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Searzall Torch Attachment, Small, Stainless
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- Searzall is an attachment secured to the top of a blowtorch to create the perfect searing temperature without the off-putting aromas that typically result when cooking with blowtorches
- By forcing the thin flame of the blowtorch through two layers of fine, high-temperature-resistant wire mesh, it produces a consistent, evenly spread flame that provides a professional quality finish to meats and other food items
- back screen is coated in palladium which provides even more temperature and oxidation resistance
- includes: one (1) Searzall , one (1) aluminum sleeve adapter, typically pre-attached to the rear of your Searzall, one (1) 2-mm allen key, one (1) pre-attached thumbscrew, one (1) Searzall spacing stick, and one allen screw pre-attached to the sleeve adapter
- Searzall is compatible with the Bernzomatic TS8000 torch head, and 16.4 ounce propane tank
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CHOKING HAZARD -- Small parts. Not for children under 3 yrs.
The Searzall is an attachment secured to the top of a blowtorch to create the perfect searing temperature without the off-putting aromas that typically result when cooking with blowtorches. By forcing the thin flame of the blowtorch through two layers of fine, high-temperature-resistant wire mesh, it produces a consistent, evenly spread flame that provides a professional quality finish to meats and other food items. The Searzall's back screen is coated is palladium which provides even more temperature and oxidation resistance.
Top customer reviews
Why would you want a Searzall? Following the completion of sous vide cooking, most cooks like to finish the cooking process with a sear to produce Maillard reaction flavors and attractive coloration on the food. Doing this in a cast iron skillet works but often ends up cooking too far into the food instead of just searing the outside surface (think a thin gray band near the surface of an otherwise rare steak). Another choice is using hand-held gas torches. Unfortunately, using direct butane or propane flames on food can sear unevenly due to the small but intense heat source, plus taint the food's flavor with uncombusted gas smells. The Searzall addresses this problem with a design that incorporates stacked diffusion screens. These screens diffuse the handheld torch's flame and catalyze any uncombusted gas, giving a nice even searing heat with no off-flavors. The Searzall works well for searing food surfaces evenly and superficially, without producing a penetrating heat that cooks the food interior. With careful use you can get a perfect seared exterior without having flakes of carbon on the food surface, or a gray band just under the surface of your rare meat, or oddly gas-tainted flavors. The Searzall does, however, have a couple of disadvantages.
The Searzall mounts on the end of a (not included) Bernzomatic TS8000 propane torch, and should be fueled by a green camping-style 16.4-oz propane tank (also not included). Use only the TS8000 or TS4000 torch, none other. For safety's sake, use only 16.4-oz propane tanks, as the taller and thinner ones are more prone to tip over. Don't use MAP gas, it runs hotter and the Searzall diffusion screens may not tolerate it.
It is absolutely essential that you calibrate the Searzall's mounting position on your torch head, and "season" the Searzall before its first use. The Searzall website has a helpful video that is well worth watching. The Searzall arrives with an extra set of screens as well as the calibration spacer and a small Allen wrench to mount the Searzall collar on the head of your Bernzomatic torch. After seasoning the Searzall body displays a very nice blue and indigo coloration.
You'll use the Searzall on food that's about to be plated, with circular motions comparable to airbrushing. The Searzall should be held very close to the food, with the Searzall's wire cage nearly touching the food surface. With a bit of practice you can achieve a great surface sear without overcooking the interior of the food.
On the downside, I do not see any easy method to sear multiple plates for a group of people. Each piece to be seared will take a minute or two per side. This might be impractical and lead to delays and cold food, but it works great if you're searing only a couple of plates. Also keep in mind that you'll have to buy a Bernzomatic TS8000 torch and a 16.4-oz camping-style propane cylinder. These purchases nearly double the price of the Searzall.
It works to sear meat.
I'm SO glad that I purchased the TS8000 to go with, and not the alternatively recommended TS4000. That would have been unfortunate.
I don't know that the Searzall actually improves the searing of meat. I spreads out the flame and heat source over a wider area (than the naked Bernzomatic flame tube), and makes it consistent throughout that area, but that also dilutes the heat, needing you to hold it longer in one place, or make more passes for a given brownness. Of course, the area you are searing is considerably larger than the area seared by the naked torch head, but then you have to hold it close to the meat, which means the bulky Searzall head hides the area of your protein that is actually being seared. You keep moving the head to make sure you aren't burning the current patch of meat, but then when the Searzall head is out of the way, you see that you moved it too early. No doubt practice improves this. I've only done a dozen-or-so pieces of food with Searzall at this writing, plus 5 or 6 additional chunks of protein with the torch, sans Searzall. That's not a big sample from which to judge. Foods included beaf steaks, fish steaks, turkey legs - all of which I cooked sous vide and needed to pre-sear or post-sear or both.
If/when the diffuser screens wear out, I will probably replace them, but if the head itself breaks or gets lost, I likely would not spend another 75 bucks plus shipping to replace the unit.
Blasting a piece of meat with the naked TS8000 torch head is a little slower, overall than doing it with the Searzall, but not by an order of magnitude... just by a bit. When torching meat on a rack or (I sometimes use an aluminum) pie plate, the Searzall is held with the outer screen face horizontal, which means the diffuse flame billows up all around the head, making the whole area, right back to your hand and the fuel tank REALLY hot.
If the piece of protein has an uneven surface, I find that the flat Searzall flame has much the same issue as what I used to use... a blazing-hot cast-iron skillet. That is, the higher ridges of the meat get singed while the valleys don't get browned. In that case, it's actually easier to just use the naked torch-head with its much smaller, pointier flame... plus you can see what you are doing.
So, while I'm not sorry I bought the Searzall, I can't really give as strong a recommendation as the hype would suggest.
But, take all that with a grain of salt, since I'm just some schmoe in the home kitchen, not a pro chef in a commercial or restaurant kitchen.
The device is lightly, but solidly constructed. It was well packaged and survived its trip to me with no damage. The instructions were clear, for both the mounting (and precision spacing using the supplied spacing stick) and the seasoning directions were actually repeated both in the main instruction booklet and on a separate ORANGE, DON'T MISS THIS! piece of paper, to be SURE that I didn't miss the need to "season" the flame head before first use.
So, finally, it's a well-made product, and NOT a rip-off, but I found it less amazing than its hype. There ya go. Make of this what you will.
If you get one, I recommend you also purchase an "Ov Glove" or similar to wear while using.
I've not noted any type of gas smell or taste on the meat. I'm still on my first screen. Just a note when you're tempering the unit before your first use. They have you point the unit down (like you're using it) and leave it on full power. This will greatly discolor the unit. Don't worry, it's just part of the process. Keep going for the whole time. I took a star off for the pricing. It seems a little steep for what you get. Also, it takes a little longer to do the job than I anticipated. However, it does work as advertised. It doesn't keep cooking the meat like a skillet can, so you still get the benefit of a nice juicy piece of meat that you look for when you sous vide. Check out youtube for some different ways to use it.