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 Post subject: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2012 5:01 am 
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Dying from Nooch Lung
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I'm not afraid of eating it. I'm afraid of using it. I've got a small but expensive package of vital wheat gluten staring down at me from my cupboard. I'm irrationally intimidated by it, for some reason. Maybe it's because it's so frikkin' expensive here, and if I screw up, it's basically like throwing away money. (The package I bought is 250g which comes to just a bit more than a US cup, and cost almost 4 EU.) I keep reading recipes for really yummy looking things but as soon as I see that they require VWG (and usually large amounts), I balk.

Has anyone else experienced this who is now a veteran VWG user? Do you have any advice to help me get over my intimidation? Do you have tips on how to foolproof using it so I'm less likely to screw up and have to throw out an expensive gloopy mess? Also, do any European based folk who know where I can get cheaper VWG? (I think someone once posted about a mill here that sells it, but I can't find the info anywhere.) Help me discover the joy that is making my own sausages/seitan!

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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2012 6:01 am 
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if it makes you feel better, when i buy gluten i have to get it from the breadmaker supply store and i can only get packages of 10kg! It costs a shitload of money. i had to be very committed to buy it!! (that might be an idea for you, is to consider a place that sells restaurant or bakery supplies)
1- it's only money, and in the big picture 4E isn't that bad. People pay more for fancy coffee, right?
2- use a bombproof recipe. the V Brunch/VWAV sausages are bombproof. The chickpea cutlets are bombproof. you really can't screw them up if you follow the directions. You will see how easy it is and you'll be hooked.

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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2012 6:06 am 
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Vegan Dad's sausages are fantastic.

As you're below sea-level, I'm going to hazard a guess that you're in the Netherlands? Try vegan-wonderland.de, it's a German site for very cheap gluten. It's based in Germany, but the postage may not be that high to you.

To be honest, the only difference between making seitan by hand from wheat flour and buying it pre-made is convenience. It only takes about ten minutes to make using flour and you just knead all the ingredients in and reduce the liquid accordingly.

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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2012 6:09 am 
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Hmm, maybe it helps to know that if you make something delicious out of it, and want more, your new gluten powder need not be as expensive as the stuff you've bought this time? (Maybe you'll curse loudly a few times when you read this, but you'll thank me later I guess)

I buy my gluten in bulk from this online miller's shop (bottom of the page). It's called tarwegluten, and is sold as a bread improvement agent. They charge €7 for delivery up to 30 kg. I buy my gluten in the 5 kg bags (that's a lot of gluten, but it lasts a long time and you can share the gluten or prepared seitan with family and friends) and usually order some nuts and baking supplies to make it worthwhile. But even if you'd buy only one kilo of gluten, that would cost €10, which is €2,50 / 250 g.

Anyway, 250 grams of gluten makes quite a lot of seitan, most commercially available vegan proteins cost way more than what you've paid for your current supply. Make some chickpea cutlets if you want to stretch the it.

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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2012 6:15 am 
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Well, if you don't use it, you're also throwing money away...so if you try to make something, at least there is the potential for tasty food in the end.


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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2012 6:55 am 
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I only use gluten for Seitan O greatness

I pay 2 Euro for 500 grams. http://www.dehoopklarenbeek.nl/web/inde ... Category=9


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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2012 7:02 am 
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I made chickpea cutlets from Veganomicon for my first try with VWG. In fact I think I might make some more today!


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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2012 7:41 am 
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Veg_Eric wrote:
I only use gluten for Seitan O greatness

I pay 2 Euro for 500 grams. http://www.dehoopklarenbeek.nl/web/inde ... Category=9

I also get mine from a windmill for less than €4 a kilo. I used to get it at a local bakery (they did have to order it for me but it wasn't a problem, so I imagine most bakeries are able to do that). I hope you can find a place like that near you as well, lepelaar! I love using gluten but I definitely wouldn't buy it as often it if it cost over €10 a bag.

And I second the chickpea cutlet suggestion - they use a relatively small amount of VWG and they're a great way to try it out for the first time.


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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2012 7:42 am 
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There is a Three-Bean Loaf in Vegan on the Cheap that uses vital wheat gluten along with other ingredients to make a "meatloaf" in a loaf pan -- it seems foolproof. I haven't tried it yet. I did make the Slow Cooker Seitan Pot Roast and I think I kneaded it wrong because it came out kind of spongey but still tasted good.

If you don't use it, you are definitely wasting money, so you might as well give it a try! It's not the main ingredient in that loaf, so maybe it might be a good recipe to try?


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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2012 12:29 pm 
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Thanks everyone for the tips! And thanks Cornelie and Veg_Eric for the mill links. I'll have to check those out and do some math.

And I know all of you who said I'd be wasting it by not using it are totally right, of course. I'm not sure why I'm so intimidated by the stuff. To my uninitiated mind, it's like it has some magical property that could go very right or very wrong.

I was looking at the chickpea cutlets, but also eying the Simple Italian Sausages on the blog. Those look like something I might be able to tackle, and I've got exactly the right amount of gluten for the recipe. I'll report back once I get over myself and just make something.

