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PumpkinGuy
Jun 29th, 2005, 10:56 PM
I tried to make my own seiten last night and it was a total disaster! I made the dough all right and soaked it for 20 minutes in warm water. So far so good. Then I proceeded to rinse the starch out and slowly it began to disintegrate until it was a gooey mess. I though if I cooked it in stock it would be ok but I ended up with dumplings!

I'm bummed. I spent over 2 hrs making dumplings.

Can anyone help me out.. Possibly what went wrong, experiences, suggestions??? Does anyone even like seiten?

Thanks!

tasha
Jun 30th, 2005, 01:56 AM
I love seitan. I have my own version of it, not sure if it is technically seitan, but it tastes the same to me--if not better. And it is EASY to do! ;)
This makes "quite" a bit of seitan, so you can cut all of the ingrediants in half if you like.

Gluten steak (seitan)
3 cups gluten flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
4 tbsp. brewer’s yeast
¾ tsp. poultry seasoning (or a blend of sage, rosemary, & thyme)
¼ soya sauce
3 cups water

Broth
12 cups water
½ cup soya sauce
3 tbsp. oil
4 tbsp. poultry seasoning (or a blend of sage, rosemary, & thyme)
1 tbsp. salt
4 onions

Mix all gluten steak ingredients. It works best using your hands.
Let stand for 20 minutes.
Mix all broth ingredients into large pot. Bring to a boil.
While broth is heating up, knead wheat steak ingredients again, then mould into long roll.
Slice roll into ¼” pieces. (Or slice and roll into small “wheat balls”)
Place into boiling broth, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 1 hour.

*it expands quite a bit in pot!
*these do look like dumplings at first, but let'em sit for a bit--they will slice nicely.
*store in the broth in fridge.

I love the texture and usually fry slices with soy sauce and make yummy sandwiches.

Geoff
Jun 30th, 2005, 05:20 AM
There's a little book called, I think, 'The Gentle Persuasion Cookbook' by Brook Katz which has a few seitan recipies, which have always worked for me. :)

PumpkinGuy
Jun 30th, 2005, 07:35 PM
Thanks for the replies. I can't wait to try this again!

DianeVegan
Jul 1st, 2005, 03:44 AM
When I have time this weekend I'll find the link I use for my seitan. I think it's much more economical and less wasteful (water) to use gluten instead of flour. If you had rinsed the messy dough you had in the water many more times, it would have firmed up. This method really wastes water. When using the method with gluten, you must mix it rather quickly and too much liquid is better than too little or you will have some dense, dry, chewy parts.

I have tried every wrong way to make seitan. I now make about 10 pounds every 6-8 weeks and freeze it. It's definitely worth your while to learn how to make it well (especially if you have omnivores to feed ;) )

Actually, I think the above recipe is the same one I use!! The brewer's yeast is the same as nutritional yeast. Less of the whole wheat flour will give it a firmer texture. I sometimes use half whole wheat and half white flour, again less giving a firmer texture. The most important part is to mix all the dry thoroughly before adding the wet, then mixing the liquid first with a spoon, but finishing with your hands, almost like kneading bread, but not as long.

If you used too much liquid, it will leak out while the dough is resting. If you used too little, the dough will be lumpy and hard in spots. You can't add more liquid at this point but it is usually okay to use.

Good luck, and don't give up until you get it right :)

PumpkinGuy
Jul 1st, 2005, 07:48 PM
Thanks for the advice. The problem I had with my messy mixture was that it just get washing down the drain. I could not separate what was glutenous dough and what was liquid. I was trying to kneed it and it wasn't coming together.

I definately want to have seiten on hand in my freezer. It's not the first time that I something didn't come out right the first time I tried to make it and I know it won't be the last. My kitchen just had sticky dough on everything and it was drying like concrete. I was picking it off my hands for days!

I also had tried to use 100% wheat flour and I'm going to try the mixture with glutenous flour next time.

Thanks everyone!

acousticCORE123
Jul 4th, 2005, 02:10 AM
Bob's red Mill brand flours makes a vital wheat gluten....does anyone know if this ( or any other vital wheat gluten flours) needs to be rinsed when trying to make seitan?

I am a lazy boy :D , I like seitan but would really like to eliminate or avoid the whole knead/re-knead & rinse process from making seitan

tasha
Jul 4th, 2005, 07:00 AM
I obviously have a different recipe for seitan as I don't have to rinse anything and someone else asked about seitan stating they had to rinse! (I too am lazy, and that just sounds annoying!)

Hmmmm....mine tastes the same as the stuff I get in restaurants!! :confused:

My recipe is in the post "help! my seitan is a disaster". I'll put it in the recipe section as well ;)

There is kneading involved....but it only takes a sec!

tasha
Jul 4th, 2005, 07:08 AM
This makes "quite" a bit of seitan, so you can cut all of the ingrediants in half if you like.

