Monday, May 08, 2006

Jerk Seitan with Coconut Jasmine Rice

Well, it kind of ended up being a VwaV weekend as I tried two new recipes from my all-time favorite cookbook, Vegan with a Vengeance by Isa Chandra Moskowitz. I was invited to a Kentucky Derby party on Saturday, so I whipped up some Seitan & Herb Stuffed Mushrooms to take as an appetizer. Before I could make them though, I had to make my own homemade seitan from the recipe in the cookbook. It was a little time consuming, but the mushrooms ended up being really yummy and I think they were all gone in less than 10 minutes from the time that they were uncovered at the party. Everyone was asking about them and wondering what was in them. I can definitely say that they were a hit.

Then last night for dinner (and therefore for lunch today) I made the Jerk Seitan with Coconut Jasmine Rice. It's not a hard recipe. Basically all you do is slice up a couple of cups of your homemade seitan and then marinate it in a homemade jerk sauce and then cook it all with a bunch of onions and bell peppers. The cookbook just called for green peppers but me, being the lazy vegan that I am, opted to not even bother with slicing up a fresh onion and bell pepper and instead just dumped in a whole bag of chopped onion & 3 pepper blend from the freezer section of the grocery store. Everyone probably already knows about this stuff (I was probably the last one to know), but I just discovered this stuff a few months ago at Kroger. It's just a big bag of frozen chopped onions and red, yellow and green bell peppers. All the work is already done. The whole bag is usually on sale for 0.99 or something like that. They also have bags of just chopped onion and just chopped green pepper that are so convenient for keeping on hand in the freezer for whenever you just need a little bit of each and don't want to spend all that time chopping.

I was amazed when I tasted this dish last night. It is honestly one of the best things I have ever made. The seitan is just like slices of steak, and the jerk sauce is delicious. I've never made fancy rice like this either, but oh my gosh is it good. It's jasmine rice cooked up with some coconut milk. There was also a cinnamon stick in there while it cooked. Toward the end of the cooking you add some fresh lime zest and then you top it with some unsweetened coconut that you toast yourself right on the stovetop. This stuff is really delicious. This would be a really good vegan dish to take to a dinner or potluck if you needed to contribute something. I can't imagine anyone eating this and not loving it. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

I brought a lot of the seitan & rice today, so I really didn't need too much more. I just tossed in some raw walnuts and the last of the raspberries that I got at the store last week. They probably wouldn't have made it too many more days in the fridge, so I thought it would be best to put them in the lunchbox today and get rid of them before they ruin.

This was my first time making my own seitan from scratch. It's really not hard. It just takes a little time, but if you do it on the weekend you can end up with a big batch of it to use all week long in who knows what kind of recipes. And it's a WHOLE lot cheaper than buying it already made at the store, and tastier too! You will probably see one or two more uses of seitan this week in the lunchbox as I try and use up my stash. You can freeze it for later use, but I don't think I will have any problem using all of mine up this week, one way or another, either in dinners or lunches, or both.

Well, that's it for Monday. I didn't make it to the Thai place again Friday night, but I am seriously considering trying some Thai food at home very soon. Maybe tonight. Maybe for lunch tomorrow. Who knows?

Thanks for checking in. Have a GREAT Monday and I'll see you tomorrow!

10 comments:

Theresa said...

I've only had seitan once (I know, I'm a bad vegan freak), probably 3 years ago, and I was totally freaked out by the texture. It was in my university dining hall, and I honestly couldn't tell whether or not I was eating meat. The sauce on it was delicious, but the meaty texture was so weird! I keep telling myself to give it a shot again, especially when I can cook it for myself, but I'm too lazy, I think. Maybe I'll try out the jerk seitan...

Yummy lunch!

Jane M said...

True seiten takes some effort to make but oh I agree with you it is well worth the effort. I usually make up sizable batches and freeze some for quick use later. I haven't tried that recipe yet but will have to give it a try now!

Harini said...

Hi Kenny,

Even though I'm a vegetarian, I got hooked on your blog about a month ago - and ordered Vegan with a Vengeance since you talk about it all the time..last night I made the mustard-maple glazed potatoes with string beans. Kids wolfed it down with a side of rice/brown lentil and feta. Thanks!

flyoverveggie said...

I love your web site and your wonderful ideas! I am a long time vegetarian (making recent vegan attempts) in the midwest so I love that you are in Tennessee! Vegetarians are everywhere! I also am liking your great work at eating healthier and making good vegan choices. Have you been feeling better since switching to a healthier more raw focused diet? Have you lost weight? Anyway both you and the Vegan Lunchbox are checked by me daily and I am ordering my laptop system soon!

Michelle

Tanya Kristine said...

that sounds delish! who doesn't love coconut milk in anything, HUH???

i made a yummy udon noodle salad from How it all Vegan. i have a pix on my website too if you want to see it...mm mm good!

Anonymous said...

I mean this kindly. . . please don't think I'm flaming you or anything. . . but did you take the opportunity at the Kentucky Derby party to point out the exploitation of animals for that "sport"? Of course, you may not be vegan for animal rights reasons. . . I would just feel uncomfortable attending an event built around animal exploitation.
Otherwise, I truly enjoy your blog!
--K

karen said...

Homemade seitan from VwaV is a little bit of work, but it is so good. I sometimes brown it in a cast iron pan with a bit of oil and eat it without sauce because it tastes so good... The broth can be reused for soup or sometimes I make more seitan and use it again.

kennyboy said...

Yeah, I love seitan. It is SO much like meat though it is weird. I know there are vegans who refuse to eat it because it is too much like meat for them.

I never thought of reusing the broth. That's a good idea.

As for the Kentucky Derby, yeah, definitely NOT VEGAN! Luckily, the thing was ending (all two minutes of it or however long it takes) pretty much right when I got there. I didn't get into any discussions about the derby with anyone. I did however speak to several people about veganism, brought about by them trying the food I brought, and I even had a couple of people ask me for some more information, so I provided them with copies of "Why Vegan?" from www.veganoutreach.org

I could have said more, especially about the derby, but all that was over by the time I really started speaking to people. I know I could have said more, but at least I did say something, and left a few people with some information and images that might make them think...

You're right though. The exploitation of horses for entertainment is nothing to celebrate.

Brooke said...

I attempted to make the homemade seitan from VwaV over the weekend, and it turned out icky, but I blame that on the chef (me), not the recipe. I think there was too much liquid in my gluten dough, and it kinda just fell apart in the simmering liquid, even though I did exactly what the recipe said. I will try it again, I really wanted it to work, especially after reading so many good responses to it. The Jerk Seitan sounds (and looks) yummy!

kennyboy said...

Yeah, I think that recipe might be picky based on some people's experiences over at theppk.com

Oh, and flyoverveggie, the battery died in my scale so I don't have a number, but I have had a couple of people mention that I looked like I had lost weight, so maybe I have.

As far as feeling better, the main thing I have noticed is how I don't need nearly as much sleep as I used to. I used to nap every evening and still have trouble getting up when the alarm went off.

Now I don't need naps usually. And I wake up every morning at 5AM wide awake, long before the alarm goes off.

I think I was eating way too many simple carbs before and they were really making me sluggish. I still probably eat too many carbs, but not nearly as much as I did, plus I choose whole wheat now whenever possible.