Seiten – what is it?

Posted by on May 27, 2010 in Blog

When I decided to become a vegan and later look into macrobiotics I kept reading recipes for “SEITEN”, what is it? I saw it in the health food store and bought it…made a recipe using it and it was horrible…so naturally any recipes I found with seiten in it I stayed away from it. Then I started seeing recipes to make your own..Seitan,so I decided to try it. 
Seiten is actually wheat meat. Seitan is made from wheat gluten, made by kneading the bran and starch out of the flour. Eaten raw, its pretty bland (I wouldn’t recommend it). But, cooked and mixed with various seasonings, its really quite tasty. Seiten is a great source of protein, and an added benefit, its low in calories and fat. 
I found this recipe for making seiten in “The Real Food Daily” cookbook
Chicken -Style Seitan
Makes 4 1/2 pounds
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon canola oil
2/3 cup chopped onion
1 tablespoon minced garlic
3 1/2 cups gluten flour
1 cup garbanzo flour
2/3 cup nutritional yeast
1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
1 3/4 cups canned cannellini beans 
1/3 cup tamari
3 cups water
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Line an 8″ square baking pan with parchment paper. Lightly oil the parchment paper. Heat the 1 tablespoon oil in a skillet over medium heat,. Add the onion and garlic and saute for 5 minutes, or until tender. Set aside to cool.
Stir the gluten flour, garbanzo flour, nutritional yeast, and salt in a large bowl to blend. Puree the beans, the tamari, the remaining 1/2 cup oil, and the sauteed onion mixture in a blender until smooth, adding some of the water to create a smooth and creamy consistency.  Pour into a bowl, whisk the bean mixture and the  remaining water to blend. 
Quickly stir the bean mixture into the dry ingredients until a very wet dough forms. Transfer the dough to the prepared baking pan and smooth the top. Cover with aluminum foil.
Place the pan of seitan dough in a larger roasting pan, add enough water to come halfway up the sides of the seitan pan. Bake for 2 hours, or until the seitan is firm on top, adding more water to the roasting pan if necessary. Cool the setan to room temperature and cut into 4 equal squares (about 1 pound each).

The seitan will keep for 2 days, covered and refrigerated. This freezes quite well, just wrap the squares separately in plastic wrap, and place in a resealable plastic bag for up to 2 weeks.
Now you can make many wonderful dishes that are really good for you!
ENJOY!

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