Wheat beef (seitan)
3 cups gluten flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
4 tbsp. brewer’s yeast
¾ tsp. poultry seasoning (or a blend of sage, rosemary, & thyme)
¼ soya sauce
3 cups water

Broth
12 cups water
½ cup soya sauce
3 tbsp. oil
4 tbsp. poultry seasoning (or a blend of sage, rosemary, & thyme)
1 tbsp. salt
4 onions

Mix all wheat beef ingredients. It works best using your hands.
Let stand for 20 minutes.
Mix all broth ingredients into large pot. Bring to a boil.
While broth is heating up, knead wheat beef ingredients again, then mould into long roll.
Slice roll into ¼” pieces. (Or slice and roll into small “wheat balls”)
Place into boiling broth, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 1 hour.

*it expands quite a bit in pot!
*these do look like dumplings at first, but let'em sit for a bit--they will slice nicely.
*store in the broth in fridge.

I love the texture and usually fry slices with soy sauce and make yummy sandwiches.

acousticCORE123
Jul 4th, 2005, 07:13 AM
(I too am lazy, and that just sounds annoying!)

I am lazy as well :D ....I tell you, I am OBSESSED with making seitan!!!! It's 1 am and I just got done making some "meat" balls. I cant get it to be as rubbery as the stuff I get in stores, so I think I will try again another time. Maybe I will use another type of wheat flour

DianeVegan
Jul 5th, 2005, 07:20 AM
Gluten does not need to be rinsed. When making seitan out of whole wheat flour, there is a LOT of rinsing involved. If you can find a good bulk section in a healthfood store you may be lucky enough to find much cheaper gluten than the brand you mentioned.

DianeVegan
Jul 5th, 2005, 07:22 AM
You can also freeze any leftover, either in a marinade, broth, or just wrapped in plastic. I've got about 10 pounds in my freezer right now.....

tasha
Jul 5th, 2005, 07:23 AM
You can also freeze any leftover, either in a marinade, broth, or just wrapped in plastic. I've got about 10 pounds in my freezer right now.....

That is definitly good news! How long can it be frozen and what is the best way (in the broth or wrapped alone)?

DianeVegan
Jul 5th, 2005, 07:54 AM
Mine never lasts more than 2 months, however, I have read that it can be frozen for 6 months. I make big "logs" of it, wrap several times in plastic, and freeze. I've never frozen it in broth. I have frozen it in marinade, either in a plastic container, or wrapped in plastic AFTER having marinated it overnight (saves room in the freezer this way). The taste and texture is not affected by freezing. By the way, if you marinate it then slice first as a big piece won't absorb the flavor as well.

acousticCORE123
Jul 6th, 2005, 04:15 AM
Ok, i tried it again, and boiled "steaks" for about an hour but when i tried taking one out it broke apart.....should i leave it in for longer than that? The "steaks" i made were still kind-a bready and i used the vital wheat gluten flour (Bob's red mill--thats all the A&P had)

DianeVegan
Jul 7th, 2005, 03:45 AM
I leave the gluten in "loaves" when I simmer (not boil) it, about 3" by 6" and they have not fallen apart. Perhaps your seitan has too much liquid in it before adding to the stock. Did you let it rest for 15 minutes first? This is an important step. You can decrease the amount of flour in the recipe to make it more dense. Another idea is to wrap/roll the loaves or cylinders of gluten in cheese cloth and tie the ends with twine. They will keep a cylindrical shape that can then be sliced into medallions.

Good luck.

acousticCORE123
Jul 7th, 2005, 04:38 PM
Hmmm....good idea using the cheese cloth! I think my mixture had too much flour in it, that might be what made it bready, the next time around I will see what happens when I reduce this ingredient.

BTW, the seitan I made that was bready in actuality wasn't as bready as I thought. After I simmered it, I baked pieces in the oven with BBQ sauce and it came out pretty good....the texture even improved a little.

DianeVegan
Jul 8th, 2005, 12:46 PM
Eating it just after simmering is not the best taste and texture. Many times I marinated mine then dredge in a mixture of flour and ground nuts with herbs (for instance - walnuts, rosemary, salt and pepper) then pan fry in oil. This certainly changes the texture as compared to baking or broiling.

Glad your recipe improved!

acousticCORE123
Jul 9th, 2005, 10:50 PM
Many times I marinated mine then dredge in a mixture of flour and ground nuts with herbs (for instance - walnuts, rosemary, salt and pepper)

Dianecrna, do you mix any herbs & spices into the seitan dough or the broth?

