Seitan – Vegan cold cuts

Βέγκαν σαλάμι πεπερόνι χωρίς γλουτένη - Veganinathens.com

Gluten-free, vegan pepperoni

One of the most amazing things one will discover following a plant-rich diet is that it surely doesn’t limit the range of recipes and dining experiences one may have, as soon as there is a great variety of plant-based dishes that are as tasty and memorable as the animal-based. Besides the creation of composite recipes, the use of spices and the art of cooking are not privileges of those who consume animal products, but have their roots back in the human history and the desire to turn a vital need –food- into a delight.

Gluten-free, vegan salami, peperoni - veganinathens.com

So trying to find a gourmet stuffing for our sandwiches, a topping for our pizzas or our pasta, I occasionally experiment with several recipes for vegan cold cuts. Here I wanted to make something easy, delicious and nutritious without gluten or hard-to-find ingredients and so I ended on this vegan pepperoni. Usually I make it with dry fava-beans –a pulse that is very common in Greece, as I believe that their taste is engaged nicely with the spices, giving a delicious result. But if one cannot eat fava-beans or do not like them, he/she can simply use the same amount of other kinds of beans. Giant beans, especially black giant-beans, or any kind of red beans are good choices.

I prefer soaking and cooking the beans by myself, but if you like you can use canned beans as well.

Gluten-free, vegan salami, peperoni - veganinathens.com

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups fava beans or other kind of beans, cooked and drained
  • 3 tbsp chickpea flour
  • 3 tbsp rice flour or corn flour
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 6-7 sun-dried tomatoes in olive-oil, chopped
  • 4-5 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 spring onion, chopped
  • 3 tbsp vinegar
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 small chili pepper chopped
  • ½ tsp ground pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp ground dry chili
  • 8-10 green Kalamata olives pitted, cut into large pieces

Gluten-free, vegan salami, peperoni - Vegan in Athens

Method

  1. Place the beans in the food processor and process for a few minutes until mashed. Alternatively mash with a fork or the puree machine.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients except olives, and process for 1-2 more minutes until they incorporate.
  3. Finally add the olives and process lightly.
  4. Put the mixture on a large shit of baking paper and form into log, twisting the ends of the paper to seal into a tight sausage shape.
  5. Steam for 1 hour. If you don’t have a steamer, you can place it in a metal sieve that sits atop a large stockpot of boiling water, and cover it with the pot lid.
  6. Allow to cool before serve.

Βέγκαν σαλάμι πεπερόνι - Gluten-free, vegan salami, peperoni - Veganinathens.com

 

 

 

 

 

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Vegan, fat-free, homemade seitan salami - Βέγκαν, σπιτικό σαλάμι σεϊτάν - Veganinathens.com

Vegan seitan salami

Seitan is one of the vegan foods that I discovered when I started my wonderful journey into veganism. Seeking information about the big change in my life, I read numerous articles through the internet that recommended seitan as an excellent source of plant protein not only for vegans and vegetarians but also for omnivores who wish to reduce the consumption of animal proteins.

The first time I ate seitan, several years ago when I bought vegan sausages, I was a bit suspicious. However their taste and texture were interesting enough for me to want to have more. As their cost was relatively high, I tried several recipes in order to make my own vegan cold-cuts, experimenting with combinations of ingredients and spices. The amazing properties of seitan and especially its consistency, gave me the chance to reproduce some vegan cold-cuts alternatives such as vegan salami, vegan peperoni or even vegan sausages that are actually chewy, spicy and tasty, even more than their animal-derived counterparts.

Vegan, homemade seitan salami - Βέγκαν, σπιτικό σαλάμι σεϊτάν - Vegan in Athens

One of my favorite recipes for vegan cold-cuts is this fat-free, vegan salami. What I like is its strong, umami taste and aromas thanks to sun-dried tomato and spices, its firm consistency that allows to cut into thin slices easily without crushing and the fact that it can be used in many different recipes, just like any salami. When I make this vegan salami, I like to slice it and bake it for a while until the outer layer of each slice forms a nice, brown crust. These yummy slices make an appetizing stuffing for a sandwich or a topping to our homemade pizza. Moreover I’d definitely recommend mixing some vegan salami cubes in our spicy tomato spaghetti sauce for a delicious, protein-rich meal.

So if gluten is not an issue for you, this homemade, fat-free seitan salami can serve as a wonderful treat, any time you feel like having something that looks and tastes similar to junk-food, but actually is neither junk (OK maybe just a little bit 🙂 ) nor cruel.

Vegan, homemade seitan salami - Βέγκαν, σπιτικό σαλάμι σεϊτάν - Vegan in Athens

Ingredients

  • ½ cup slightly concentrated tomato juice (I use passata)
  • ½ cup lukewarm water
  • 1 cup wheat gluten
  • 1 tbsp prepared mustard
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika, ground
  • ½ tsp hot paprika, ground
  • 1 tsp oregano, ground
  • 1/2 -3/4 tsp salt
  • 2 sun-dried tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 2-3 tbsp chopped parsley or 1 tsp dried
  • 2-3 tbsp chopped dill or 1 tsp dried
  • 1 spring onion, chopped or 1 tsp dried onion

Vegan, homemade seitan salami - Βέγκαν, σπιτικό σαλάμι σεϊτάν - Vegan in Athens

Method
1. In a large bowl mix all the wet ingredients together, add the herbs, spices and wheat gluten and knead for a few minutes with your hands. The dough must be soft and non-sticky.
2. Shape the dough into an oblong log, put it on a piece of greaseproof paper (it must be large enough to wrap 2 times around your salami) and wrap dough into it, sealing the edges. Don’t worry about the shape; if you seal it tightly it will get the right shape after steaming.

Vegan, homemade seitan salami - Βέγκαν, σπιτικό σαλάμι σεϊτάν - Vegan in Athens

3. Steam for 1- 1 ½ hour. In case you have no steamer (I don’t), place over a pot with simmering water a metal colander, put the salami in it and steam.
4. Now your salami is ready but if you like it a little more chewy and crusty, after steaming, pierce the paper in several points and bake for 20-30 minutes in preheated oven at 200oC. However what I usually like to do is roasting or toasting each slice separately just before use.

Vegan, homemade seitan salami - Βέγκαν, σπιτικό σαλάμι σεϊτάν - Vegan in Athens

Note: Dried herbs is an excellent choice if you do not have fresh herbs available. After purchasing them (or drying your own), you can keep them in airtight glass jars for several months, in order to readily have a variety of herbs in your shelves, every time you need them.

Vegan, homemade seitan salami - Βέγκαν, σπιτικό σαλάμι σεϊτάν - Vegan in Athens

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