Looking for a sous vide immersion circulator to make evenly cooked, tender chicken, beef or maybe elk but can't afford the hefty price tag? Even the PolyScience machine available through Williams-Sonoma (and the SousVide Supreme) cost more than $300 -- a typical car payment. Enter the Sansaire, developed by a team led by Scott Heimendinger, founder of the Seattle Food Geek blog and director of applied research for Nathan Myhrvold's Modernist Cuisine. Its projected retail price? $199.
Heimendinger just announced a Kickstarter campaign to fund the first production run of the Sansaire, in development for three years. With 28 days left to go, the campaign already is beyond fully funded. The goal was to raise $100,000 in 30 days; more than $170,000 has been pledged.
The Sansaire immersion circulator works with any container and will heat and circulate up to 6 gallons of water. The device contains heating coils, a thermometer, a microcontroller and a water-circulating motor that maintain a precise temperature in a water bath.
A prototype was tested by Serious Eats' J. Kenji Lopez-Alt in a post titled "The New $199 Sansaire Is the Solution We've Been Waiting For." Among the highlights Lopez-Alt pointed out:
"The controls are sleek and integrated. You adjust the temperature by rotating a smooth silver ring at the top of the unit, and the digital readout is clearly visible, even across the room or with the lights out.
I was immediately impressed by how powerful the heating element is. We got our water up from 58° F to the target temperature of 130° F in under ten minutes — far faster than the SousVide Supreme can do."
Money from the Kickstarter goes toward finalizing the tooling for molds and the exact components for production, including the circulating motor, LED display and rotary encoder used for the Sansaire's temperature ring. Once the final prototype is perfected, backers who have pledged $179 or more will start to receive Sansaires. If all goes as planned, delivery would begin in October or November.