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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Location
    N.E. Iowa
    Posts
    314

    Vacuum pump to preserve food?

    Has anyone tried using a refrigeration vacuum pump to vacuum seal food in storage bags to help preserve it, and if you have, do you have any tips?

    I just got a smoker and am going to try smoking some cheddar cheese and want to seal and preserve some. I'll probably use hickory chips, but thought mesquite might be good for cheese also?

    Also, if anyone has smoked shrimp in their smoker I'd be interested to know what recipes you've used for marinades and brines.
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Nor-Cal
    Posts
    14
    Ive never thought about using a vacuum pump for sealing food, but now that you put that thought in my head...... Im thinking pull a vacuum on a cylinder then when needed just bring the cylinder in the house (with a hose and small stem access fitting), suck out the none condensables of the bag and away you go... Iam wondering if you could draw to much out of the product and effect taste. I will try it because it sounds fun

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Western PA
    Posts
    25,440

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    2,584
    I have a FoodSaver, that vacuums bags and seals them. I've kept uncooked meats and Blanched Vegetables with no loss of flavor for close to a year in the freezer. Kept Smoked and cooked foods for three to four months. The Bags are a little pricy, roll sleeves are a little cheaper. For stuff with a lot of liquid I have to freeze then vac/seal, the next day.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Bennington, Vermont U.S.A.
    Posts
    13,864
    I'm not really sure that you have to pull a deep vacuum on food to keep it from spoiling. If you get most of the air out of the bag first and then double bag, it will last a long long time.

    My SIL uses a straw to suck the air out of the bag. (Its fun to watch )

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Elmwood Park
    Posts
    23
    If anyone does try this I'm wondering how deep a vacuum you would pull. Would you use a micron gage to tell? If so does pulling a deeper vacuum effect the taste? This could be experimented with in various ways with various foods.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Bennington, Vermont U.S.A.
    Posts
    13,864
    Quote Originally Posted by Jack8080 View Post
    If anyone does try this I'm wondering how deep a vacuum you would pull. Would you use a micron gage to tell? If so does pulling a deeper vacuum effect the taste? This could be experimented with in various ways with various foods.
    You could theorectically pull enough moisture our of a piece of meat to turn it into a hockey puck.

    Question is, "Why would you want to ?"

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Elmwood Park
    Posts
    23
    Quote Originally Posted by benncool View Post
    You could theorectically pull enough moisture our of a piece of meat to turn it into a hockey puck.

    Question is, "Why would you want to ?"
    Now I'm wondering what the NHL would say to that.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Southeastern PA
    Posts
    61
    Quote Originally Posted by Fabrk8r View Post
    Has anyone tried using a refrigeration vacuum pump to vacuum seal food in storage bags to help preserve it, and if you have, do you have any tips?

    I just got a smoker and am going to try smoking some cheddar cheese and want to seal and preserve some. I'll probably use hickory chips, but thought mesquite might be good for cheese also?

    Also, if anyone has smoked shrimp in their smoker I'd be interested to know what recipes you've used for marinades and brines.
    Hmmm- it probably would work- it's just a much stronger vacuum than those 'seal a meal' things.. It's funny you say this because yesterday in work one of the guys was kidding around saying he wanted to figure a way to 'speed cool' his beer with refrigerant. After seeing what R22 can do to my skin first hand- I wondered if you could speed-freeze meat too hehehe!

    As for smoking shrimp- I will have to experiment and get back to you. I do smoke salmon lightly with mesquite and my entire family agrees it's wonderful. Here's what I do:

    Get a couple nice salmon fillets (I prefer the skin on for grilling purposes)
    Season lightly with olive oil (this will add a nice light buttery type taste too)
    lightly season with kosher or sea salt, pepper (I prefer white)
    I also put a pinch of garlic powder on, some paprika, and sometimes I'll chop some fresh fennel from the herb garden.

    I light the coals, get em goin good, then put the fish on, add a good handful of mesquite chips and close it up- and smoke it around 200-225 degrees until the fish is about done (and the smoke too) roughly 10-15 min for a few pounds of salmon.

