Posts Tagged ‘good things about seitan’

Recent Eats and Treats

Vietnamese Spring Rolls

I’ve been splurging a bit while food shopping lately. I’m working 3 day’s a week at a new local vegan restaurant my friends opened called Mundo Vegan and it’s giving me a few extra bucks to spend on things I normally wouldn’t while still putting some money into our savings. Its fun!

I tend to steer clear of the Whole Foods prepared food section, because of the priciness of it, but I glanced at it the other day and these Vietnamese Spring Rolls pulled me over. Rice paper wraps are one of my favorite things to eat! Filled with rice noodles and fresh herbs. These were so fresh and delicious and it came with a great peanut sauce to dip. I was hooked but unfortunately I went back a week later for some more and they didn’t have any. I’ll just have to make my own.

Splurge. #vegan #raw

Brads Raw Chips: Cheddar

Another splurge! I usually just splurge on special chocolate bars. Brads had a sampling at Fairway a few months ago and I fell in love these Cheddar chips. Buying a whole bag of them didn’t disappoint. I love the zing of flavor you get while eating them. I’ll definitely treat myself to these again sometime down the road.

Vegan Bake Sale at @mundovegannj today

Worldwide Vegan Bake Sale

It goes without saying that I purchased quite a few vegan baked treats at our local Worldwide Vegan Bake Sale. There was a container of treats that we took home and a whole bunch of them that didn’t even make it home like The Cinnamon Snail donated donuts. The 4 of us each had 1. My daughter might have eaten 2 of them.

Dinner: fried seitan salad with agave mustard dressing. Carrots, red pepper, tomatoes, slivered almonds. #vegan

Crispy Fried Seitan Salad

A healthier way to eat breaded and fried seitan. No? Preparing seitan this way has become a staple in out home. Its something that the kids will eat. Especially my son who has become super picky lately. My husband and I had a big salad with mesclun, tomatoes, carrots, red pepper and almonds with a few pieces of the seitan thrown on top. I topped mine with a home made Agave Mustard Dressing. My husband choose a balsamic dressing and just dipped his seitan in the Agave Mustard. Eating the seitan as a salad might be my new favorite thing and I’ll definitely be making it again very soon.

Food and Animals

Dinner: Seitan and Veg Fajitas w. Cashew Creme and Cilantro #vegan

Seitan and Pepper Fajitas 

I am still obsessively using my recipe for Soy-Lime Seitan Tacos. This time I made the soy-lime seitan adding peppers and mushrooms as sort of a fajita type dinner. Served them over toasted tortillas with some leftover Cashew-Lime Creme and lots of cilantro. We are not cilantro haters in this house. Served with a side of Rice and Beans and it was a perfect “new” meal for us. The kids even ate most parts of the meal.

Scone Monday. #vegan

Holiday Scones

A few of us had a day off of work/school last week for Holiday that everyone seems to hate now a days. I was happy to just have my family together for an extra day. I made us some chocolate chip scones for breakfast. I completely screwed the recipe up but they were still edible and good. I can’t imagine how much better they would have been if I didn’t leave out certain ingredients!

Happy pig!

for the animals sanctuary 

This weekend we visited a sanctuary in NJ called For The Animals. We met pigs, cows, chickens and goats that were once meant to be killed for food. The pig above loved laying in the sun having its belly rubbed by whoever. You could see the smile on her face.

The goats running toward us. #iheartgoats

I love goats and when we all entered the field they were in and the sanctuary owner called out for them they all came running. It was one of the happiest things I ever saw. If you knelt down they would come over and rub against you like a cat. These are all smart smart animals who want to be loved just like all of us. I don’t know how people can eat them.

Pepper Seitan {recipe}

Pepper Seitan

Pepper Seitan

A few weeks ago we received a few green peppers from the food co-op we recently joined. I never buy and/or use green peppers. They aren’t my favorite so I figure why bother wasting my time with them. As the week went buy I used up pretty much everything from the co-op except these stinkin’ peppers. I didn’t know what to do with them. Initially I was just going to make a veggie stir-fry with them. That same day while I was making a batch of my Basic Seitan an idea popped into my head. Pepper Seitan! A take on Pepper Steak, which was one of my Mom’s culinary specialties while I was growing up.

