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vacuum sealing machines

Discussion in 'Food Forum' started by bassman-dan, Dec 17, 2004.

  1. bassman-dan

    bassman-dan NRA Lifer

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    I posted this question on the non-glocking forum without success so I'm hoping we have some "Food Saver" owners in this area.
    I have been looking at some of the different models available and have found that they have a large price range with a lot of features I am unfamiliar with.
    I am planning on using the machine for vacuum sealing packages of meat, game, and fish. I probably won't use it for canning.
    If you have any experience with these machines I would appreciate your opinion on what features are worthwhile and which ones can be dispensed with. Many thanks.
     
  2. MrsKitty

    MrsKitty

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    ;d

    Interests me too :)
     

  3. Nicky D

    Nicky D CLM

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    I have a "Food Saver", I forget the model but it is one of the low end models. It works great and I love it. If it ever dies or I decide to spend my money on something other than guns & photography I would get another one in a heart beat. The only thing is, this time I would go with the professional model of the Food Saver. It has a couple of features that are better than what I have. Right now when I am trying to make a bag, I need to seal it first. To do this I have to hold the button down while it cycles through a full vacuum and seal process. The other model has a seal function. Also, I have to hold down the button for the full process of vacuuming and sealing bags. This may not sound like a pain, but when you are doing large quantities, it gets aggravating.SO personally I think this is product where I would definitely recommend spending the extra money.
     
  4. JPinAZ

    JPinAZ

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    If you have a membership, get the package at Costco. It comes with one of the higher end models along with extra bags & a couple containers for a pretty good price.
     
  5. Miss Maggie

    Miss Maggie

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    I've wondered about these sealers and know someone who wants one, but wants it in my kitchen. I hate extra clutter and don't want it unless it's really useful.

    How expensive are the bags? How does the price compare with just buying Zip-locs? Does anyone know? Thanks.

    Miss Maggie
     
  6. hispeedlodrag

    hispeedlodrag needs vacation

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    I frequently use mine. The bags are not cheap, but they can be re-used to some extent. I buy the jumbo sampler packages that come with bags and rolls of different sizes. The prices are listed at the foodsaver website.
    Foods that are packaged in heavier bags (like the mylar chip bags) can be resealed multiple times.
    The system does work well, and your food will taste better that if frozen in ziplocks.
     
  7. Nicky D

    Nicky D CLM

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    The bags are more expensive compared to ziplock or whoever, but they are much better. With these bags you can reuse them as long as the bag is still in good shape, is cleaned out and has room for the whole vac and seal process. These bags are much thicker and stronger compare to your average ziplock bag. Food last much longer in the freezer. To give you an example of the difference between the two bags. Both my wife and I do surf fishing with frsh bait, well we save what is left over and freeze it. Well you can imagine what bait htat has been sitting out all day, even in a cooler would smell like. When we use to try and freeze it in a ziplock bag our freezer would smell fro days until the bait froze and the freezer cycled it self enough times to get rid of the odor. Now with the vac seal bags there is no oder from the time the bag is sealed!! The only thing you have to be careful with is any amount of liquid, you have to have as much liquid out of whatever you are sealing or else it will not seal properly. So would recommend a vac sealer to anyone.
     
  8. jrny

    jrny

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    These items are great. I bought one when they first came out. No frills, but it is still working.

    The bags are more expensive than ZipLocks, but they work better.

    Once every 2-3 months I buy a boatload of meats (in bulk or on sale) then Vacu-seal in dinner sized portions. This works great as I can "quick-thaw" most items in cold water in under 1 hour, some cases only 15 minutes.

    I use to do this with my veggies but it really wasn't cost effective.

    I tend to have many different types of cheeses and the vacu-seal extends the life of the cheese in the refrigerator.

    Occasionally I will cook in advance then freeze for later consumption.

    If I want to freeze a liquid, I simply place in a bowl, freeze then transfer to the freezer bag and vacu-seal.
     
  9. PDogSniper

    PDogSniper

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    With a sealer you can do this....

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  10. Nicky D

    Nicky D CLM

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    Damn PDog, are planning for when the man comes to confiscate our stuff;? ;? ;? ;R
     
  11. RonC

    RonC

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    We have a Food Saver, the model that has the seal feataure without the vacuum. Handles all sizes of bags and rolls that Food Saver makes.

    We are using Black&Decker bag rolls which are about half the food saver price.

    Bear in mind, the vacuum is the 'do good' in this system. The removal of oxygen from the package extends the storage life and virtually eliminates freezer burn vs zip lock type bags.

