Death to Vegetables (nefarioustofu) wrote in vegancooking,
Death to Vegetables
nefarioustofu
vegancooking

A how-to for home-made seitan

So, today I spent a good 5+ hours making gallons upon gallons of seitan for the vegan cafeteria where I work. Since recently there have been several posts asking about the best way to make seitan from scratch, I thought I'd post about how I did it. Before I did it, I read large sections of a book all about seitan strategies, so I'll write a little bit about that too. I hope you all find this helpful. Also, I haven't eaten this seitan yet, so if you have any suggestions on how to make it better, let me know, and I'll let you know how it is when it's done cooking.



First, the book suggested using an equal mix of whole wheat and unbleached white flours for the best texture. The recipe I'm posting will make 5 cups of cooked seitan.

Combine 8 cups of wheat flour and 8 cups of white flour. Slowly add in 7-8 cups of water and knead 50 times. The dough should be moist but not wet. Cover it with a damp towel and let it sit for 20-30 minutes. When you look at it again, it should be slightly sticky, but should not stick to your hands. If it *is* sticky, you probably need to add more flour and let it set some more. Knead it 20 additional times.

Now, fill the bowl of dough with lukewarm water. Make sure the water isn't cold. That will make for rubbery seitan. Take the dough inbetween your flattened palms, pull it up and squeeze. Do this MANY MANY MANY times. When the water is completely opaque, dump it out and do this at least two more times. As you go on, you can get more aggressive. It will start to look sort of like ground beef. What you're doing is taking out all the starch and the bran and leaving the gluten behind. Keep squeezing and kneading until the water comes out clear. Then you should have an elasticy mess that looks sort of like brains. This is good, this is what you want!

Next step: the broth. A traditional broth consists of soy sauce, ginger, and kombu, a sea vegetable. I don't know exact proportions since I made mine in mad bulk, but I know that it's four cups of water, 4" of kombu, but I have no idea how much ginger or soy sauce. Then you can add whatever spices you want. Parsley, basil, paprika, nutrional yeast, salt, pepper, corriander, whatever. You should have about 4 tablespoons of seasoning. Bring the water to a boil, then add the seitan (you can cut it into any size pieces you want.) Make sure that the water stays at a simmer, NOT at a boil, or your texture will be off. Ok, this last part is where there's a discrepancy. When I've made seitan for myself, I've simmered it for an hour, but my boss at the cafe where I work told me to simmer this stuff all night. I'll let you know tomorrow how it turns out. After that, you can do whatever you want with it. Bake it with veggies, cut it up for sandwiches, or what not.

I hope this was helpful!

Love and peace,
Hannah
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