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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2011 7:06 am 
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Hi viva vegan followers, a query about the seitan recipes from the book: I have tried making both white and red seitan recipes and each time the end product has been too soft to cook with. At the point where I am supposed to knead it, it is just too sloppy, the first time this happened I remedied it by adding a fair bit more VWG, but I should think that probably sacrificed some flavour. I am following the ingredients & directions exactly, so can't figure out what the problem is? I bought the copy in the uk, are the measurements changed for uk peoples or something? (my copy specifies 1.5 cups of veg broth, 1.5 cups of VWG and a quarter cup of chickpea flour.)

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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2011 10:14 am 
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Badgermog wrote:
Hi viva vegan followers, a query about the seitan recipes from the book: I have tried making both white and red seitan recipes and each time the end product has been too soft to cook with. At the point where I am supposed to knead it, it is just too sloppy, the first time this happened I remedied it by adding a fair bit more VWG, but I should think that probably sacrificed some flavour. I am following the ingredients & directions exactly, so can't figure out what the problem is? I bought the copy in the uk, are the measurements changed for uk peoples or something? (my copy specifies 1.5 cups of veg broth, 1.5 cups of VWG and a quarter cup of chickpea flour.)


I think the dough is supposed to be a little messy, but if you can't even form loaves, that does sound like a problem. You could probably try adding a little less liquid next time and see if that helps. I find the red seitan is a little softer than the white seitan, and neither one is particularly tough, but they both firm up after a night (or longer) in the fridge.


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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2011 10:50 am 
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Yeah, whenever I make any seitan recipe, the water squishes out and it's not quite like kneading bread doughs, but you should be able to hold a loaf together after the kneading period with the measurements as written in the book. Does your seitan mixture at least hold a loaf form to roll in your foil or parchment paper or whatever you use for steaming? I've only made the white seitan once from VV and it came out perfectly for me, but I did let it sit in the fridge overnight, did not use immediately. It should be kind of squooshy to knead with a bit of water separation but after a couple of minutes of kneading it comes together better, but it's never quite like the sensation of kneading bread dough where it all stays together and you can feel it transforming/elasticizing in your hands as you knead (to use another example of something one commonly kneads in comparison).

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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2011 12:38 pm 
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Badgermog wrote:
Hi viva vegan followers, a query about the seitan recipes from the book: I have tried making both white and red seitan recipes and each time the end product has been too soft to cook with. At the point where I am supposed to knead it, it is just too sloppy, the first time this happened I remedied it by adding a fair bit more VWG, but I should think that probably sacrificed some flavour. I am following the ingredients & directions exactly, so can't figure out what the problem is? I bought the copy in the uk, are the measurements changed for uk peoples or something? (my copy specifies 1.5 cups of veg broth, 1.5 cups of VWG and a quarter cup of chickpea flour.)


It might be the kind of Vital Wheat Gluten you are using. I had problems using different kinds and now I always use Bob's Red Mill but you might not be able to get that where you are. Seitan also seems affected by humidity. So maybe try it again with a different brand because it is totally worth it.

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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2011 4:57 pm 
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Badgermog wrote:
Hi viva vegan followers, a query about the seitan recipes from the book: I have tried making both white and red seitan recipes and each time the end product has been too soft to cook with. At the point where I am supposed to knead it, it is just too sloppy, the first time this happened I remedied it by adding a fair bit more VWG, but I should think that probably sacrificed some flavour. I am following the ingredients & directions exactly, so can't figure out what the problem is? I bought the copy in the uk, are the measurements changed for uk peoples or something? (my copy specifies 1.5 cups of veg broth, 1.5 cups of VWG and a quarter cup of chickpea flour.)


I've had the same problem, mine was slop. I added more VWG and more chickpea flour, which definitely firmed it up, but the finished product just didn't taste good after all the changes I had to make. I'm starting to think that I need to just accept that I'm bad at making seitan. Yeah, this isn't helpful, but you're not alone!

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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2011 5:24 pm 
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Erinnerung wrote:
Badgermog wrote:
Hi viva vegan followers, a query about the seitan recipes from the book: I have tried making both white and red seitan recipes and each time the end product has been too soft to cook with. At the point where I am supposed to knead it, it is just too sloppy, the first time this happened I remedied it by adding a fair bit more VWG, but I should think that probably sacrificed some flavour. I am following the ingredients & directions exactly, so can't figure out what the problem is? I bought the copy in the uk, are the measurements changed for uk peoples or something? (my copy specifies 1.5 cups of veg broth, 1.5 cups of VWG and a quarter cup of chickpea flour.)


