Sometimes the meal you're cooking just keeps floating up! Like what?! Since when do steak or carrots float? Don't worry, here are some simple solutions for floating food because sinking is crucial for getting even doneness for anything you are cooking.
- Weigh the bag down with utensils.The most common way is to stick a food grade stainless steel knife or two in the bag to keep it from floating up. The stainless steel will not contaminate your meal, so no worries there! *Be sure not to stick in sharp objects because they will puncture your nicely sealed bags! For more information click here
- Alternative internal weights. This method uses alternative weighting options like pie weights, glass marbles, stainless steel fishing weights or ball bearings, even spare change. The key here is to seal these separately in their own bags. This will make cleanup much easier and prevent the leaching of any contaminants from the weights into the food.
- External weights. Alternately, you can use the same internal weights externally. Instead of placing them inside the food bag, you can clip their sealed pouches to the bottom of your cooking bag with a small bulldog or alligator clip! Another convenient external weighting tool is the simple stainless vegetable steamer basket placed upside-down on top of the bags. Because these expand from 5 ½ – 9 ½”/~14 – 24cm, they will fit most saucepans and stockpots. Steamer baskets are also ideal because they hold your floating bags down while still allowing water circulation through their built-in perforations.
- Press and seal: It’s as simple as it sounds! Take the bag with the food and roll the air out. This method can be effective if you carefully press all the air out. To do this place the food in the bag and compress the air around the food so that there is no air touching the food. While holding the food, roll it so it stays sealed. Also check out The Immersion Method
- Leave the bag open and clip it to the side of the pot. This technique is when all else fails!There will be cases when despite getting as much air out as possible and weighing your bag down it will still not stay down. For these rare situations, we recommend that you Don’t seal your bag. If you do go this route you must meet this criteria:
- Ensure that the bag is large or deep enough for whatever you’re cooking to be completely submerged by water while the top remains clipped to the side of the container. This is effectively a constant application of the immersion method, so air will not be making its way in from the top given pressure of the outside water.
- Keep the unsealed opening OUT of the water AT ALL TIMES.
- Periodically assist any gathered gases towards that opening using a silicon spatula or wooden spoon. Use something that will not compromise the integrity of the bag with sharp edges.
- Clipping the bags: Sometimes the bags can go for a floating tour - An easy solution to counter this is simply clipping the bag to the side of your pot. Bulldog clips, any office binder clips or even a chip bag clip if you're feeling adventurous will work.
For another full read of all the information written above check out our blog post!