I put together a $25 sous-vide egg cooker with a $20 PID temperature control module I purchased from ebay (which included a thermocouple and free shipping), a $2 immersion heater and a $1 extension cord (both purchased at a thrift store). I added a few crimp on connectors that I already had (but we’ll say you could get a few for $2 at the hardware store) and a free bowl and clothespin that I stole from the kitchen.
I’m happy to report that it cooked the egg just fine.
I’m not 100% certain I’m going to get into Sous-Vide cooking, but the technology has several alternative uses: unpasteurized milk heating for making cheese, automatic baby bottle warmer, etc…
A few downsides to my $25 setup:
- The temperature of the water in the bowl would vary by about 5 degrees from the top to the bottom as I did not have any type of pump to circulate the water. I was hoping that convection currents would do something for me, but apparently the water just stratified.
- It has a few exposed wires laying about, and a bowl of water sitting near them. For permanent use an enclosure will add to the overall cost.
- It can only cook a single egg at a time. The immersion heater draws 125 watts at 120 volts (around one amp) which can easily be switched by the internal relay in the PID controller (rated up to 3 Amps). But, it won’t work with anything big (like the electric kettle I also purchased at the thrift store) until I add a bigger 10-25 amp relay (solid state or otherwise). If you plan on running a big 8-12 amp load from your PID module, I suggest getting one that has a 12 volt output designed to directly control a solid state relay.