I've had the same problem, mine was slop. I added more VWG and more chickpea flour, which definitely firmed it up, but the finished product just didn't taste good after all the changes I had to make. I'm starting to think that I need to just accept that I'm bad at making seitan. Yeah, this isn't helpful, but you're not alone!

Like LazySmurf suggested, it might be that different brands of VWG are different (I know this seems to be true for regular flours too). I don't have the option of trying another brand, but I always add less liquid and it turns out fine.


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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 5:55 pm 
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Not sure what's going on, but it could be the kind of brand of gluten. The dough will be soft and sticky (not firm like a bread dough), but definitely be able to separate into pieces for steaming. The end product will definitely be firm enough to slice with a sharp knife.

Make sure you give the dough a good kneading to help the gluten develop.


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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2011 5:56 pm 
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omg I finally broke in my tortilla press and made corn tortillas on Saturday...so easy and SO delicious. I thought my toddler was going to burst from eating them, and my partner and I had simple tacos with some leftover white seitan and chipotle cream. Also, I just noticed my press has "PATACONES" stamped on it (its cast-iron) so that means I should try to make the little patacones recipe soon too!

then, yesterday, I made the empanadas (regular wheat ones) with the mushroom-seitan-olive-raisin filling. My GOD these were good, but I'm a dummy because I halved everything (including the dough) because I thought I didn't feel like fussing with 10 empanadas. Well, between our neighbor and us we ate all 5 immediately and were dying for more. Next time I'm gonna plan ahead and have more filling to fill a double batch.

in addition, I made the So Good So Green dipping sauce just 'cause it sounded so good and we had to stop ourselves from dipping everything (the empanadas, some chips, our fingers!) in it. We have about half of it left and its being had for dinner over some tiny roasted potatoes, with sauteed chard and the yellow aji tempeh. Can't wait!


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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Wed Jan 19, 2011 5:11 pm 
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Ok thanks for all the advice people, looks like this one is going down as the brand of wheat gluten I use- there's only one that I know of available here in the uk and I'm pretty sure you don't have it in the US. I'll just make the seitan with less water in the future, it's the only way to get a kneadable texture.

A shop near me has jut started selling a line of Mexican/south American ingredients which were previously very difficult to get hold of, so I'll be making the black bean and sweet potato tamales from VV on Saturday. As we speak I am still a tamale virgin, so wish me luck!

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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 7:21 am 
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Badgermog wrote:
Ok thanks for all the advice people, looks like this one is going down as the brand of wheat gluten I use- there's only one that I know of available here in the uk and I'm pretty sure you don't have it in the US.!

What brand are you using? I used the low carb megastore stuff and the red seitan worked perfectly!

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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 5:40 pm 
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baps wrote:
Badgermog wrote:
Ok thanks for all the advice people, looks like this one is going down as the brand of wheat gluten I use- there's only one that I know of available here in the uk and I'm pretty sure you don't have it in the US.!

What brand are you using? I used the low carb megastore stuff and the red seitan worked perfectly!



I'm using the stuff from low carb megastore too... now I really don't know what's going on! What measurements does your copy have? Although it's not really a problem if I just add less water.

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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2011 2:48 pm 
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I used the filling from the potato chickpea enchiladas to make taquitos for lunch. they are really good! I wish I had guacamole to go with but don't feel like going to the grocery store.

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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2011 8:02 pm 
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I just had to sing the praises of the red and white seitan again. I had made a batch months and months ago. It has been frozen since September and tonight I thawed a loaf of each and simply pan fried them in strips. We mixed them with the yellow rice with garlic and then spooned them on corn tortillas and ate them with salsa and Sour Supreme.

If I could marry them I would. The stuff keeps so well, is super flavorful, and the smell alone makes me drool. I need to make like a quadruple batch of each and just fill my freezer with the loaves.


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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Sun Jan 23, 2011 10:37 am 
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This quickly became my favorite cookbook. I haven't made anything from it that we didn't love. Favorite so far is the green posole. And the seitans are perfection.


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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Sun Jan 23, 2011 10:44 am 
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xmiyux wrote:
I just had to sing the praises of the red and white seitan again. I had made a batch months and months ago. It has been frozen since September and tonight I thawed a loaf of each and simply pan fried them in strips. We mixed them with the yellow rice with garlic and then spooned them on corn tortillas and ate them with salsa and Sour Supreme.

If I could marry them I would. The stuff keeps so well, is super flavorful, and the smell alone makes me drool. I need to make like a quadruple batch of each and just fill my freezer with the loaves.