Now it’s been over 18 years since I’ve last had my mothers Pepper Steak. All I remembered is that it had peppers, steak and soy sauce in it and was served over white rice. I started doing some research online and couldn’t believe how varied everyone’s Pepper Steak recipes were! I didn’t remember tomatoes being in my mothers or that there was honey in it. Some recipes called for 1/2 cup of soy sauce while others called for 2 Tablespoons. Red wine vinegar? I eventually ventured downstairs to my parents apartment and quizzed my Mom on her Pepper Steak making skills. She didn’t know where her recipe was but she did confirm that her’s had tomatoes in it…but not red wine vinegar. I was on my own with this recipe and since the recipes I found online varied so much I figured I might as well just wing it.

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 Peppers, Onions, Garlic and Red Pepper Flakes

The results were wonderful. Definitely different from my Mom’s version but delicious all the same. My husband wants this to be a regular meal in our house.

Pepper Seitan

2 Tablespoons olive oil
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
2 green bell peppers, medium diced
pinch of red pepper flakes
3 seitan cutlets, thinly sliced (or 2 packages of store bought seitan, sliced)
1/2 of a 15 oz can of diced tomatoes w. juice
1 cup water
1 beefless bouillon cube
1/4 cup agave syrup
1/2 cup tamari (or soy sauce)
1 Tablespoon arrowroot powder (or cornstarch)
1 bunch of scallions, thinly sliced , approx. 3/4 cup

Heat oil in a medium or large saute pan over medium heat. Saute the garlic, onion, peppers and red pepper flakes until cooked through, about 8-10 minutes. Remove from pan. Return pan to heat and add the seitan and saute 3-4 minutes to brown. Add the tomatoes, water, beefless bouillon cube  and agave syrup. Stir until the bouillon cube dissolves. Add the pepper and onion mixture back to the pan and cook for 5 minutes. In a small bowl mix the tamari and arrowroot powder until dissolved. Stir the tamari mixture into the pan. Stir constantly until the sauce thickens, should be no more than 5 minutes. Remove from heat and serve over white or brown rice topped with sliced scallions.

Chickpea-Broccoli Coconut Curry (recipe)

Broccoli Chickpea Coconut Curry

Chickpea-Broccoli Coconut Curry

Curry! It has been AGES since I made any sort of curry/Indian food. I use to make it all the time. My pantry was stocked with all types of Indian ingredients and spices. Then Reno started eating “real food” and I stopped cooking a lot of foods that I liked to cook because I refuse to cook two dinners, one for us and one for her. Well I wanted a curry the other night. Knowing she wouldn’t eat the curry part of the meal I took out some of the broccoli before I added the curry spice. Unfortunately I forgot to take out some chickpeas for her as well. At least she ate the broccoli. Not pictured above was some seared seitan that I served on the side. Made mostly for Reno to have more protein with her meal but also for us seitan loving parents. This is a quick dinner to make on busy weeknights when you want something warm and comforting. I’m definitely adding it to our somewhat rotation of regular meals.

2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 small-medium onion, small diced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and minced
4 cups of broccoli florets
1 15 oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2 Tablespoons curry powder
1 chicken-less bouillon cube
1 15 oz can coconut milk
salt and pepper to taste

Heat olive oil, over medium-low heat, in a medium-large size saute pan. Add the onions, garlic and ginger and saute until the onions are translucent. Add the broccoli florets and continue cooking 8-10 minutes until the broccoli is cooked through but still has a crunch to it. Now add in the chickpeas, the curry powder and the chicken-less bouillon cube and cook for 3 minutes. Stir in the can of coconut milk. Cook the curry, stirring occasionally, for about 10 more minutes. The coconut milk is thick and will thicken some more as it cooks. If you want you can thin it out with 1/2 cup of water or more if necessary. I personally didn’t thicken mine but I like the thickness. Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve immediately over white rice.

