Cutting the the chase: Giving you the scoop on what is seitan made from. Seitan is wheat gluten produced by using wheat flour and mixing it with a number of ingredients. The end result is a dough that is then cooked in vegetable broth to produce a bread-like pattie.
It is a great Vegan alternative to meat products as it makes for a sensational substitute texture. It is also high in protein and low in carbohydrates, making it a great food for fasts.
So what are the ingredients?
Seitan is made from several ingredients:
- Wheat flour / wheat gluten
- Nutritional yeast
- Ginger powder
- Garlic powder
- Soy sauce (or Tamari), and
- Water or vegetable broth
What is the process to make Seitan?
Seitan is produced by mixing your wheat flour with nutritional yeast, ginger, and garlic. In a separate dish, you would mix soy sauce or tamari with water or vegetable broth. After the two have been mixed, you would combine them by slowly pouring in the soy sauce dish into the wheat flour dish.
While doing this, you mix the ingredients in by hand. The simplest way is to use your actual hands to do so. The texture should feel rubbery.
Once it is all mixed up thoroughly, you will knead the dough multiple times. The more the better as it helps activate the wheat gluten which releases more proteins to give the seitan the desired texture. The seitan is then broken into smaller, thinner pieces and added to a vegetable broth.
The seitan is then cooked for an hour or so before being removed and ready for serving. For the ease of meal perpetration in bulk it is possible for you to make batches of seitan and freezing it for later use.
Is there a recipe I could try?
There sure is. We’ve put together a simple recipe to make your own seitan, and even an added tip to increase and vary the flavor of your seitan. All you’ll need is:
- 350 grams of wheat flour or wheat gluten
- 175 grams of nutritional yeast
- 30ml of Soy Sauce (or Tamari)
- 1 teaspoon of ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon of garlic powder
- 1.5L of water or vegetable broth
For added flavor, you can easily add the following:
- Use additional Soy Sauce or Tamari
- Use fresh ginger pieces in addition
- Use chopped up onion
- Add crumbled seaweed to a seafood flavor
- (if you’re not Vegan and want to give this a go) Add poultry seasoning for a chicken flavor
As above, grab two dishes for mixing ingredients. Your first dish will have your wheat flour/gluten, nutritional yeast, ground ginger, and garlic powder. The second dish will have your soy sauce mixed in with 250ml of water or vegetable broth.
Once each bowl is mixed, slowly tip the second bowl containing soy and broth into the first bowl and mix thoroughly. To get the best result, use your hands and pour in slowly, not all at once. The dough should take on a rubbery texture. If it does not feel that way you can add a bit more water slowly to get the desired texture.
The next step is crucial as it activates the gluten parts that releases the proteins needed to cook the seitan. You will need to knead the dough approximately 10 times. This is done in cycles where you will knead the dough, leave it to sit for 5 or so minutes after kneading, and then knead it again.
After kneading is complete, break the dough into smaller pieces. You should be able to get 3 or 4 good sized pieces. It should be spread as well to ensure it is not too think. Try to ensure the pieces are no thicker than 2cm.
Put your remaining vegetable broth (1250ml) into a cooking pot and place the seitan pieces in. Do not turn on the stove until the seitan is in the pot. It is important to not bring it to the boil first, but to slowly bring it to a simmer. At this point you can add any of your extra ingredients for flavor.
The seitan then needs to cook for an hour or more. If the pot looks like it is boiling dry slowly add more water or vegetable broth. The seitan will expand while cooking, so ensure you have selected a pot large enough for this.
After the cooking is complete, you can then serve the seitan fresh, or freeze it for a later meal. Defrosting is simple, just place your piece in a bowl in the fridge and enjoy later on.
As mentioned in the opening, this is a great food for fasting, and for a vegan keto diet, it’s the bomb!
Have you made seitan before? Give us your tips on how to make the perfect batch of it below.