Seitan Saturday: Burgers

Seitan is a versatile ingredient. You can use them in soups, stews, make steaks or ribs for barbecue, make vegan sausages etc. Seitan is also great for burgers. The seitan recipe below is a variation of these awesome seitan ribz from FatFree Vegan Kitchen -blog. My sister’s comment about these burgers: “They were good. Yum yum.”


Barbecue Seitan Burgers

2,4 dl vital wheat gluten
2 tsp smoked paprika
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
1 tsp garlic powder
1,8 dl water
2 tbsp tahini
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp liquid smoke

3 tbsp ketchup
2 tbsp syrup/molasses
1 tbsp oil
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
0,5 tsp salt
1 tsp liquid smoke
1 tsp strong mustard
chili powder or chopped chili pepper (optional)

burger buns
lettuce, tomato, onion etc.
vegan mayo, ketchup, mustard etc.

Combine vital wheat gluten, paprika, nutritional yeast and garlic powder in a bowl. Combine water, tahini, soy sauce and liquid smoke in another bowl and pour onto gluten mixture. Knead couple of minutes. Divide into 6 pieces and form them into flat “steaks”. Bake 20 minutes in 175 Celsius degrees.

Mix the marinade ingredients together and put them into a plastic bag with baked seitan. Rub the marinade all over seitans and refrigerate 30 minutes or few hours.

Fry seitan on a pan in oil, or in the summertime you can grill/barbecue them. Put a piece of seitan inside a burger bun with your favourite burger fillings.



Seitan Saturday: Roast with Juniper Berries

On Wednesday we promised to post recipe for this seitan. It’s actually a combination of two recipes, with some changes. The basic roast is from Inna Somersalo’s book “Yllin kyllin”, and the marinade is from Kasviskeittiössä-blog. The roast gets better when it cools down, so it’s best if you make it a day before serving.


Seitan Roast with Juniper Berries and Rosemary

4 dl vital wheat gluten
2 dl gram flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp smoked paprika
½ tsp dry ginger
1 tsp garlic powder
0,5 dl soy sauce
0,5 dl oil
2,5 dl water

15 dried juniper berries
5 pepper corns
2 garlic cloves
1 tbsp dried rosemary or some fresh rosemary leaves
0,5 tsp salt
0,5 tsp sugar
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp oil
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
0,5 dl water

Mix all the dry ingredients in a bowl. Mix oil, soy sauce and water in another bowl and combine with the dry ingredients. Knead couple of minutes. Form a roast.

Grind the juniper berries and peppercorns. Mince the garlic cloves. Mix all the marinade ingredients together and put into a plastic bag with seitan roast. Marinade overnight. Wrap the roast in aluminium foil and bake 1,5 hours in 175 Celsius degrees.


Seitan Saturday: Stroganoff

New vegan fraiche by Oatly is available in shops, at least in Finland and Sweden, maybe somewhere else too. It’s oat based and a bit slimy compared to soy based products, but it’s not as slimy as Yosa yogurts. The taste is more sour than plain soy yogurt and can be used in hot and cold dishes. We bought a tub and used half of it to make this Stroganoff. We’ve previously used oat cream and oat fraiche didn’t taste different in this recipe. But I think a spoonful of it on a bowl of borscht or pureed vegetable soup would be great. I bet it also works great in dips etc.


Seitan Stroganoff

2 balls seitan
1 onion
5 dl chopped forest mushrooms or handful of dried funnel chanterelles
2-4 tbsp oil
2 tbsp margarine
3 tbsp wheat flour
water or vegetable broth
2 tsp mustard
salt, pepper
1 dl oat or soy cream or fraiche
dill or parsley (optional)

Dice the seitan. Peel and chop onion. If you use dried mushrooms, soak them in hot water until soft. If you use fresh mushrooms, heat them on a dry pan until the water comes out of them. Discard the water or continue heating until water is evaporated. Heat 2 tbsp oil in a pan and sauté onion and mushrooms until onion is soft and translucent. Transfer to a sauce pan. Add more oil if needed and fry seitan until browned. Transfer to the saucepan.

