This recipe may not be as photogenic as others, but it packs a bigger punch in that it will provide you with weeks worth of inexpensive, tasty meat substitute that is over 75% protein…yep, you read that right, over 75% protein. It has more protein per 100g than chicken and beef and with zero cholesterol you really can’t go wrong. The photo above is of a spicy chili made using the wheat meat minced and the photo below is of a teriyaki stir-fry made using the home-made strips of wheat meat (can be baked or fried).
So, it’s pretty basic in that you mix the dry ingredients in a bowl and the wet ingredients in a jug and pour the wet into the dry and kneed until you form a sort of dough. It will be springy to touch and should not be too sticky.
Let it rest while you prepare the broth that it will cook in. The broth looks like old dish water but it’s actually vegan stock, onion, soy sauce, garlic and ginger – it smells lovely!
Once the broth is boiling reduce the heat and cut the wheat meat into thick chunky slices for easier handling when you then cut it into smaller strips, dropping them into the broth as you go. Use a big pair of scissors for this as the wheat meat slices will stick together if you cut them on the chopping board, plus it’s just quicker.
At this point bring the heat back up but do not let it boil, just bring it to a simmer and simmer for about 30 minutes. If, by accident, it gets to a boil get it off the heat straight away as the boiling of the wheat meat makes it fall apart and become just mushy mush. How do I know this you ask? Yep, I turned away for a minute and when I turned back it was bubbling away and when I tried to take the wheat meat strips out at the end of cooking they were not really formed. So, that’s one thing I won’t be doing again!
Make sure it is a big pot you use as the wheat meat at least doubles in size when cooking in the broth. Gently stir it occasionally during the half hour. Once it is cooked scoop it out into colanders and sieves and let it drain and cool (although you’ll read on the Internet that you should leave it in the broth to cool but I honestly don’t even know how long that would take with such a big pot and I have not found that it is necessary).
Once cooled give the wheat meat a squeeze to get some of the liquid out by pressing down on the the wheat meat slices in the colander or sieve to drain. What you have then is the finished seitan/wheat meat ready to cook as it is or to add more flavour and then cook.
- Dry Ingredients
- 500g vital wheat gluten
- 1 Tbsp garlic powder
- 1 Tbsp onion powder
- 1 Tbsp coriander
- 1½ tsp smoked paprika
- ½ tsp cayenne powder
- 1 tsp cumin
- 8 Tbs pea protein flour (or besan/chickpea flour if you can't find pea protein flour)
- 4 Tbs nutritional yeast flakes
- Wet Ingredients
- 2 Tbsp tomato puree
- 2 dashes of Worcestershire sauce
- 2 Tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tsp of liquid smoke
- ⅓ cup of bran oil
- 2 cups vegan stock
- For the broth
- 3 beef stock cubes
- 1 tsp liquid smoke
- 2 dashes of Worcestershire Sauce
- 1 cup soy sauce
- 1 onion chopped in ¼
- 2 inches of ginger sliced thinly
- 3 cloves of garlic sliced
- Big pot of water (at least 3 litres)
- To make the broth
- Make the broth by adding all broth ingredients to the big pot of water, bring to the boil and then reduce to a simmer.
- To make the Seitan
- Mix all dry ingredients in a large bowl, ensuring fully mixed and make a well in the middle
- Mix all wet ingredients in a jug, again ensuring well incorporated, and pour into the well in the middle of the dry ingredients
- Mix the wet and dry ingredients together and kneed for a couple of minutes forming a dough
- Cut the dough into thick slice/chunks then using scissors as in the photo above, cut thinner strips of dough dropping them into the simmering broth.
- Let simmer for 30 minutes, making sure not to allow the broth to come to a boil as it will make the dough spongy and it will disintegrate
- Scoop the seitan into colanders and sieves and allow it to cool
- Squeeze excess liquid out of the seitan by pushing down on the seitan while in the sieve/colander
- Separate into portion sizes that suit your family and freeze until you require them
- To use in a meal
- Once defrosted, squeeze out further liquid by patting with kitchen roll
- Seitan can be fried - lightly fry in a pan with a little oil, then add to whatever sauce you are using in your meal e.g a teriyaki sauce or a gravy in a sloppy Joe
- Seitan can be minced - mince in a veggie chopper and use as you would any mince. Add garlic, onion and oil to a pan and add the minced seitan and cook for a few minutes (it is technically cooked when it was boiled initially, this is just to give it more of a mince flavour) adding any spices or herbs you normally would. Use in spaghetti bolognese, chili, mince pies and pasties, lasagna, shepherd's pie, burritos...the list can go on.
- Seitan can be baked - rub the wheat meat with a little oil and add any flavouring you'd like such as a a Cajun spice mix. With the oven on 180 degrees cook for 15-20 minutes keeping an eye on it that it doesn't get too dry.
- It does take a little time to make this recipe but you will be making enough for between 15-20 portions depending on how much you divide the final amount. The cook time is for making the initial batch of wheat meat.
I really do recommend having a go at this recipe, opening the freezer and grabbing a bag of sliced wheat-meat for a stir-fry makes life easy, and it is so inexpensive compared to the shop bought equivalent. If I’ve missed anything or you have any questions about this recipe please leave a question in the comments.