Yield28 oz (790 g) seitan

Cookbook | Ingredients | Recipes

Seitan is a food made from gluten protein that has been extracted from wheat flour. It has a springy texture, with protein strands similar to those in chicken running through it, making it a reasonable replacement for meat in vegan or vegetarian dishes.

Ingredients Edit

  • 10 oz (280 g) high-gluten wheat flour (such as bread flour)
  • Water

Procedure Edit

  1. Add 2 cups water to the flour. Knead together until well-combined and elastic. It is advisable to keep hands wet so that the dough doesn't stick to the hands.
  2. Cover dough with water, and place in refrigerator for 1 hour.
  3. Gently knead the dough underwater until water is cloudy; dump cloudy water and replace with clear, cold water. In the beginning the dough can still easily dissolve underwater so it is advisable to only cautiously squeeze it against the bowl. Later you might find it easier to knead over the water, squeezing out the water, and only to dip the mass into the water to wash off the starch, if the mass contains too much water you easily wash out the gluten as well. The enriched water can be used to gain the insoluble starch, which settles on the bottom of the container, and what remains can serve as a base for grain milk.
  4. Continue kneading and replacing water until water remains clear after kneading. At the end, you should be left with a mass of gluten.
  5. Divide gluten mass into loaf- or roll-shaped halves. At this point, there are several things you can add to the mass:
    • Soy sauce (recommended): traditional in the making of seitan.
    • Spices: seitan can simulate Italian sausage by adding the correct spices, or adding poultry seasoning can make the seitan more similar to chicken or turkey.
    • Nutritional yeast (recommended): B12 found in some brands of nutritional yeast is a vitamin that is usually obtained through meats, eggs and/or dairy products.
  6. Place gluten loaves in pot, and cover with vegetable broth or dashi.
  7. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to simmer; simmer for 1–1.5 hours.
  8. Remove from heat and serve as desired or use in place of meat.

Notes, tips, and variations Edit

  • To avoid the washing process you can also buy 100% gluten flour in some stores. This flour would require only enough water to form it into a solid mass.
  • Seitan created using just gluten flour can be rubbery and has a very "gluteny" taste. Adding 1 part garbanzo bean flour to 4 parts gluten flour makes for a less chewy texture and a better flavor.
  • Because of their high protein content, gluten "steaks" can be grilled and fried to good effect.

Warnings Edit

Filtering half mask with exhalation valve (class: FFP3)
  • A disposable respirator mask can help to avoid inhaling the hygroscopic gluten flour, which becomes very sticky in combination with liquid. The lungs do have a certain capacity to resorb organic substances inside the lungs, but one shouldn't try to test that ability.