I served ours with a side of seared seitan which isn’t pictured above.

Seitan and Recipes

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Seitan Sauteed with Garlic

I get weird sometimes about sharing recipes. Sometimes I’m greedy and just want to keep them to myself, like my brownie recipe, which on occasion I share with people close to me and I’m getting closer to being comfortable sharing on here. Most of the time I just get anxious that no one will like it, it won’t come out the same way for you as it does for me, I can always improve on it so I’ll just wait until then, blah blah blah. The one recipe I’ve been saying over and over again that I’m “going to post on my blog real soon” is my seitan recipe. Its falls under the category of “I can always improve on it so I’ll just wait until then”. I finally realized the other day that I’ve been making it the same way for months now and I’ve served it to a lot of people over that time. Most of those people are meat eaters and they have all loved it. So I’m finally going to share it today although I think I’ll need a few drops of Rescue Remedy to calm my nerves before I do.

Before cooking

Before simmering (these pictures aren’t pretty to look at)  :)

I love making my own seitan for a few reasons: it’s cheap, it’s easy, I don’t like any of the brands that I can buy in the stores by me and I can flavor it however I want.  What I don’t/didn’t like about making it is the 5 or so minutes that is needed to knead the seitan. You see I broke my hand about 6 years ago and kneading anything still KILLS it. On really cold winter days my right hand is basically useless. I knead away though each and every time until I can’t take it anymore. The last time I made the seitan it was a chilly day, my hand wasn’t cooperating and I FINALLY thought to just let my KitchenAid stand mixer do all the work for me. Sweet jesus that machine just made my life a whole lot easier and less painful! Why I didn’t think of it before is beyond me. So you can make this recipe either way…with your own two hands or with the help of your KitchenAid.

Simmered/Sliced Seitan

Basic Seitan
makes 8-9 thick cutlets

Broth

16 cups water
2 tablespoons concentrated broth (I use Better Than Bouillon’s non chicken base) or 3 bouillon cubes
1/4 cup tamari
3 bay leaves

Seitan

3 cups vital wheat gluten
1/3 cup nutritional yeast
2 tablespoons cumin
1 tablespoon garlic powder

1 cup cold water
1/2 cup tamari
1/2 cup unsweetened non dairy milk
2 tablespoons olive oil

For the broth: add all the ingredients to a large pot with a lid. (any pot that you can cook pasta/soup in is perfect). Leave it be until the seitan is ready to be added.

For the seitan: In a large mixing bowl add the vital wheat gluten, nutritional yeast, cumin and garlic powder and stir to combine. In a medium size bowl whisk together the cold water, tamari, unsweetened non dairy milk and olive oil until well mixed.  Add the liquid to the dry ingredients and mix. Here is where you either get your hands dirty or throw in in your KitchenAid stand mixer if you have one. Knead for about 5 minutes until you have a giant, stretchy ball of gluten in your hands (mixer). With your hands or kitchen knife divide the dough into 8-9 pieces and stretch those pieces out a bit to form a cutlet shape. Once all the seitan cutlets are formed slip them into the pot and turn the heat onto high. Once the broth starts to boil immediately lower to a simmer and cover the pot leaving the lid slightly off so some steam can escape. Simmer the seitan for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes turn off the heat, fully cover the pot and let sit for at least 20-30 minutes.

Remove the seitan to a lidded container and add enough of the cooking broth to cover it  and store it in the fridge until ready to use.

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Seitan Wrap w. Cashew Dill Mayo

My favorite ways to use this seitan is to thinly slice it and saute it in olive oil with a lot of garlic for Seitan Wraps or i’ll cut it into thicker strips to make seitan finger type meals like my Pecan Crusted Seitan or Beer Battered Seitan. I’ll also marinate thick slices in BBQ sauce and grill it either outside on the grill or inside on a grill pan for a Seitan Rib dinner.

Now like I said this recipe falls under the “I can always improve this recipe…” If I ever do improve upon it I promise to share it. :)

veganmofo2011