about the science behind a stop/start method of constant mini rests during cooking, instead of just after?

Thanks in advance!

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