Friday, March 23, 2012

Country Fried Seitan, Sesame Kale, Fried Zucchini & "Fried" Rice

This is one of the many times the Hubby has come home and said "Mucho Hambre Mami", meaning "I'm very hungry honey!".  Insert roll of the eyes here.  Since when is he not hungry?  Seriously?  It's scary thinking what it's going to be like if/when there's another guy added to the family - like a son!  They would eat me out of house and home!  I always tell people I have to cook for at least 3 people (Hubby counting as 2 people)!  Anyway, knowing that he loves rice and can literally eat it everyday, I made some fried  - more like sauteed - because I already had some cooked rice in the fridge.  And since I was making country fried seitan, which takes a while to make, I'm not going to lie, I wanted to make something that would be a little simpler.  I got this recipe idea from the Vegan Yum Yum cookbook.  The original recipe wasn't exactly super tasty, so after messing around with the spices a few times, I hit it and now it's amazing.  Since the thing that takes the longest time is mixing together the spiced flour, I have wised up a little and made a giant batch of it and now keep a Ziploc of it in the refrigerator at all times so that whenever Hubbs or I have a craving, it's not as far away.  Also always having a batch of homemade boiled seitan in the freezer definitely helps.  (After I finish with this recipe, I will have emptied my supply and am going to have to replenish it soon.)  I've also got the fried zucchini down and can whip that up ridiculously easily.   I have figured out that the key to making a quick meal is to have things ready before hand to help you out and save time for those days when you're really busy.

Country Fried Seitan, Sesame Kale, Fried Zucchini & "Fried" Rice:

Country Fried Seitan, Sesame Kale, Fried Zucchini, Fried Rice

Serves about 4, with extra seitan left over

Fried Zucchini

Fried Rice:
2 cups cooked rice, cold
1/4 cup shredded carrots
1/4 cup green peas, cooked
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon tamari/shoyu
1/4 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
1/2 small onion, small diced, about 1/2 cup
2 green onions, sliced

Country Fried Seitan:
1/2 - 3/4 lb. homemade seitan steaks

Spiced Flour Mixture:
1 1/2 cups unbleached flour
4 teaspoons baking powder (yes, baking powder!  It will make the seitan crispy)
1 teaspoon dried parsley
1 teaspoon seasoned salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon boullion powder
1/4 teaspoon dry mustard powder
2 pinches cayenne, optional, but a good idea

Wet Seasoned Mixture:
1/3 cup seasoned flour
1/2 cup filtered water
3 tablespoons prepared yellow mustard

1.  Begin by getting everything ready for the fried seitan.  Mix together the flour and all the spices.  Set aside.
2.  Begin making the rice.  In a wok over medium-high heat, add the olive oil and let it become hot.  Once it's hot, add the onion and carrot and saute until the onion is fragrant, about 3-4 minutes.  Add the peas and stir for a minute.  Add the rice and "fry" aka saute for about 10 minutes, letting the grains become a little crispy.  Add the rest of the ingredients, being sure to combine thoroughly.  Continue to cook for an additional couple of minutes.
3.  Back to the country fried seitan.  Set up a station: 1 bowl will have the wet seasoned mixture, the second bowl will have some seasoned flour and a clean plate should end this assembly line. 
4.  Place a large pan over medium heat and cover the bottom with a layer or no-taste oil, like canola.  Allow the oil to become hot.  In the meantime, prepare the seitan.
5.  Assembly line:  keep one hand for the wet mix and the other hand for the dry mix.  Squeeze out any liquid that may be in the seitan into the sink.  Dip the seitan pieces into the wet mixture, coating well.  Shake off excess liquid.  Now place the seitan into the spiced flour.  Cover every surface of the seitan with the flour.  Shake off excess flour and place on clean plate.  Repeat with remaining seitan. 
6.  The oil should now be hot.  Carefully place the coated pieces of seitan into the oil, cooking for several minutes on each side, until browned and crispy.  Once browned on both sides, drain on paper towel covered plates. 
7.  To serve, place portions of each item on the plates, and be prepared to serve seconds.  Delicious!



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