There are certain food staples in any vegan diet. There are veggies, grains, beans and tofu. Not everyone in the non-vegan world knows about seitan. Basically, seitan is wheat protein. It looks and acts a lot more like meat than tofu and it tastes really good. I would say that it tastes like chicken, but I think that might be a bit too cliche.
There are basically two ways to make seitan: The hard way, where you make dough and kneed out all the starch before you simmer it in broth. Then there’s my way, which is to start with gluten flour and spices and then simmer it. I like my way.
I use this seitan in a ton of different recipes. It's a great substitute for any recipe that calls for chicken.
- Mix together all the dry ingredients.
- Mix together wet ingredients.
- Add wet ingredients slowly to dry ingredients, while mixing with a fork.
- Once dough is formed, kneaded for 2 minutes and let sit on the side for 5.
- Cut dough into 4 pieces.
- Put all broth ingredients into a pot and bring to boil.
- Lower flame, add dough and let cook for an hour.
- Remove from broth and let seitan drain in colander.
- Chop up whatever you'd like to use and freeze the rest for another time.
I’m usually the person that says throw everything together and just mix and everything will be fine. This time it won’t. Gluten flour is REALLY sticky. If you put everything in at once you risk not mixing everything evenly. The dough, before it’s boiled up, comes out like a rubber glob. Don’t worry about that.
The hardest part about this recipe is getting the gluten flour. It’s not sold everywhere. In Israel, I’ve found it in La Chef, in Jerusalem and LaGat BaOchel in Rat Gan. I’m sure that there are other baking specialty stores that carry it, but I don’t know where they are.
A lot of recipes that I’ve seen for seitan call for nutritional yeast. I don’t get nutritional yeast. For some reason people add it to all types of stuff to make them taste cheesy. It doesn’t taste cheesy to me, it just tastes bad. I keep a bag of it in the freezer and take it out every so often to make sure that I still don’t like it. So far, I’ve been very consistent. The nutritional yeast that I have was bought in America. Before I knew what it was I looked all over Israel for it, but couldn’t find it. Needless to say, I’ve stopped looking.
I cut my dough into 4 pieces because that’s about the amount that I need when I want to add it to a stir fry. It also makes it more manageable. Make sure to cut it before you cook it. Seitan is great in stir fries, but my favorite thing to make with seitan is schnitzel. The half of the batch that you see here is going to be fajitas.