My husband grew up in the Dominican Republic at a Seventh Day Adventist College campus (his parents are professors) with a large vegetarian population. One of the things he ate often was called Carne Veggie, what we refer to here as Seitan, or “wheat meat.” Seitan is a high protein meat substitute made from the gluten in wheat—it clocks in at about 21 grams of protein per 90 gram serving, about the same as chicken. Before we had the convenience of Bob’s Red Mill Vital Wheat Gluten, people would “wash” flour until they were left with just the gluten—Irving remembers watching his mom and her friends making huge batches! They would start by mixing up a dough of water and wheat flour, and once they had a dough they would rinse the starch away while continually kneading. I’m so thankful to be able to purchase my gluten pre-extracted…it saves so much time and makes making homemade seitan a cinch!
I started making my own seitan over the summer—I’m kind of skeeved out by the prepackaged stuff at the grocery store, although I’ve never tasted it. There’s just something about a vaccum pack of seitan with extra preservatives that doesn’t seem appetizing to me. Making it myself allows me to control all of the ingredients, and know what I am eating. I’ve tried several recipes, and this version here is from Bob’s Red Mill, with a few Sarah tweaks. If you have any timid eaters in your family, you could compare seitan to the classic Chicken and Dumplings that so many of us grew up with…similar concept, different texture! Hope you give this a try…its fairly easy, and yields A LOT! This should make the equivalent of about 4-6 of the packaged seitan you’ll see in the grocery store.
Carne Veggie (aka Seitan)
2 cups Water
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp Garlic Powder
1 tsp Onion Powder
1 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp Sage
2 cups gluten flour
2 T Aminos/Soy Sauce
2 T Molasses
1 T Dijon Mustard
6 cups Water
Bring to a boil the water for the broth, molasses, mustard, and soy sauce in a large pot.
Mix together the gluten flour, baking powder, and spices in a small bowl. Add water to mixture and stir into a sponge-like dough. This should not be excessively wet. Knead dough a minute to make dough tougher and more elastic.
Cut into thin slices (I usually cut my ball of dough into two, and then slice-slices WILL stick if you set them on top of each other) and place into boiling broth.
Cook in broth for about 1 hour, lowering heat as needed.
Drain and use seitan for Seitan Scallopini, a stir-fry, sandwiches, stews and more.
Keep the rest of the seitan in the fridge, tightly sealed, for a few days, or freeze for later use.