So my wife decided to become vegetarian. For some time I was buying quorn, tofu, etc but to be honest they all suck. No real meat feeling, no bite, no meaty strands to chew on and pick out off your teeth afterwards. I did some research and apparently there is new thing on the market called seitan that supposed to be superior to quorn. All right I have to appologise to my US friend, it's been on a market few years longer but I understand that is new fad in UK. Now, what is seitan? (sounds like satan meat derivative :) which is not far away from God's way of telling us to eat what is nutritious instead of chipboard and grass...). Well, seitan is essentially gluten mixed with herbs, chickpea and spices to make it earthy, irony and essentially like a meat.
So, I went to amazon and bought Gluten (Vital Wheat Gluten) 1kg for £7.27 with delivery then Engevita Savoury Yeast Condiment With B12 125 g (Pack of 3) for £8.85 and Linwoods Organic Milled Flaxseed, 425g for £5.40, ok, there were also add-on items like Clearspring Organic Tamari Sauce 150ml £4.61 and Doves Farm Gram Flour, 1kg £4.67. That is a quite expensive all together but I really want to try this because I love and want to support my wife.
Now the recipe is quite straight forward but I want to add my twist.
- 1 1/2 cold vegetable broth (2 oxo vegie cubes will do)
- 4 cloves of garlic grated (well, Sainsburry's cloves are smaller but portent so take 2)
- 3 tbs tamarind
- 1 1/2 cups vital gluten flour
- 1/4 cup chickpea flour
- 1/4 cup Yeast Condiment
- 2 tbs ground flax seed
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp ground coriander
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp salt
I was also tempted to add soy sauce and mushroom ketchup as from my experience it gives best result when simulating any meat. I will probably do that next time as that is first I attempt to make seitan and I am not too sure how it will turn up.
Now, mix all dry ingredients together, then add broth, tamarind and soy sauce if you dare. You should get quite a hard dough so knead it for 3 or 4 min. Leave it to stand for 5 min then knead it some more for minute.
This is where I differ from any recipes on the market, I will take the dough and chop it into long thin strips then I will dry them in an oven 50C for 30-40 min. This should give meaty-like fibres. Then knead them together with a bit of water as necessary to make a stake.
Divide into 4 portions, flatten them to 1/4 inch then boil in veggie broth (oxo cubes) for 45 min.
Cool then use in any favourite beef recipe or simply as a beef stake.
Either way, I found “Leek and potato soup” quite satisfying and flavoursome.
It’s very easy to make and any variation to fulfil your own liking works really well.
He was a very special and sensitive creature and lead life of his own, fostering us on the side and taking a good care, when we needed him.
Once in a while, he would bring some small offerings (a mouse, a bird or a frog) to make sure we fed sufficiently.