    Then I will use my super spatula, gently remove the fish from the skin (which by now is fairly crisped up) and move it to the side out of direct heat. Some people eat the skin, we dont :/

    I then close the grill and let the fish finish for however long it takes till it's done and dig in! Goes great with just about any grilled veggies, but our personal favorite is asparagus! Yesterday I made the Salmon with grilled zucchini, but I used apple wood chips instead of mesquite (was too lazy to go refill my chip bucket out in the shed lol) and it was still good. Mesquite makes a difference though I think.

    If anyone tries it I'm interested in what you think!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Posts
    239
    vacuum processing makes the best cookie dough. I freeze strawberries, blueberries and raspberries from my garden in dry ice to hard freeze quickly and then vacuum pack portions. Nearly like fresh when thawed.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Winston-Salem NC
    Posts
    1,133
    Quote Originally Posted by Carbonite View Post
    Hmmm- it probably would work- it's just a much stronger vacuum than those 'seal a meal' things.. It's funny you say this because yesterday in work one of the guys was kidding around saying he wanted to figure a way to 'speed cool' his beer with refrigerant. After seeing what R22 can do to my skin first hand- I wondered if you could speed-freeze meat too hehehe!

    As for smoking shrimp- I will have to experiment and get back to you. I do smoke salmon lightly with mesquite and my entire family agrees it's wonderful. Here's what I do:

    Get a couple nice salmon fillets (I prefer the skin on for grilling purposes)
    Season lightly with olive oil (this will add a nice light buttery type taste too)
    lightly season with kosher or sea salt, pepper (I prefer white)
    I also put a pinch of garlic powder on, some paprika, and sometimes I'll chop some fresh fennel from the herb garden.

    I light the coals, get em goin good, then put the fish on, add a good handful of mesquite chips and close it up- and smoke it around 200-225 degrees until the fish is about done (and the smoke too) roughly 10-15 min for a few pounds of salmon.

    Then I will use my super spatula, gently remove the fish from the skin (which by now is fairly crisped up) and move it to the side out of direct heat. Some people eat the skin, we dont :/

    I then close the grill and let the fish finish for however long it takes till it's done and dig in! Goes great with just about any grilled veggies, but our personal favorite is asparagus! Yesterday I made the Salmon with grilled zucchini, but I used apple wood chips instead of mesquite (was too lazy to go refill my chip bucket out in the shed lol) and it was still good. Mesquite makes a difference though I think.

    If anyone tries it I'm interested in what you think!

    Well, card board fashioned into a tube around a can, with ends duct taped into place, with a small hole in the top for a refrigerant hose, and an smaller hole in the bottom, and some cheap, environmentally friendly refrigerant handy; you could probably shoot liquid down the hose, through the hole and after just a short amount of time, you would have a cold beverage.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Bennington, Vermont U.S.A.
    Posts
    13,864
    Quote Originally Posted by stonewallred View Post
    Well, card board fashioned into a tube around a can, with ends duct taped into place, with a small hole in the top for a refrigerant hose, and an smaller hole in the bottom, and some cheap, environmentally friendly refrigerant handy; you could probably shoot liquid down the hose, through the hole and after just a short amount of time, you would have a cold beverage.
    When I was stationed in Vietnam back in the mid 1960's my job was the same as it is now. A/C tech. Our company ran the radio communications through out the Delta with little sites spread out.

    When the AC went down in one of the vans the equipment would over heat so they would fly me in to fix it. (I tried like hell anyways with my limited knowledge at the time.)

    On these sites there was plenty of beer but limited refrigeration and no ice.
    The guys were glad to see me come because I had or could get an unlimited supply or R-12. We would take half of the beer out of the case. Wrap 12 cans with rags and then drench them with refrigerant. R-12 and cigarettes were good for you back in those days.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Skiatook, OK
    Posts
    322


    benncool - I was with the duce(362nd Signal Co.) out of DaLat 68/69 - who were you with??
    Don't annoy the combat veteran!!!!
    All gave some - Some gave ALL

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