Braised Seitan: What I've Learned So Far
This recipe for braised seitan in mushroom and red wine sauce features another popular meat alternative - seitan, one of the few meat substitutes made without soy.
The word “seitan” is of Japanese origin, and when roughly translated, means “made of proteins.” It’s created by washing wheat flour dough with water until all the starch granules have been removed, leaving only the sticky insoluble gluten as an elastic, taffy-like mass. This is then cut into pieces and used in cooking.
Because it’s quite dense, it's more similar to meat than other plant-based protein foods. It's also got a neutral flavor so absorbs other flavors really well. You can bake it, steam it, sauce it, or simmer it - it's pretty versatile!
Although seitan is a good source of protein, it's not something you'll want to eat every day. Like other processed, packaged foods you buy, it contains added ingredients, salt, and preservatives.
Because it's made from wheat gluten (literally!), if you have a wheat allergy, celiac disease or gluten intolerance, seitan is not for you!
The Ingredients and Recipe
Braised Seitan Notes
• You can find seitan in grocery stores, usually near the tofu.
• This is best if you use a drier red wine, and not a sweet wine. Something like Cabernet Sauvignon works well.
• This is a great dish to serve to someone who eats meat. The sauce will mask the fact that the protein is seitan, but the taste and texture will be very satisfying for meat eaters.