Seriously. I'm sorry for you guys that are having problems. White seitan is a lifesaver! It will look sloppy when you mix it, probably sloppier than you are expecting, it's quite wet, but when you steam it, it firms up beautifully.

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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Sun Jan 23, 2011 12:12 pm 
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Wonderful wonderful cookbook. I cooked with it many times last summer. Favorites are the arepas, homemade tortillas (bought a tortilla press online for doing so), the red seitan, and of course, a metric buttload of tamales enjoyed throughout the holidays. Many years ago I used to date a vegetarian guy from a Mexican American family. His mom would make vegetarian tamales for him at Christmas time, as well as veggie enchiladas smothered in mole (negro) (she would use tomato sauce to thin it rather than chicken stock).
Making up Terry's recipes reminded me of those wonderful treats I got to enjoy all those years ago.


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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Sun Jan 23, 2011 12:15 pm 
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I'm cooking several dishes from this this week (many of these are repeats and in regular rotation for me): making the Latin baked tofu, smoked kale and cilantro lime rice for dinner tonight (with leftovers) and later in the week, columbian red beans and probably the yellow rice. I can't get enough of this cookbook!

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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Mon Jan 24, 2011 7:56 am 
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Badgermog wrote:
baps wrote:
Badgermog wrote:
Ok thanks for all the advice people, looks like this one is going down as the brand of wheat gluten I use- there's only one that I know of available here in the uk and I'm pretty sure you don't have it in the US.!

What brand are you using? I used the low carb megastore stuff and the red seitan worked perfectly!



I'm using the stuff from low carb megastore too... now I really don't know what's going on! What measurements does your copy have? Although it's not really a problem if I just add less water.

I'll look it up when I get home.

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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Mon Jan 24, 2011 9:47 pm 
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I just got this book in the mail! I'm so excited; I've been wanting it forever! I'm about to make so many empanadas it's not even funny.


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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 10:22 pm 
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Let us know what empas you make first!


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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Thu Jan 27, 2011 8:30 am 
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Black bean and sweet potato tamales were a huge success! It took all afternoon from start to finish but it's one of my favourite combinations to put in anything and tasted amazing. Sunday is tamale day from now on.

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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Fri Jan 28, 2011 9:41 pm 
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Has anyone mentioned the corn chowder with lima beans and quinoa? Staple in this house! Especially now that it's cold out.


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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Sat Jan 29, 2011 7:40 pm 
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kasiakoz wrote:
Has anyone mentioned the corn chowder with lima beans and quinoa? Staple in this house! Especially now that it's cold out.

I must try it! I bought the fixins to make another warming type stew for Superbowl Sunday. I'm going to make the portabello feijoada with Brazilian orange rice. Yum!

Also later this week, I'm making the pan-fried tempeh with sofrito and yuca with garlic lime mojo sauce. These two dishes are an oft repeat for me although I usually make them with other sides (the pan fried tempeh I usually make with rice and pidgeon peas and the yuca I usually have with the orange mojo tofu). Anyhoo, I have the last 1/2 cup of some sofrito I made a while back still in the freezer so I just want to use it up in the tempeh before it gets that freezer-y taste to it. I'll probably make a fresh batch of sofrito next weekend.

Also, I'm dying to make some of the tacos and tamales sometime soon and especially tamales before winter is over (tamale-making seems a winter Sunday undertaking) and then stuff like the corn-crusted tempeh pie and some empadas. More Sunday cookings! I should make some seitan this weekend or next so I can try the seitan potato chipotle tacos very soon.

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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Mon Jan 31, 2011 6:16 am 
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I made the feijoda (i'm sure I spelt that wrong) on Friday night for my 3 omni friends. I was a bit nervous because I don't cook for 2 of them often so was wary of serving them TVP, but they loved it and between them polished off the leftovers!

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 Post subject: Re: Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero
PostPosted: Mon Jan 31, 2011 11:38 am 
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baps wrote:
I made the feijoda (i'm sure I spelt that wrong) on Friday night for my 3 omni friends. I was a bit nervous because I don't cook for 2 of them often so was wary of serving them TVP, but they loved it and between them polished off the leftovers!

I absolutely loved it! And the orange rice was the perfect accompaniment. And the recipe says its even better the next day and I have plenty o'leftovers, so that's awesome. I even froze half of it so I can make the same combo in the near future and have most of the work done (just need to make a fresh batch of the orange rice).

And like a d'oh, I went through all day yesterday thinking it was superbowl sunday (said in my earlier post I was making this for "Superbowl Sunday") but it turns out that's next week. Anyway, oh well.

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