Melt the margarine on the pan and add flour. Fry until brown. Add some water (hot water is easier to stir with the flour) and stir well, add more water and stir well etc. until you get the desired thickness for the sauce. Add to the sauce pan, stir well and simmer 5-10 minutes. Add cream (and herbs if using) and season with salt and pepper, simmer couple of minutes more and serve with potatoes or other side dishes.


Wine Wednesday: Seitan Burgundy

Beef bourguignon was originally a peasant food. For reason or another, the burgundian peasants decided to simmer their food in red wine. Maybe it was a good harvest year for grapes, or maybe something else, who knows? Anyway, this is a vegan version of said recipe, substituting beef for seitan and steering clear of gourmet cuisine influences. Keep it simple.


Seitan Burgundy

3 balls basic seitan
2 garlic cloves
big handful of dried funnel chanterelles + water for soaking or 5 dl fresh mushrooms
1 big onion
3,5 dl red wine (half a bottle)
4 dl seitan cooking broth (or vegetable broth)
2 tsp thyme
4 tbsp wheat flour
4 tbsp water

Cube the seitan. Peel and mince the garlic cloves. Soak the funnel chanterelles in water. Peel the onion and cut into wedges. Heat some oil in a pot and fry seitan and garlic until nicely browned. Remove from the pot. Add more oil if needed and fry mushrooms for few minutes. Remove from the pot. Put the seitan back to pot and add wine, broth, onion and thyme. Simmer about an hour, stirring couple of times and adding more broth if needed. Stir in the mushrooms and season with pepper. Mix the flour and water together and slowly pour to the pot, stirring constantly. Bring to boil and simmer 30 minutes or longer, stirring now and then. Serve with potatoes (or pasta or rice).


Seitan Saturday: No-Kebab

Kebab. It’s some sort of thinly sliced animal stuff, popular in turkic regions and pretty much everywhere nowadays, thanks to immigration. I’ve never even had it, nor do I plan do (such surprise!), but as a medium of food it’s pretty nice. At least for serving it in a pita or in a wrap. Besides, variation is always nice, right? We also have a local “delicacy” which involves kebab, and which we’ll maybe veganise for nobody’s pleasure at some point, but more on that later…

Home made pita filled with vegan kebab, cabbage-tahini salad, tomato, pickles, kebab dressing and hot pepper sauce.


Seitan Kebab

The original kebab recipe in Finnish is in Decapitated foodblog.

3 dl vital wheat glute
1,5 dl chickpea flour (gram flour)
0,5 tsp salt
2 tsp pepper
3 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp ketchup
1 tbsp sriracha
1,5 dl water
0,5 tbsp oil
water and soy sauce for boiling (or only water)

0,5 dl soy sauce
0,25 dl balsamic vinegar
0,5 dl water
pinch of salt and pepper
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp chili powder
1 tbsp tomato puree
1 tsp basil
1 garlic clove, minced

Combine vital wheat gluten, chickpea flour, salt and pepper. In another bowl combine soy sauce, ketchup, sriracha, water and oil. Add to the four mixture and knead couple of minutes. Add more water if you can’t form a dough. Shape into a elongated loaf. Boil 15 minutes in water seasoned with soy sauce.

Wrap the boiled seitan in foil and bake 30 minutes in 175 Celsius degrees. Turn the heat to 200 degrees and bake 5 more minutes. Allow to cool until you’re able to handle it.

Whisk all the marinade ingredients together. Cut the seitan into long and thin strips. Marinade the strips at least 20 minutes.

Put the marinaded seitan on a baking sheet and bake about 5 minutes in 225 Celsius degrees. Or heat them on a frying pan.


