Tuesday, January 12, 2010

I’ve become a Seitan worshipper!

I found the store bought versions of seitan (wheat gluten-based meat substitute) too soft, their flavour too subtle and salty, and their expense too high. I read in some vegan cookbooks that seitan was too difficult and time-consuming to make for one’s self, but I'm here to tell you nothing could be further from the truth!

My first attempts involved the boiled versions of seitan which really didn’t satisfy me with their soft, spongy texture so I’ve modified a recipe where the seitan is baked and produces a dense, sausage-like roll.

Vegan Garlic Sausage (Seitan)
1-1/2 cups vital wheat gluten
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1 tsp salt (or less)
2 tsp paprika
2 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 tsp marjoram
1/2 tsp savory
2 tsp minced or crushed garlic (I used already-crushed organic garlic bought at Whole Foods)

3/4 cup water (I use vegetable-based beef stock for more flavour)
4 tbsp tomato paste
1 tbsp tamari (or low sodium soy sauce)
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp vegetarian Worcestershire sauce
Preheat oven to 325°F.

In a large mixing bowl mix dry ingredients. Mix the wet ingredients in a smaller mixing bowl, and whisk well until mixed.

Add the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients. Mix well, then knead for two minutes right in the large bowl. Don’t over-knead.

Form into a log (6-8 inches long), wrap tightly in foil, twisting ends. Bake for 90 minutes, flipping once. When finished baking, unwrap and leave out until cool. Wrap in foil or plastic wrap and refrigerate thoroughly.

Because the “log” is very dense, you can use a mandoline to slice it thinly to use on pizza. Thicker slices can be served on crackers with mustard or your favourite toppings, or it can be fried. You can also crumble it for use in lasagne or pasta, or in any recipe calling for ground sausage. You can alter the spices used to create new and interesting flavours of “sausage”.

1 comment:

  1. It's silly to think that making seitan is hard! Probably a myth concocted by the tofu people :) I have been experimenting with boiled seitan and I found that pieces about the size of your thumb turn to a nice nugget size with a good texture. Nutritional yeast and sage make em "chicken" flavored. Cheers!