Making homemade seitan

Yield: 1 Servings

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A while back someone asked for a recipe on how to make your own seitan. I have never even had it before, but this is a recipe I found. I got it at the following link: You can also find lots of things to do with seitan on this page.

Combine 18 cups whole wheat flour and about 11 cups water in a large (8 quart) bowl or a round plastic dishpan. (This makes a lot. This amount works well for my family of two adults and one small boy - we love seitan, and this amount makes a week's worth for us to eat in a variety of dishes.

You can halve this recipe or increase it. If you do change the amount, remember to adjust the quanity of cooking broth accordingly.) Knead the dough, which should be quite sticky, for 5-10 minutes. The easiest way to do this is to set the bowl on a dining table (a counter top is too high) so you can use your weight effectively rather than just using your arm muscles. When flour and water are mixed, vigorously punch the dough with one closed fist, then the other, 300-350 times. Cover dough with cold water and let sit for at least ¾ hour. Knead the dough slowly and carefully in the water until the water becomes thick with white starch.

Pour off the creamy liquid. (This milky, somewhat thick "starch water" from the first few rinses can be saved - it is excellent in bread recipes and as a thickener for stews, sauces, etc.) Gently cover dough with water and knead again. Alternate between warm and cold water rinses, kneading each time to extract the cream-colored starch. A large colander will help in draining off the water from the first several kneadings. At first the dough will seem to be falling apart, and the colander will catch all the little pieces so you don't lose them down the drain. Sometimes a batch of flour disintegrates in the washing, instead of separating into strach, bran, and gluten. In this case you will have to try again with a different type of whole wheat flour.

After about six rinses, the dough should become rubbery gluten. Remaining specks of bran or starch can be rinsed away under the tap by pulling the gluten apart and exposing the inside.

Pull off balls, or form gluten into patties, and drop them into boiling water. When they rinse, like dumplings, remove and drop them into cold water.

Prepare seitan seasoning stock: In a large pot combine 14 cups cold water, two 6-inch strips of kombu, 1¼ cups shoyu or tamari, ¼ cup grated fresh ginger and, if desired, herbs. For example, try 1 tablespoon each rosemary and sweet basil and 2 teaspoons thyme, or use a combination of bay leaf, garlic, and celery seed. Drop gluten balls into stock, bring to a boil, and cook 2-3 hours over medium heat with lid ajar. (This may seem like a lot of stock at first, but the gluten absorbs most of it. Also, the length of cooking time depends on the size of your pieces of gluten. I divide the gluten into only four equal pieces and cook them for 3 hours.

Smaller pieces take less time.) The seitan is now ready to be used in any of the following recipes.

Seitan will keep for at least one week refrigerated in its cooking broth.

For longer storage, add more shoyu or tamari to the broth.

Posted to fatfree digest V97 #211 by richjulia@... (Richard and Julia Padget) on Sep 13, 1997

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