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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2012 1:38 pm 
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Veg_Eric wrote:
I only use gluten for Seitan O greatness

I pay 2 Euro for 500 grams. http://www.dehoopklarenbeek.nl/web/inde ... Category=9


I second this...pretty much impossible to mess up (knock on wood)

Good luck!


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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2012 1:48 pm 
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karichelle wrote:
I did make the Slow Cooker Seitan Pot Roast and I think I kneaded it wrong because it came out kind of spongey but still tasted good.

Odd, this was the recipe I was going to recommend. Each time I've made it, it's turned out dense and fantastic. I always do it for the full 8 hours, if not more. It really needs that time to firm up.

And to the OP, you really should try to find a cheaper source of VWG. Try the chickpea cutlets or seitan o greatness and once you find that it's really not so bad, you can start buying it online in bulk. My first 2 or 3 batches of boiled seitan were garbage. Then, I experimented with steamed and slow cooker seitan and found that these are the methods that works for me.

Learn by doing! It's no different than baking your first cookies, or pizza dough or making your own stock.

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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2012 2:50 pm 
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Just made & eaten chickpea Cutlets. So easy & quick & two left to eat tomorrow. Yay!
Also realised my VWG is out of date so I better get finding some other VWG recipes.


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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Sat Oct 06, 2012 3:21 pm 
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I can't believe I started this thread in February and I'm just now making my very first recipe using vwg! I've got the Herbed Breakfast Sausage Patties from Vegan Diner steaming away in the kitchen. Even in the mixing bowl the dough smelled AMAZING! I can't wait to try them!

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Ain't no guarantees in life, and nothing that comes out of my vagina can change that. - Erika Soyf*cker

I'd rather have a cupcake and a matte stomach. - Desdemona


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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Sat Oct 06, 2012 3:44 pm 
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Yay! You go girl!

How did they turn out?

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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Sat Oct 06, 2012 3:47 pm 
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Haven't tasted them yet. I just took them out of the steamer and they're cooling. She suggests refrigerating them overnight, but I may just have to fry one up before they go into the fridge, just to try it. They smell soooooooooooo good.

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Ain't no guarantees in life, and nothing that comes out of my vagina can change that. - Erika Soyf*cker

I'd rather have a cupcake and a matte stomach. - Desdemona


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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Sat Oct 06, 2012 7:59 pm 
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Yay for gluten! I hope your sausages came out delicious. The first homemade gluten recipe I ever tried was the Seitan O Greatness (as mentioned by others), which is pretty darn foolproof, so if you decide to branch out into new glutens it's worth a shot. In my experience baking and steaming are the easiest ways to go. I have yet to make what I would consider a perfect simmered seitan, but I haven't tried it that often because they come out so nice when baked or steamed. :)


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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Sun Oct 07, 2012 12:19 am 
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I was very nervous too. I kept reading so many people messing up their seitan. But I made the pepperoni from Vegan on the Cheap, and it was great, and I never really had a fail. (except when I made the Moo-Free Cutlets, and I think it's bacause I actually forgot to add some flour IN. so not the Gluten flour's fault) :)

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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2012 9:08 am 
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It turned out amazing! This may be my favorite thing I've ever made. And it was so easy! And they really taste like breakfast sausages. I kind of can't believe that I actually made them. I made sausage! Like, I'm eating sausage and it's not store bought. I actually made it with my own two hands. Wheeeee!!!

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Ain't no guarantees in life, and nothing that comes out of my vagina can change that. - Erika Soyf*cker

I'd rather have a cupcake and a matte stomach. - Desdemona


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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2012 9:17 am 
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I know, it's an amazing feeling right!

This is why we order our gluten in huge 10 pound bags. So much cheaper and tastier than the store-bought stuff.

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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2012 9:36 am 
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It's like magic! Pictures over here.

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Ain't no guarantees in life, and nothing that comes out of my vagina can change that. - Erika Soyf*cker

I'd rather have a cupcake and a matte stomach. - Desdemona


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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2012 12:37 pm 
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Glad your seitan worked out! Even if it's unfair you nailed it on the first try. I think everyone should have to have one batch of brainy-seitan before they get good at it.

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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2012 5:50 pm 
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Hehe... beginner's luck, maybe? I think it might have to do with the foolproofness of Julie's recipe. Now that I'm not afraid to try using gluten, there's a good chance that there's some brainy seitan at some point in my future.

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Ain't no guarantees in life, and nothing that comes out of my vagina can change that. - Erika Soyf*cker

I'd rather have a cupcake and a matte stomach. - Desdemona


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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2012 7:59 am 
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Yay! Congratulations on success! I'm so happy for you!

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 Post subject: Re: Help me get over my fear of gluten...
PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2012 11:58 am 
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Thanks, R.O.! That success gave me the confidence I needed to try two other things I've been kind of intimidated by: using agar agar, and baking with flaxseed.

Next on the list of things I want to tackle: baking with yeast. :)

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