You know how everyone says bacon is THE reason they could never possibly be vegetarian? Pretty sure eggs are THE reason I may not be able to be full time vegan. I don’t even miss them much yet but I miss how easy and quick they are.
Vegan lent rules. I’m beyond stoked about it but I’m not gonna lie – this past week was a challenge. I was starving pretty much all week, but it is my fault. I didn’t plan well. And as we all know, eating healthy is an act of thoughtful preparation.
Lent conveniently coincides with my hell time at work which means I am working some intense hours leaving little room for much else. Between trying to get in a few gym sessions and hoping to sleep a little, my diet was mildly ignored which left me hungry. Everyday. This is typically where eggs come in as my saving grace – chock full o’ protein and oh so delicious with even just a little salt and pepper. I will save any moral commentary here because yes, I am painfully aware of the implications of eating eggs and believe it or not, think about those every time I eat them. Doesn’t mean I don’t still love ‘em.
So this weekend we planned. Big time. We cooked. Big time. And now I am ready to face a week full of healthy, delicious, homemade vegan food. Bring it on.
Until lent is over my favorite go to protein source is now Seitan. But not the weird, salty, over processed goop at the store. I finally made my own. With a little help from T-dogg of course. I actually view seitan as my “meat” in that it still doesn’t feel like the most healthy food ever. I can’t eat it everyday but for my next “I’m starving” moment, I have a supply of homemade yummy goodness to throw into just about anything.
Steamed Red Seitan ~ Adapted from Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
For my homies who know the amazingness of Horizon’s – this doesn’t even come close but it’ll do. For those who don’t know the magical heaven that is Horizon’s I will say this, if I were rich I would make special arrangements to fly to Philly on the regular solely to eat there. Nuff said.
She makes a red and white version – I like the red best so whoop here it is…
1 ½ C cold vegetable broth
4 cloves garlic, peeled and pressed
3 T soy sauce
4 T tomato paste
2 T olive oil
1 ½ C vital wheat gluten flour
¼ C chickpea (garbanzo flour)
¼ C nutritional yeast
1 t dried oregano
½ t ground cumin
1) In measuring cup, whisk together the broth, garlic, soy sauce, tomato paste, and olive oil.2) In large bowl, combine wheat gluten, chickpea flower, nutritional yeast, oregano, and cumin. Form a well in the center.
3) Pour liquid ingredients into the well and stir with rubber spatula until dough leaves the side of the bowl.
4) Knead dough for 2-3 minutes to develop the gluten (it will get kinda stringy and mushy).
5) Let dough rest for 10 minutes; knead again for 30 seconds.
6) Place dough on cutting board, cut into four equal pieces with sharp knife then lightly knead each piece a few times.
7) Shape each into a roughly oblong loaf shape.
8) Tear off four 12-inch square sheets of aluminum foil. Place a piece of dough in the of a piece of foil. Fold the short sides of foil over the loaf, then fold the long ends over. The foil should be secure but you want a lil loose space around the dough so it can expand while cooking. Repeat with the other pieces of dough.
9) Place wrapped dough in a steamer basket and steam for 30 minutes. Unwrap and let cool while sitting on foil.
She says for best texture and flavor to prepare a day or two in advance. I agree. Just make sure it cools completely before you store it. To store it, wrap each piece tightly in plastic wrap. It stores up to two weeks in fridge but can also be frozen (wrap tightly) then thawed in fridge. I used the loaves after both storing methods and it was great. I’ve learned sautéing it in peanut oil gives it some awesome crunch but I’m sure cooking it up in any oil will work. We served it with homemade tortilla’s, sautéed onions and peppers in Mexican red sauce.
Are you veg or vegan? What are your favorite go to sources of protein in a pinch?