What is your favorite recipe for making seitan (from scratch)?
February 16, 2013 4:02 PM   Subscribe

I have finally made seitan from scratch (rather than just buying Field Roast), using one of the baked seitan methods. It was GREAT and astoundingly easy! I am now contemplating the many, many flavor profile possibilities that seitan has to offer. Do you have a special spice mix, marinade or preparation method? I'm all ears! (Er, eyes, I guess, since this is a text-based medium.)
posted by rednikki to Food & Drink (9 answers total) 39 users marked this as a favorite
Sorry for lack of links, I'm on the run, but wanted to offer the Veganomicon recipe. It's flexible and totally reliable. I keep mine fairly simple so I can cook with it over many meals.

I make my dough in the food processor to improve consistency, knead the dough for a while, cut pieces with a sharp knife instead of by hand. The trick for me is starting with cold cooking liquid and then letting the seitan sit in the cooking broth until cooled afterward.

Love making my own seitan! Yum!
posted by mamabear at 4:58 PM on February 16, 2013

I've made it a few times and this has been the easiest and tastiest: http://www.yourveganmom.com/your_vegan_mom/2008/05/southern-style-seitan-cutlets.html. The directions for wrapping each cutlet in foil and steaming are more detailed here: http://www.yourveganmom.com/your_vegan_mom/2009/08/savory-sauce-and-seitan-cutlets.html

I stir together 1/2 c fork-mashed beans (usually pinto or navy) from a can with 1/2 c liquid (1/2 from can and 1/2 water) with 1 c gluten and a little less than a t of poultry seasoning (like McCormick's because it makes me think of stuffing) and 2 T of nutritional yeast. Pat 6 pieces into a cutlet shape and place each on a piece of foil and fold the foil once in half over the cutlet before steaming for 20-30 minutes (place in metal steamer basket). I then put the pieces in a ziploc in the fridge and grab one when I want.

The beans do increase the carbs if that concerns you. I've considered trying to make it this way without the beans but haven't yet. This isn't particularly a different flavor profile as you can add any seasoning instead of the poultry seasoning. I like soy sauce too with some ginger and garlic.
posted by RoadScholar at 5:04 PM on February 16, 2013 [1 favorite]

I've had good success with moist methods, vs roasting or baking. You can slip patties of seitan into simmering water/broth and pull them out when they float on top. Steaming is also good. I've done steamed "cutlets" in foil packets. Also "sausages" rolled up in tin foil are good too.

As for seasonings, really anything goes. I like a hefty amount of nutritional yeast, and for liquid I'll do half soy sauce half water or broth. As for texture, I think it's good if you have a bit of something else in the mix, it'll keep the gluten from knotting up too tightly. Mashed beans, seeds/flaxmeal can work. Cumin seeds or fresh herbs are good too.

I've also made a Thanksgiving turkey analogue a few times with cornbread stuffing. I've learned its best to steam it in a tinfoil log, then brush a bit of butter/olive oil to get it brown in the oven for just a few minutes on high. All roasting makes it too tough.
posted by fontophilic at 5:21 PM on February 16, 2013

Steamed seitan RULES! I've had the most luck with incorporating a lot of seasoning in the actual seitan itself, rather than relying on the cooking liquid. You pretty much can't go wrong with lotsa nutritional years, garlic powder, smoked paprika, etc.
posted by julthumbscrew at 5:36 PM on February 16, 2013

I've had great success with the roasting-in-foil method that turns out a thick deli-style log. When you roast it in foil you get this chewy thin crust on the outside of the log, and that varies the texture just a bit, unlike the homogeneity of texture that I've gotten when steaming or boiling.

recipe I use: http://yeahthatveganshit.blogspot.com/2007/04/infamous-seitan-recipe-o-greatness.html
posted by celare at 7:45 PM on February 16, 2013

I haven't made it in years, but when I was cooking vegan, Julie Hasson's seitan sausage recipe (video) was my go-to. Wrapped in foil and steamed. It seemed to spawn a lot of variations, like this one from the PPK.

God, but I do love apple-sage Field Roast sausages, though.
posted by mumkin at 9:38 PM on February 16, 2013 [1 favorite]

Another vote for the veganomicon basic recipe - it's great, really easy, and can be doubled to produce seitan for several dinners at once.

I'd also add Viva Vegan - both for the white seitan it uses as a chicken substitute, and for it's awesome Chorizo Spicy Seitan.
posted by Wylla at 1:17 AM on February 17, 2013

Also just noticed that the veganomicon chickpea cutlets recipe is online - these are basically seitan with incorporated mashed chickpeas. Note that these have sausage-y spices, but that that's totally not mandatory - the vital wheat gluten + chickpeas idea will work in the recipe even if you vary the spices to fit what you're making the seitan for.
posted by Wylla at 1:50 AM on February 17, 2013 [1 favorite]

Seconding Julie Hassan's recipe! I really like the Chinese 5-Spice seitan from Vegan Eats World by Terry Hope Romero recently, though.
posted by Kitteh at 3:55 PM on February 19, 2013

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