    We have heard of people reusing bags by leaving a 6-8 inch tail to allow room for multiple reseals. We freeze mostly meat and my wife will not reuse plastic bags of any kind for meat because of safety considerations.
     
  12. Elk-ruser

    Elk-ruser EMT-B IV

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    I use mine all the time. A friend got a deal for me on a foodsaver professional 2 model. Well worth the xtra bucks for an upgrade.

    IMO- the main spec to look as is duty cycle. i.e. How many cycles before the thing needs a break. Even the lower end Foodsaver model was like 20 but the professional was 200 or something, then the real high end models are continuous.

    We butchered a young heiffer Buffalo last year and with 150lbs of meat, we used only two rolls of bag mat'l. Pretty economical, I thought.

    Well worth it.

    Erik
     
  13. BikerGoddess

    BikerGoddess Got hairspray?

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    I have one of the upper end models of the Tilia Food Saver. It has the optional canning jar lid thingie, which I use most every morning (for my coffee). I use their bags for bagged stuff.

    At one time, I had a cheap knockoff one that was just crap. I threw it away, it was so bad. Had a wire that heated up to seal the bags, and the seal was crappy. It would stay sealed for more than a few minutes only 10% of the time. The better models have a wider strip that seals - look for that.

    For it to work best, you do need to get all of the air out. I've found that some of the cheaper bags let air stay trapped in the bottom half of the bag. So, I get the Tilia ones, because wasting the bag *and* the food is more expensive than buying better bags.

    Some things can't be stored longer with this method. Milk and carrots are two I've tried with poor results. Strawberries don't get moldy, but have some funky taste, so it's a wash. However, meat and veggies going in the freezer can last up to a year (or longer. Ask me how I know.)

    You can also marinate supposedly faster with a vacuum sealer. Marshmallows are fun to play with, if you get the jar attachment. Soft items are best frozen briefly first.

    Next to my espresso machine, my sealer is the next most used appliance in my kitchen.

    Laura
     
  14. PDogSniper

    PDogSniper

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    ;z ;z ;z
     
  15. Mild Bill

    Mild Bill Millennium Member

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    The Zip-Glock bag!!

    [​IMG]

    ;c
     
  16. Mild Bill

    Mild Bill Millennium Member

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    Damn, I just noticed it's an HK...

    nevermind...

    ;c
     
  17. Mild Bill

    Mild Bill Millennium Member

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    I am very interested in this thread...
    I've been lazily trying to get some vac-seal guidance for a lil' while...

    I make, and hope to market, a Roast Pork/Turkey dressing or marinade...
    A seasoned paste that you cover the meat with, like frosting a cake...
    You simply cover and bake, then uncover and broil for the last 15 minutes for crust and color...

    I imagine offering a cooked product as well... Heat and Serve...

    I've been making this jarred product, roast pork and turkey for a few years now and never has someone not said
    that it was the best roast pork or turkey that they've ever tasted...
    And I'm in Tampa, the Cuban roast pork capital...

    Here's the thing...
    The meat is very flavorful and fork tender, but it's the juice produced that we drizzle over the meat,
    bread, potatos, polenta, risotto, or rice that makes this meal pop...

    Is vacuuming something large, (5 pounds+/-) with a couple cups of important juice possible...
    I don't think so, but I dunno...
    I could slice the pork roast so it wouldn't be a bag-o-boulder...

    What if I froze the juice in an ice cube tray then quickly popped em' in a bag with the meat and vacuumed fast?

    Thanks...

    ;c
     
  18. Nicky D

    Nicky D CLM

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    Bill, you need to freeze or at least a good partial freezing before you can vaccumm save any liquid. My dad has actually frozen soup this way. He would freeze it in a container and vac & seal it. So give it a try, see how it turns out.
     
  19. BikerGoddess

    BikerGoddess Got hairspray?

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    Yup, liquids will just be sucked out of the bags (ok with jars, though). The ice cube thing will work, as will freezing the whole thing prior to sealing. If I were going for presentation, though, I might consider freezing the liquid in a shallow container, then putting that under the meat, sort of like a plate.

    Your size is mostly limited to how big a bag will fit in your sealer. I believe mine is a foot and a half across, so I couldn't do something like a ham because it wouldn't fit in the bag. Too bad there isn't a way to do 'expanding bags'...

    Laura
     
  20. Mild Bill

    Mild Bill Millennium Member

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    Thanks guys... I had a feeling the freezing thing would do the trick...

    ;c