DianeVegan
Jul 10th, 2005, 05:05 AM
When I am making "chicken" style seitan I will usually mix ground sage, rosemary and thyme into the dry mix first. I am away from my computer at the moment but I will try to find the recipe I first started using and put the link here. I also add these herbs, onion, shoyu or braggs sauce and stock or broth to the pot to simmer. Then I use some of this "plain" and I marinate others. I will type in the recipes I use for marinade when I get home. I use two from the Candle Cafe restaurant cookbook.

I just noticed that you're from Jersey! Have you been to the Candle 79 restaurant yet? I just went again with my mother this week and had an unbelievable meal. I always get new ideas for meals when I go there. They just started making their own ice cream and the waiter we had was nice enough to share the ingredients list with us. They are using soy milk, coconut milk, sweetener and fruit - I went home the next night, tried my best to figure out the ratio, used some fresh-picked strawberries and........wow, the best vegan ice cream I've had.

Anyway, they have been my inspiration for seitan. They also do some great things with tempeh but I'm not yet to their level on that one.

Now I'm hungry. :)

acousticCORE123
Jul 10th, 2005, 10:14 PM
I just noticed that you're from Jersey! Have you been to the Candle 79 restaurant yet?

I have not been to Candle 79 yet...But now I will give it a try. I frequent this one place in NYC called Red Bamboo (west 4th st & 6th ave ... www.redbamboo-nyc.com) that gives me pretty good meal ideas, so I am always up for a new place to get my creative cooking juices flowing.

I am also a fairly new vegan. The only 2 things I am really having trouble with are chicken and fish...well, not so much the fish, but chicken is the hardest for me to resist. :( So, I have become obsessed with making seitan that will calm the cravings :D ...so far, everytime I get one of those intense cravings I just toss a couple of pieces of seitan in the oven and drown them in spicy BBQ sauce (I can see how this makes you hungry). This tends to work really well.

What I noticed about the seitan I have been making recently is that if its not drowned in BBQ sauce or a a store-bought quick marinade it tends to taste extremely wheaty--maybe thats just my not-so-good cooking skills. But last night I made a small batch of seitan and in the dry mix I put thyme, sage, lemon pepper, and garlic powder. I simmered it in a vegan "chicken" broth with a minced onion, 3 cloves of garlic, (any my secret ingredient ;) ) a pinch of cinnamon...I wanted to use this batch to make something very spicy and I usually mix cinnamon with hot sauce so I figured I would try flavoring the seitan with the cinnamon instead. I havent tried it yet, but it smells good (or "interesting" depending on who you ask in the house :p )

DianeVegan
Jul 11th, 2005, 03:39 PM
When I get home I will definitely post my recipes for you. I agree about the wheaty taste - it's the reason I never eat store bought seitan. The seitan I make reminds you of those chicken patties served in school cafeterias, just with ALL filler and no meat! And no wheaty taste. The key is simmering in a broth and then either marinating and/or pan-frying it.

Okay, now I'm hungry again!

I haven't tried Red Bamboo but did recently eat at Zen Palate in Midtown for lunch. I wasn't overly impressed. Thanks for the link.

Tanya71
Jul 11th, 2005, 03:40 PM
Is setian a good protein source?

acousticCORE123
Jul 11th, 2005, 04:44 PM
I remember those patties....thats pretty impressive!!! I would def like to know your seitan recipe.

After simmering my seitan, I keep it in the broth so it wont dry out...but I dont think that's the type of marinating you are talking about. Do you think it has to remain submerged in the broth or is it possible to season/marinate/etc and freeze without the broth?

DianeVegan
Jul 13th, 2005, 03:15 PM
I think it's best to freeze it dry, double wrapped in plastic in "logs" then thaw and marinate or whatever. Here is my recipe:

CHICKEN-STYLE SEITAN

3 cups vital gluten flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup unbleached flour
3 tablespoons poultry seasoning (equal parts ground sage, ground rosemary and thyme)
3 tablespoons nutritional yeast
3 1/3 cups hot water
1/4 cup shoyu or tamari or soy or Braggs liquid aminos

Mix dry ingredients thoroughly. Mix water and shoyu together then add to the dry ingredients. Stir quickly and thoroughly, then knead with your hands until liquid is totally incorporated (about 30 seconds). Form these into cylinders or logs. You may also wrap them in cheese cloth to hold the shape and tie with twine (leave some room for expansion). Let rest for 15 to 30 minutes - some liquid may drain out. Meanwhile, prepare broth.

12 cups water
3 tablespoons poultry seasoning
4 tablespoons nutritional yeast
1/2 cup shoyu or tamari or braggs
1 large onion, sliced
3 bay leaves

Mix all and bring to a boil. Add seitan, bring to a simmer, cover and simmer for 60 to 90 minutes depending on the size of your pieces.

Alternatively, you can make these into one or two cylinders, then slice into "steaks" before adding to the broth. The yield would be about 18 to 24 steaks.

This recipe was adapted from veganmania.com (http://www.veganmania.com)