Yes, I know, but bear with me here.
I've been thinking about getting an electric cooktop, and reading about them online a lot of people seem to mention that on some of the low settings, their cooktop will keep water at a constant boiling/simmering temperatures, like, say, 90 C (194 F)
In order for that to happen, it must mean that the heating element itself is only heating up to that temperature, high? And thus of course the temperature cannot get higher than the hot plate itself.
By that logic, if an electric cooktop happened to have a setting that would leave it at around 74 C (165 F), does that mean I could use it to cook some chicken breast precisely to its safe internal temperature?
Would be like a sous vide – no risk of over- or undercooking it! Right? Or am I missing something?
EDIT: For further clarification, when I say electric, I mean traditional ones with a solid plate burner. Sorry!
EDIT 2: Okay, so not sous vide-level precision. I've learned a lot from your wonderful answers, and my new plan is to lower my standards and attempt the following:
Putting a pot of water with a lid on the electric coil cooker (so it's an enclosed space filled with a great thermal conductor)
Cycle the device on and off figure out a rate for, erhm… manual time modulation that would keep the coil at X+Y Celsius (where X is the temp I want and Y is however many more degrees it needs to be to compensate for heat loss, which I would need to figure out for that setup as well)
Turn it on and off again at regular intervals according to the rate I found (yeah impractical but I could get a smart outlet to do it for me if it works!)
Maybe I could get a large pot (more thermal mass, less temp variation) and exclusively use it for this (more consistent setup, less temp variation), and figure out a reliable duty cycle that keeps it at a given temperature for three different quantities of water (such as a third, two thirds, and nearly full capacity).
Hopefully I can end up with water consistently at maybe +-4 C of a target temperature, and finally achieve hands-off, dummy-proof cooking! (useful since I can be a bit of a dummy sometimes). If you're wondering why I don't get a circulator, I've made a comment down below to clarify.