melonblossom (melonblossom) wrote in vegancooking,

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"Beef" Stew with Seitan

Seitan (From Garden of Vegan)

1 c. instant gluten flour
1 c. water
1/2 tsp. Braggs
6 c. vegetable stock [I used vegetable bouillion, plus some chunks of garlic and a stalk of fresh rosemary. Throw in whatever you think would make it tasty!]

In a large bowl, stir together the flour, water, and Braggs. Mix quickly with your hands to avoid lumps. Knead gently until combined and slice into bite-sized chunks or strips, remembering that the Seitan will expand a little [note: more than you think, but you can always cut it up if it gets too big] when you cook it. In a large pot over high heat, bring vegetable stock to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, add gluten pieces, and simmer for 30-45 minutes. Remove with slotted spoon and use accordingly. Makes about 3 cups.

Pretty seitan, all ready to go into some...

Beef Stew (adapted from Garden of Vegan's "Hungry Person Stew")

Medium onion
Few stalks celery
Oil for frying
A few carrots
1-2 large potatoes
2 c. veggie stock
Small can tomato paste
Thyme, red pepper flakes, and black pepper
Any fresh herbs you have, if desired
A few mushrooms
1 cup seitan, chopped
1 cup fresh or frozen peas

In a large Dutch oven, sauté a medium onion, few stalks celery, and few cloves garlic (all chopped/minced) in a tablespoon or 2 of the oil of your choice until soft. Add a few carrots, peeled and chopped, and sauté a bit more. Add a large potato or 2 (also peeled and chopped), 2 cups of vegetable stock (use the water you boiled your seitan in!), and a small can of tomato paste (ours was 8 oz; the Garden of Vegan recipe called for 5 oz.) Throw in whatever herbs you like - G of V just says 1/2 tsp. dried thyme, 1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes, and 1/8 tsp. black pepper. However, I like things more flavorful, so I added a bunch of fresh thyme, rosemary, and sage; poultry seasoning, salt and pepper, and a bit more Braggs. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes, or till potatoes are cooked. Add some sliced white mushrooms (5 or so) and simmer a bit more. Turn off heat, stir in the seitan and peas, and let sit for 5 minutes before serving. Makes 4 servings.

Notes: This made more than 4 servings for us, but the friend I made this with and I also weren't following the recipe exactly. We made it extra-tasty by adding a packet of vegetarian brown gravy mix to the stew towards the end of the cooking time. You could also (we did this in addition to the gravy, since we really like thick stew!) thicken your stew with some flour and water - just make sure you whisk together a few tablespoons each of flour and COLD water well before adding it to the soup, or you'll just get ugly flour lumps instead of nice smooth thick deliciousness. Also, we cooked the whole shebang for a while longer on very low heat after adding the seitan, and found it added a nice flavor to our fakey meat! Make sure you do chop it up fairly small, though - we agreed that our 3/4" square-ish chunks were a little too overpowering.

Enjoy! It's especially good for sharing with friends on a cold night :o)
Tags: seitan, soups-stews, substitutes-meat-beef, techniques-seitan
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