Wednesday, October 14, 2009

When Life Gives You Dry Seitan, Make Gravy!

So, I've posted about how my attempt at Kittee's scrumptious looking steamed seitan log was a bust (literally, that thing busted right through my foil wrap!) in that it was pretty dry. Okay for slicing really thin and using for sandwiches, okay for nibbling on right out of the fridge, but what I wanted was something hearty and seitan-y for dinner. What to do?
I decided to cut some 1/2 inch rounds and place them in mushroom boullion overnight and all day. My hope is that they would just rehydrate a bit and if that didn't work they'd at least be less dry and Hello! Mushroom Flavor! Yum!
Tonight I dipped those cutlets in soy milk laced with a bit of tabasco, then coated with a mixture of panko, almond meal, tapioca starch, nutritional yeast, garlic salt, and black pepper. Naturally, I fried them to a golden brown after that and served them up to myself and the Cap'n over a bed of steamed spinach and a side of roasted cauliflower and yellow squash.
What's that? I said something about gravy?
Oh yes I did! I have a thing for gravy. I'm a firm believe that basically anything can taste better with a healthy dose of creamy, rich, brown, salty gravy. Luckily, vegan gravy is easily the best gravy I've ever had (or made!). I've posted about it before, I'm not really a recipe kind of girl when it comes to gravy, I just get all the necessary ingredients out in this case, olive oil, flour, nutritional yeast, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, shoyu, salt, Gravy Master, and about two cups of heated soy milk or a mixture of soy milk and boullion broth (tonight I used the mushroom buillion that I had been soaking the seitan in. come to think of it, broth used to boil seitan would be fantastic here).
Basically, it plays out like so, heat sauce pan and add a Tablespoon or so of olive oil. Depending on how much you wanna make, add, while whisking, up to 1/4 c. flour and then add, again with the whisking, about the same amount of nutritional yeast. It will be a crumbly texture, but the flour and yeast should have absorbed all the oil. Add in very small amounts the heated liquid and whisk whisk whisk away any chance of lumps. It should be very hot. If it bubbles when the bit of liquid hits the pan and you're whisking? GOOD! Once all the liquid is incorporated, add spices, shoyu to taste and Gravy Master to taste (a tsp or so?) This stuff makes the color really rich and adds a hint of flavor and is totally vegan!. Whisking often and keeping an eye on it, bring to boiling until it starts to thicken. Depending on how little flour you've used, it may or may not thicken very well. Tonight mine was not doing so so I whisked a few good splashes of cold mushroom boullion with just under a tablespoon of cornstarch and added that to the boiling gravy. It thickened up immediately (whatever, Martha Stwewart! there's no graininess here, nothin' but INSANE YUM in this gravy!) and I achieved the perfect consistency.
This was sooooo good! The seitan was no longer dry, just really firm. I likened it to the days of old when we would eat shake and back pork chops. The breading was crunchy and satisfying and the gravy...oh, the gravy!
I swear, this was the best gravy I've made to date....but I think I always say that. Proof you don't have to have a recipe or be a seasoned chef to whip up a tasty gravy and make an amazing meal of a mishap!
and Mmmmmm, roasted cauliflower! or roasted any veg really, no gravy necessary!


Anonymous said...

Um, I'm pretty sure I now have a gigantic gravy craving.... Ohmygoodness, does yours every look good! :) -Eve

nora said...

gravy solves everything!

Niki said...

Your gravy looks great! Last time I made gravy it was from a tin of Massells vegan gravy powder which basically turned out like brown water. Now I know for next time!

Trinity (of haiku tofu) said...

Yummy! Thanks for posting this, I love gravy but lately my homemade stuff has tasted a little bland. What's
Gravy Master?

laura said...

i diced up some of my seitan log and tossed it in some mac & cheeze. worked out nicely.

Susan G said...

I love gravy! My favorite is the gravy from the Grit cookbook - I think the added bonus comes from the Worcestershire sauce.

I forgot I bought a bag of almond meal after your Caesar post. Do you think it would work with cornstarch instead of tapioca? That is something I can't find here.