Carib’ Jerk Seitan

This year’s Vegan MoFo is nearing its end and as always, the best things come last. For an ultimate Saturday experience we have something all over the Carib’. Jerk(y) seitan, rice and peas and a nice salad. The marinade for the seitan is very spicy and if you’re not accustomed to hot foods, you might want to adjust the amount of chili to your taste. The marinade recipe is from Michael Harwood’s book Super Hot Chili Pepper Cookbook. The original recipe uses chicken, which we substituted with seitan from FatFree Vegan Kitchen blog. Rice and peas were available pretty much everywhere when we were in Barbados and they serve as a nice very protein-rich supplement for the spicy seitan. And on the top of it all, the salad brings some freshness to the whole package.


Jerk Seitan

1 batch seitan ribz

jerk marinade:
1 small habanero pepper
6 lemon drop peppers
6 riot peppers
1 tsp ground all spice
1 tsp ginger powder or 1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
3 garlic cloves
1 small shallot
1 tbsp brown sugar
2 tsp strong mustard
0, 5 tsp cinnamon
3 tbsp oil
3 tbsp apple vinegar
1 tbsp lemon juice
salt, black pepper
oil for frying

Chop the chili peppers coarsely and quickly blend them. Add rest of the ingredients and blend until smooth. Put the seitan and marinade into a plastic bag and rub the marinade on the seitan pieces. Marinade in a refrigerator couple of hours.

Heat some oil in a frying pan and fry the seitans on both sides until browned.

Simple Rice and beans

6 dl water
1 tsp thyme
2 tsp vegetable broth powder
4 dl cooked black beans
3 dl rice

Bring the water to boil and add rest of the ingredients. Simmer until all the water has been absorbed (about 20 minutes).


The Pumpkin Pie of Mari El

It’s Sunday and time for the “free choice”-day. As our first week has been about the eastern parts of Europe, we’ll finish it off with something truly special: a pie from the Mari El Republic.

Maris are of the same Fenno-Ugric language family as Finns are (earlier we covered another part of the same family, Hungarians) even though we live thousands of kilometers apart.  So, in a way they’re our eastern cousins or something like that. The Mari have their own republic within the Russian Federation, but are still under a campaign of heavy russificiation, with closures of many Mari language newspapers and such. If you wish to learn more of their struggles, click here for further reading.

Some time ago Ville Haapasalo, a popular actor in both Finland and Russia, hosted a new travelling tv-show called “Suomensukuiset 30 päivässä” (or “The Finnic people in 30 days”) where he travelled in various republics of Russia meeting Finnic people. In one episode he participated in baking this pie with local Mari women and it looked so great we just had to try to reverse-engineer the recipe. This is what we were able to decipher from the episode, if there are other unmentioned ingredients, we’re completely unaware of them. However the pie is very tasty even like this and puts your pumpkin harvest into great use!


Paluš (Палуш)

2 dl soy milk
1 tsp baking powder
0,5 tsp salt
5 dl wheat flour

2 dl rice
1 ball basic seitan
about 50 g margarine
4 dl pumpkin cubes

Mix soy milk, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Add enough wheat flour to form a soft dough.

Bring water to boil, add the rice and cook 10 minutes. The rice should be only half cooked. Dice the seitan. Melt about 1 tbsp margarine on a frying pan and fry seitan until lightly browned. Mix rice, seitan and pumpkin together and season with salt.

Roll about 3/4 of the dough into a large circle. The circle should be big enough to cover bottom and edges of a oven proof dish with some dough overlapping on edges. Put the dough to the dish and add the filling on it. Put lumps of margarine on top of the filling. Roll the rest of the dough into a smaller circle, put it on top of the pie. Pinch the edges of the doughs together tightly to create a decorative edge. Bake in 175-200 Celsius degrees 30-40 minutes or until golden brown.


According to the tv-show, this pie is eaten at various festivities. It’s also quite filling, so if you plan on not freezing leftovers or so, invite a couple of friends over and have a good time.


It’s also a bit hard – or at least was to us – to keep the pie in one piece after cutting it. Maybe that is how it’s supposed to be.