Sous vide is a French phrase that is often translated as under vacuum. And for many chefs, sous vide is synonymous with cooking vacuum packaged food.
The idea of cooking food sealed inside packing isn't new. In fact, the egg has always come pre-packed and ready to cook.
Vacuum packing food is simply a modern convenience for doing something cooks have always done: cook and store food in a way that excludes air.
With traditional cooking techniques, if you get the timing wrong the food will either be under, or worse, overcooked.
Sous vide cooking is a technique that does away with the need to time things just right. That's because, for the first time, sous vide cooking gives us a way to add just enough heat to our food to raise the temperature to perfectly cooked.