Corned seitan and stir fried cabbage with fried potatoes

corned_beef_and_cabbageWhen I first came up with the idea for this, I figured I'd find a recipe online for the corned seitan, fry up some cabbage and potatoes and, badda bing, badda boom, I'm out. It didn't turn out to be quite that simple.

First off, let me say this is a vegan recipe. Most corned beef is made from brisket and, having cooked a number of briskets back in my barbeque days, I don't think stir frying a piece of brisket is going to produce anything edible. If you really wanted to do a corned beef stir fry, I'd suggest starting with a cut of beef more amiable to stir frying, such as a round steak, and try corning that.

I started with the corned seitan recipe found here. Now I've made Chef McCarthy's recipes before and they were fine, but something went horribly wrong with this one. I don't know if I made a mistake or there was a typo in the write up, but the texture was not good. I did like the flavor so I decided to steal the seasoning and put it into one of my regular seitan recipes.

Corned "beef" seitan
Cuisine: Irish
Dry ingredients
  • 1½ tablespoons coarsely ground fennel seed
  • 1½ tablespoons coarsely ground caraway seed
  • 1½ tablespoons onion powder
  • 1½ tablespoons paprika
  • ¾ tablespoon salt
  • big pinch of ground cloves
  • big pinch of ground black pepper
  • 6.5 oz package of vital wheat gluten
  • 4 tablespoons of all-purpose flour
Wet ingredients
  • ¾ cup water
  • 4 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon light soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons vegetarian Worcestershire sauce.
  1. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.
  2. In large bowl, sift the dry ingredients together. In a separate bowl, combine the wet ingredients.
  3. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix thoroughly. Knead for a couple of minutes to develop the gluten.
  4. Form into a log shape about 6 to 8 inches in length and wrap tightly in foil. Bake for 90 minutes then unwrap and leave out to cool.
The gluten and flour together should be 1½ cups.

I don't eat a lot of potatoes, they're way too carby for a diabetic. So when I do eat them, I'm willing to spend a bit of time and effort making them the best I can. I'm taking my inspiration here from Heston Blumenthal's Triple Cooked Chips. If you've ever seen Heston, you'll know he's not about making things simple, just taste good. I have simplified things a bit, I'm pan frying the potatoes and I'm only cooking them twice.
Twice cooked fried potatoes
  • 2 russet potatoes
  • Salt
  • Oil for frying
  1. Peel and cube the potatoes.
  2. Place into salted boiling water for about 15 to 20 minutes. The potatoes are done when their edges begin to look rough. Drain.
  3. At this point Heston puts the potatoes into the freezer. I just put mine outside, there's got to be some advantage to living in Indiana in March!. Leave them there for about an hour, the idea is to drive off all the moisture you can.
  4. Heat your wok to the smoking point and swirl the oil in. Use more oil for this than you would for stir frying.
  5. Add the potatoes to the wok and allow to fry for a minute. Stir them around. Repeat until they reach a nice golden color.

Now we can move on to the actual stir fry portion of the program. This is a fairly typical cabbage stir fry, about the only thing I did out of the ordinary was add a bit of hot pepper to jazz things up a bit and add a little color as well. You can use more carrot if you like, carrots are not my favorite vegetable.
Stir fried cabbage
  • 1 small head cabbage, shredded
  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 carrot, minced
  • 1 pepper, thinly sliced (optional)
  • Oil for stir frying
  1. Heat wok to the smoking point, swirl in oil.
  2. Add onion, carrot and pepper, if using. Stir fry for a minute
  3. Add cabbage and stir fry until cabbage is just beginning to show signs of browning, about two minutes.

We're almost done! One last problem though, the seitan, because it's baked, is dry. And there's not much liquid in this dish. I do remember having a mustard-y, horseradish-y sauce when I was in Ireland. So let's see if we can duplicate that. And if this looks a bit like the Banh Mi sauce from earlier, it is.
Mustard Horseradish sauce
  • 1 cup grapeseed oil
  • ½ cup non-dairy milk
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1½ tablespoons yellow mustard
  • 1 tablespoon prepared horseradish
  • 1½ teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  1. Put the first six ingredients in the bowl of a food processor
  2. Drizzle in the vinegar and process until the sauce reaches the desired consistency.

So there we are. Hopefully you can find some ideas for something you'd like to fix in here. And happy St Patrick's Day!

About the Author:
As a vegan and a diabetic, I am very much aware of the challenges faced by friends and family as they attempt to deal with dietary restrictions.
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