Veggie Meat

I make “fake meat”  (seitan) in two forms,  both using the same basic recipe  which I adapted from various recipes found over at Vegan Dad’s blog.   Style 1 involves steaming and baking, resulting in a dense, sliceable product that makes good sandwich slices or pizza toppings.  For style 2 the same dough is pinched off in bits or formed into cutlet-shapes  and boiled in a seasoned broth,  like dumplings.   This produces a fluffy,  spongy product that is good with gravy or as a replacement for meat in casseroles such as stew, soup and lasagna.    It can taste Italian,  Mexican,  chickenish  or Thanksgiving-like,  depending on the herbs and spices used in the dough.    The main ingredients are beans and gluten flour so it’s got a lot of protein.   The version in the picture is the boiled/ baked sliceable version.

Veggie “Meat”  (Seitan)

1.  A cupful of  cooked beans,  either canned or home-cooked.   The variety you choose will affect the color more than the taste.   If you are going for a Mexican flavor,  use pintos.

2.  Put the beans in the blender along with 2 cups of water,  a quarter cup of olive oil and herbs and spices of your choice,  depending on what you have planned for the finished product.  If you want an Italian flavor,  use oregano,  rosemary,  garlic,  salt,  pepper,  fennel seeds,  etc,  to your taste.  For a Mexican flavor,  add taco seasoning.   For a  Thanksgiving flavor,  use poultry seasoning,  sage,  thyme,  etc.   Other good additions include celery seed,  onion powder,  paprika,  etc.   Just taste the mix and see if you like it.  Don’t forget the salt!

3.  Combine bean mixture with 2 1/2 – 3 cups of wheat gluten,  which you can buy in bulk at the health food store.  Knead this as if if were bread dough,  which in a way,  it is.  If you have a mixer with a dough hook (like a Bosch) this step will take about 30 seconds to produce a soft mound of savory-smelling dough.

4.  If you are going to make this sliceable,   form the dough into a loaf shape and wrap it up in aluminum foil.   You will need a steamer.  No steamer?   Then better make the dumpling version.  But if you have a steamer,   put the aluminum-foil clad loaf  in the top part of the steamer and let it steam for about an hour.  After that you can bake it  at 350 degrees for another hour to firm it up.  Take it out, unwrap it  and let it cool.  I think you will be surprised at how delicious it is.   Slice it thin and put it in a sandwich with mayo and  sliced tomato.  Yum.

5.  But if you don’t have a steamer,  just get a large pot of veggie broth or water boiling.   I  add fake chicken broth powder to the broth as it goes well with all flavors.   Pinch off pieces of the dough and toss it in the pot and boil for about 30  minutes,  depending on the size of the pieces.    The dough really expands and you end up with quite a lot of product but happily you can freeze it in its broth.    You can combine the seitan with cashew gravy and serve it over noodles or mashed potatoes.   You can smother it in BBQ sauce and serve in on buns for sloppy Joes.   You can use it in stir-fries.  The uses for this stuff is endless.

I want to credit Vegan Dad for his blog-full of  seitan recipes,  which I adapted  and  did not entirely invent out of my own little head.  (You might prefer his original recipes to mine!)

Today the Church commemorates  Great Martyr Artemios.

It is also Election Day in the USA and the 2nd day of VeganMoFo and NaNoWriMo.


4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. scholarofchrist
    Nov 02, 2010 @ 19:15:12

    I’ll give this recipe a try. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Xenia
    Nov 02, 2010 @ 20:18:57

    Thank you and God bless you in your studies.

  3. Jinx
    Nov 02, 2010 @ 23:35:50

    When you say a steamer, will a bamboo steamer work?

  4. Xenia
    Nov 02, 2010 @ 23:44:24

    Hi Jinx, I use a metal steamer but I don’t see why a bamboo steamer wouldn’t work.

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