Veggie Minced Lamb?
January 23, 2012 2:28 PM   Subscribe

[vegetarian-filter] What are some good fake-meat crumbles that don't taste like beef?

I grew up eating chicken, fish, and mutton, but not beef and pork. I became vegetarian a few years back. I've recently started craving some of the minced mutton dishes I used to eat as a kid, and have tried making them with packaged soy crumbles, but I think they're engineered to taste like beef, and the texture/taste puts me off. Are there any fake minced meat products I can get in the US that resemble mutton or chicken?
posted by redlines to Food & Drink (10 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
You can get dry TVP (textured vegetable protein, or isolated soy protein) and hydrate it with whatever broth or stock you like. It's also a totally lean, complete protein and cheap.
posted by cmoj at 2:35 PM on January 23, 2012 [1 favorite]

TVP would probably work. You'll have to season it yourself, in order to get the mutton flavour, as it is relatively flavourless on its own, but at least it won't end up tasting like beef.

You might also be able to get the right texture and flavour with seitan. I don't have a particular recipe to recommend, but I know that one of the vegetarian restaurants where I live uses seitan for their curry mutton dish (most of their other dishes use tempeh or TVP). I've had good results using minced seitan in shephard's pie, so I suspect that it will give you the mutton-y taste and texture you're looking for, as long as you prepare it correctly.
posted by asnider at 2:36 PM on January 23, 2012

I was going to recommend TVP. It has a texture very similar to ground meat, but virtually no taste. It is very inexpensive too, which is a bonus!
posted by apricot at 2:40 PM on January 23, 2012

You can get chicken flavored Quorn some places.
posted by fshgrl at 3:02 PM on January 23, 2012 [2 favorites]

I totally love the yves veggie ground chicken - it's way better than the beef flavour
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 3:09 PM on January 23, 2012

I prefer tempeh when I need something crumbly. It's not as processed and will take on whatever flavor you want to give it. I use it in many recipes that call for meat, most recently for enchiladas.
posted by perhapses at 3:22 PM on January 23, 2012 [1 favorite]

If you freeze and then thaw tofu, it'll have a different, chewier texture. I like to use it in spaghetti sauce, and the bonus is that you can season it according to your tastes.
posted by vivid postcard at 4:14 PM on January 23, 2012

i think the fresh tofu you can get at the asian market has the best texture and takes on any flavor you give it very well. ill never buy packaged tofu again
posted by udon at 4:16 PM on January 23, 2012

Quorn tastes like chicken to me -- or at least has the texture of chicken. Quorn Grounds is "beef-style" only in appearance, to my mind -- I don't get a beef flavor from it at all.
posted by vickyverky at 4:24 PM on January 23, 2012

Soy Curls are deliciously chicken-like, though you'd have to mince them yourself. They are also made of only soybeans (cooked, machine-processed and dried), so they don't have any weird ingredients.
posted by janerica at 4:45 PM on January 23, 2012

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