Thursday, September 06, 2007

Experimentation...

So my first experiment with seitan went well. Aside from snacking on the Seitan o' Greatness, we had it on pizza (which was yummy!). Mainly, though, I cubed it, cooked it in a mushroom gravy and stirred in some peas. Then we poured it over garlicky mashed potatoes, and served it alongside glazed carrots. It was good, especially for a dreary day, but I think the So'G is better in something like pizza.

In one of the library cookbooks I saw a recipe for vegan crepes. I wanted crepes for breakfast the next morning, and I know they are better when the batter sits, so I made it the night before. The recipe called for gram flour. I'd heard someone somewhere say that gram flour is just ground-up chickpeas, so I thought I would use some 'besan' chickpea flour that I just got. Well, I mixed it up, half chick-pea flour and half wholemeal spelt flour. I added a pinch of some stevia that I've dried, and then stuck my finger in to see if it was sweet enough. Sweet Baby Jesus, the taste I got in my mouth was terrible. It tasted like falafel mix before it gets cooked. The chickpea flavour was overwhelming! I was tempted to tip it out and start again with plain flour, but Andy wanted to keep it.

The next day we had cereal for breakfast, but then made the chickpea crepes for lunch. We filled them with a mixture of spinach, mushrooms, jarred spaghetti sauce and a bit of nutritional yeast. It was okay... pretty good, actually, but next time I think I'll use a lower ratio of chickpea to other flour!
One of the things I've missed since moving to Townsville is tempeh. You can buy only one brand in the shops here, and it is this terrible mushy brown lump of yuck. We ate it one time and couldn't do it again. So when I placed my order on the Organic Buyer's Network, I thought I would order a block and see if it was any better. At first glance, I could tell it was heaps better--the texture felt nutty even through the package. I combined my craving for tempeh with Andy's craving for sweet and sour with some fresh veggies and jasmine rice:

The verdict: I thought the tempeh was heaps better, but not the best I've ever had. Andy thought it was good, but didn't think it was any better than tofu. He seemed to feel the same about the seitan. I'm going to keep experimenting, though! I've just been given a recipe for chicken-style seitan by the lovely Veganista, and I have a few more recipes that I've seen on the internet to try out before we settle on a favourite!

11 comments:

Veganista said...

Theresa! Just saw your comment on my blog, and I'm so excited you might be coming to Canberra later this year. :) I owe you an email actually--thanks for your reply to mine earlier this week.

As for the food in these posts--delish! I know what you mean about chickpea flour though. When I cooked fronch toast a while ago I made the mistake of absently licking some of the milky-besan mix off a fingertip. Bleah!

Emmie said...

I love chickpeas! Although I guess it's not as nice when their flavour overpowers everything else. I need to use up my bag of gram flour soon..

Vegetation said...

Tee hee, I did the same thing as veganista!! Blech! But those crepes look great!

And that tempeh, another thing I love that I can't have. That one looks way better than the brown thing I got from the local supermarket though.

urban vegan said...

You sure do eat healthily...very inspiring!

Johanna3 said...

love your experimentation!

nice photos!

Katie said...

Your blog is making me hungry!

Vicki's Vegan Vice said...

I think yours & Andy's cravings combine nicely!! The sweet & sour dish looks fabulous. :)

Amy said...

Good luck with future crepe experiments! I have a crepe maker but the recipe that comes with it is full o'butter. And other recipes may not be the right consistency to slide off the crepe maker. Anyway, I've found that leftovers stuffed in crepes= much better than leftovers by themselves.

the pleasantly plump vegan said...

experimentation is awesome, especially in the kitchen. i have been craving crepes. i may have to make some now. i just have to read yr blog and get inspired to cook. thanks for that!

Kumudha said...

chickpea flour is called as besan in India. It is used to make fritters, with veggies such as onions, potatoes. these fritters are known as bajjis ,pakoras and pakodas, are a very popular snack item.

bazu said...

That last photo is stunning! Now I'm hungry!