Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Seitan and beet greens

Tonight's simple meal involved a loaf of seitan sausage and a cooked beat-green salad.

Results from Seitan Experiments:
  1. Knead by hand. The electric mixer makes the gluten too stringy, and it does not form a cohesive log when you go to shape it. Hand-kneading if very easy with this much gluten.
  2. I think it would have been better to shape a number of smaller sausages, rather than the one giant log.
  3. Real ground meat has bits of fat. I tried mashing some pine nuts in the mortar and pestle, but I did not include them until the end, once the sausage was already glutenized; I think they would work if included and distributed into the dry ingredients.

Beat Green Procedure
Upon starting to cook, vegetables become brilliantly colored. They lose their colors as the cell walls degrade and the colors leech, but more immediately vegetables are acidic, and the acid works to dull the colors. Blanching (quick submersion in already -boiling water) and steaming are both very fast ways to cook, and continually rinse the acids off of vegetables; as such, they tend to yield the best-colored vegetables.

We had heads of yellow and red beats, and the mix of greens was particularly festive. Steam, and meanwhile mix in a large bowl: 1 tsp lemon marmalade, 1/2 tsp mustard, 1/4 tsp soy sauce, 1 tsp olive oil, 1 tsp red wine, and 1/8 tsp salt. Add steamed greens, toss well, and transfer to serving bowl.

I enjoyed a very tasty dinner with my boyfriend. He brought ice cream, since we both have sore throats. I'm completely satisfied with food right now.

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