Learn How to Make Seitan
Learning how to make seitan provides vegetarians and vegans with another meat substitute. Seitan can be eaten on its own or used as a meat substitute in a variety of other recipes. All that is required to make seitan is wheat gluten flour (also known as vital wheat gluten or wheat gluten powder) and water or stock. A plain version can be created using just the basic ingredients, however a wide variety of herbs and spices can be added to the base ingredients to create tasty savory dishes.
- 1 cup Wheat gluten flour
- Approximately 3/4 cup Water or stock
Plus any seasoning as required.
Gather the Ingredients
Making seitan is very simple. The key to success is to ensure that the seitan mix is well kneaded before it is cooked.
Gather ingredients together. Pour the wheat gluten flour into a mixing bowl. If you are seasoning the seitan, add the seasoning at this point.
Pour the water or stock onto the wheat gluten flour and mix well. The gluten mix needs to be of a firm and sticky consistency. Add extra liquid if required. Always remembering that it is easier to add liquid than it is to take liquid away.
Knead the Mix
Start kneading the mix. Gluten is very different than traditional flour. When wet, the mix is more 'rubbery' to work with. To avoid potential damage to a food mixer or processor it is best to knead the mix by hand. Keep kneading the mix until it feels smooth to touch and starts to look silky. The kneading helps to encourage the gluten to stretch and this is what gives the seitan its chewy texture.
Leave the Seitan to Rest
Leave the seitan mix to rest for a further five minutes. Put the water or stock on to boil.
Shape the Sietan
Break the seitan up into even sized chunks and shape as required. It will expand while it is being cooked. The seitan is difficult to shape, therefore balls or 'sausage' shapes might be easiest to achieve.
Cook the Seitan
Place the seitan into clean boiling water or stock. Bring to the boil and allow the seitan to cook for about an hour. When the seitan is cooked it will no longer be sticky in the middle.
Allow the Seitan to Cool
When the seitan is cooked it will no longer be sticky in the middle. Remove from the saucepan and leave to cool. At this point the seitan can be prepared for eating or stored for use at a later date. Seitan can be frozen successfully.
One quick and simple way to prepare seitan is to slice it into chunks and stir fry this in olive oil. Sprinkle this with sea salt and serve over salad.
Seitan can also be used as a meat substitute. Finely chopped seitan makes a great substitute for minced meat.
See Seitan Recipes and How to Make Veggie Burgers for more recipe ideas.