This was my first time making seitan. Seitan is intimidating. I always thought it sounded like something my parents call people when they are upset and assumed it was really difficult/lengthy to make, but no, it's actually pretty easy.
Seitan isn't for everyone. Some people can't stand the texture at all, or the fact that -- heck -- it's not meat, duh. And it's DEFINITELY not for gluten-intolerant/free people, because it is practically a ball of gluten.
But if you are inclined to try this, it makes 11 "strips" and contains 5 g protein per strip, so why not?
As a note, I don't eat a lot of this fake meat stuff, but once in a while, it's actually pretty good in itself without thinking about what I'm substituting.
Homemade Chik'n Seitan
inspired by the recipe on the back of the Bob's Red Mill package and conglomerate of online resources
makes about 11 "strips"; ~5 min prep, ~60 min cooking
- for the seitan base
1/2 cup of vital wheat gluten flour (I used Bob's Red Mill)
1/2 cup water
- for the "flavoring"
1.5 cups of water
1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes
2 tablespoons of Braggs liquid aminos (or low-sodium soy sauce)
1 heaping teaspoon onion powder or dried chopped onion
1/2 teaspoon of powdered rubbed sage
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1) Mix vital wheat gluten with water in a mixing bowl and stir. It should form a ball almost immediately. If you sniff this ball, you might be put off by the flour-y smell, so don't. Lay the ball out on a surface and knead for a minute or two. The more you knead, the "chewier" it will be. Then, you can cut it into whatever shape you want -- I did strips.
2) Get all the other ingredients in a medium-sized pot and bring to a boil.
3) Add the seitan and reduce to a simmer. When I did this, the kitchen smelled like chicken pot pie, which is a good sign, right?
Stir every 10 minutes or so and keep it going until the water is all gone... this might take an hour. If it's been a long time and there's still water, you can simply strain it out.
4) Remove seitan when cooled. You probably want to squeeze the water out of the pieces by using the back of your spoon against the pot, or whatever other method you want to devise.
I haven't quite figured out what I want to do with these, besides eating them alone or with salads. I'm pretty sure I can cook with these to give them some more color or something.
As for the taste, I'd say it's reminiscent of chicken. The texture is a little rubbery, but I figure with seitan, that is to be expected. Perhaps I can experiment with the length of kneading a bit more. This was so easy to put together that I definitely think I should have tried this sooner.
Now on to the "beef" variety...