Carrying a Torch

I have devoted a lot of time and effort into arriving at a consistent perfectly cooked steak. A combination of sous vide cooking and a high-heat final sear works every time to produce a medium rare result with a good crust. But there’s always room for improvement, which I found in the form of a new tool.

Before I tell you about my new toy, er, tool, I’d like to ask:

I had funded the Kickstarter campaign for the Searzall, a device that promised to convert a common blowtorch into the perfect tool for searing food.


It loks like an antique microphone, but it’s designed to attach to the end of the torch, like so:


As you can see, the thing gets nearly white-hot when it’s been running for a few minutes. It’s not just a flame, it’s also a miniature infrared broiler. I decided to try it out to sear a few steaks cooked sous vide to 135 °F — a perfect medium rare.

I put the cooked steaks on an expendable metal sheet pan, which I rested on top of my stove grates, minimizing the possibility of setting something other than the steak on fire.


I fired up the torch. That isn’t photo blowout you’re seeing, it the actual output from the Searzall.


Time to sear:


In under five minutes the steaks acquired a dark crust.


And they were still medium rare inside.


Steak is the simplest application. I foresee using my Searzall to crisp the skin on fish filets, caramelize cut citrus fruit, and, of course make crème brûlée. The possibilities are endless:


I only wish it was larger. I had a metric ton of snow outside that needed melting.

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