Tuesday, January 22, 2013

To Meat, or not to Meat....that is

A while back I watched a cooking show where the main dish was seitan....now I was in the dark to what it was....do you know?

I had to do some searching to learn that it is a meat pretender made from wheat gluten.  Apparently it can be found in the vegan aisle of the grocery store.  I've never seen it and I do shop that area.  You can make your own with very little trouble.

I get so curious, I just have to try these things for myself.

I found some recipes online, as well as a box of Vital Wheat Gluten on the shelf next to the sacks of flour at my local food store.  It was really easy to mix the wheat gluten with the seasoned liquid, then knead it for a couple of minutes, and shape it into some patties.  Then, I boiled it in water for 30 minutes, and it was done.  I got 6 patties from the small box.  I put them separately into plastic baggies to freeze for later meals.

The box bought at the store for about $3.00......all protein and no fat
After formed into patties, these needed to simmer in liquid for 30 minutes.

I ate all of them as if they were hamburger patties, although they can be sliced and chopped to use as a meat substitute in stews or stir fries.  To cook as a hamburger patty, I defrosted them and browned them on both sides in a skillet containing a little olive oil.  They were great!  The mouth-feel and chew seemed like real hamburger meat.

My seitan patty on a piece of bread with lettuce and other condiments

I realize many of you will not want to try these, but I'm just throwing it out there anyway.  I made a second batch later on, but baked the raw mixture instead of boiling it.  The last few minutes of baking I brushed the "meat" with a prepared barbeque sauce...this was also good.

***If you are gluten intolerant, this is definitely not for you.

Good online sites to gather information.  I got my first recipe on how to mix the dry powdered wheat gluten from this one.

The second batch I baked,  I used this site.

I haven't tried this burger recipe by Oprah yet but will soon....it looks fabulous.

If you want to get off the ground beef,  try some seitan.

Happy experimenting.....



  1. Seeing your gluten patties reminds me of when we were young and living in Strasbourg France and my mother would "wash" flour to extract the gluten to make patties that look just like yours. Brings back memories. My mother is now gluten intolerant and I am no longer vegetarian. I guess life changes.

    1. Yes, we all make changes along the way. I'm not a vegetarian either, but I like to try other things. I was mildly surprised with the taste and texture of this seitan.