In this time of earth’s history, we can see that the beasts of the field are languishing (See Hosea 4:1-3 KJV). Disease in the animal kingdom is at such a point that so many health experts, doctors, and nutritionists are advising their patients, or clients, to take on a plant-based diet to improve their health and prevent disease. As we see numerous recalls in the meat industry more and more, there is more of need for tasty plant-based meat substitutes. This recipe is just such one!
Yes, this is my beef meat substitute (seitan). If I am following a recipe that calls for beef, I use this in its stead. For me, this is pretty simple to make. The entire process takes under an hour. Really, just dump all the ingredients into a food processor (don’t forget the lemon juice at the end!) and let the food processor knead the dough for about 5 minutes. Let it stand for about 15-30 minutes. Then form patties, and steam! Voila!!! Done!!!
So, why the acid? The lemon juice helps cut the taste of the vital wheat gluten; so don’t leave that out. A lime will do it too. Lemon, or any other acid, helps cut the sharp taste of garbanzo flour, whole wheat, and vital wheat gluten. I do not like this taste, so I praise the Lord for lemons!!! They are a staple food!
A bit of logistics. I usually process my own breadcrumbs with my pecans first. I squeeze my lemon (and set aside) and combine my water, liquid aminos, and oil (and set aside). I pretty much lay out everything I need before I get started. It makes the process quick and easy. You may think I am using a ton of ingredients, but they all make this substitute feel and taste to my liking. Feel free to change it up any way you like!
A word of advice: Coat the patties in oil before processing. This will help them not to stick together and help the moisture retention. Once the substitute is finished processing, you will want to seal it in a glass container quickly. It will still be hot and will give off its own moisture, if sealed properly. If you leave it out for a while. Add a bit of water to it, if storing in the refrigerator. Alternatively, you may refrigerate for one night and bag into freezer bags. I never add extra water to my freezer bags and they turn out just fine. I do believe it helps the texture to let them sit in the refrigerator overnight before putting it in the freezer.
As shown in the demo, I make patties/steaklets with my meat. I do this because this is versatile for me. If I need grounds for tacos or chili, I can cut these patties in fours and then pulse to ground them in a the food processor. I can also cut up these patties into chunks for stews or Asian dishes. If I want to make steaklets, then all I have to do is saute them.
Well, without further ado, I hope you like the recipe. I’ll share my chicken meat substitute shortly. It is the same steaming process, so I may just share the ingredients and not a demo.
Beef Meat Substitute
- 1 ½ cups vital wheat gluten (plus more for dusting)
- ½ cup compressed tofu
- ½ cup grounded breadcrumbs
- 1/8 cup grounded pecans (optional)
- 2 Tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 1 Tablespoon onion powder
- 1 Tablespoon minced onions (heaping)
- 1 teaspoon konjac root pure powder (OR add psyllium husks powder)
- 1 teaspoon coffee substitute (OR add blackstrap molasses)
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- ½ teaspoon Monk’s pepper (or add papaya seed pepper)
- ½ teaspoon carob powder (or up to 1 teaspoon)
- ¼ teaspoon coriander
- 1/8 teaspoon cardamon, grounded
- ¼ cup liquid aminos
- 1 Tablespoon avocado oil
- ¾ cup alkaline/pure water + more a Tablespoon at a time if needed until dough forms
- 4 Tablespoons lemon juice
- Place large pot with steamer basket filled half way on the stove to boil.
- In the food processor, pulse bread crumbs and pecans until bead-like crumbs.
- In a separate bowl/cup mix all wet ingredients, and set aside.
- Add crumb mixture to food processor with tofu and all remaining DRY ingredients and mix.
- While dry mixture is mixing, pour wet ingredients into mixture and only add additional water (up to 1/3 cup if necessary) until a dough ball forms. Give the processing at least a minute to see if the dough ball will form before adding the extra water. When the all ingredients have formed into a ball, KNEAD (MIX) in the food processor for an additional 5 minutes. You may need to hold it while it is processing. This will help your food processor not break and keep your food processor in place. My food processor tries to escape.
- Place a sheet of parchment paper on top of your cutting board and add some vital wheat gluten flour to it and coat your hands. This will make for easier clean up. Coat dough with gluten flour.
- Form large patties if you wish to make grounds and smaller patties for steaklets. Be sure to coat each slice with gluten flour as you form patties.
- Spray the steam basket with high heat oil (I use cold-pressed avocado oil), spray patties on top after adding them to the basket.
- Steam patties for 25-30 minutes, turning them half way through for even steaming on both sides (I break this up into two 15-minute time intervals). I usually do this in two batches if I am making steaklets to keep them flat.
- Lastly, place these in a glass container with lid immediately after they come out of the steamer. This will prevent drying as well. I leave them in the refrigerator overnight. Then I label, date, and bag them to freeze.
IMPORTANT TO NOTE: These are tasty as is; but you may add seasonings and cook to your liking. Do not cook for a long period; just quickly heat through. Too much cooking/heating will dry them out and make them hard if no additional liquid is being used. Okay to leave them in soup and liquid gravy for longer.
Feeling overwhelmed?!? Watch the demo and RELAX!
LASTLY… an ACKNOWLEDGEMENT:
Shout out to my niece, Chesi of Peaceful Reign Photography, for the professional feature photo and shooting this demo. Love you, girl!