Gluten avoiders, this post is not for you.
Seitan (pronounced SAY-tahn), is a vegan meat substitute made from vital wheat gluten. Sometimes called ‘wheat meat’, it has a dense, chewy texture that’s surprisingly similar to meat. Plus, seitan is a protein rockstar at 75g of protein per 100g (chicken breast is 31g).
Traditionally, wheat gluten has been popular in China, Japan, and other Eastern and Southeastern Asian countries. Now, as vegetarian and vegan diets become more popular in the west, so too does seitan. And for good reason, seitan is a very versatile protein.
Seitan can take on whatever flavour you want – the only limit is your imagination! Want to make a chicken noodle style soup using seitan? Use a vegetarian chicken flavoured broth and some classic herbs in your seitan. Want a fishier feeling? Add seaweed into the broth. There are so many options!
This is a basic seitan recipe. To be honest, I would not normally just eat it after this round of cooking – although, you definitely can! Instead I add it to a stir fry, batter+bake+sauce for hot wing inspired seitan, add it to stew, or grill it for a sandwich. (Try replacing the vegan chicken in this peanut sauce stir fry with seitan!)
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- 2 cups Vital Wheat Gluten
- 1 tsp Onion Powder
- 1 tsp Garlic Powder
- 1 Tbsp Soy Sauce
- 1 tsp Molasses
- 2 cups Water
- 3 Cups Vegetable Broth
- 3 Cups Water
- 2 Tbsp Soy Sauce
- Mix the gluten, onion powder, and garlic powder in one bowl. In another bowl, mix 1 Tbsp of soy sauce, the molasses, and water to create a wet mix.
- Incorporate the wet mix into the dry mix, creating a dough that is not too wet. Knead the dough for a minute or two, to make it tougher and more elastic. Separate the dough into 4 and flatten the pieces to 3/4 inch thickness. Let them sit for 15 minutes.
- Bring the broth, water and soy sauce to a boil in a large pot. The dough will expand, so if necessary, add more water or broth.
- Lower the temperature as necessary and simmer covered for at least 1 hour.
- Drain them from the water and store in the fridge. You can also freeze for later use.
Now you have seitan that can be cooked up into many different recipes. Enjoy!