Monday, November 3, 2008

Seitan Madras

When Vegan Mom and I were married over a decade ago, we quickly fell into a fairly mundane weekly routine of meat-based dishes. We then decided to try a vegetarian diet to force ourselves to explore new cuisines, methods, and ideas. It was then that we discovered Indian food, and it remains my favourite cuisine.

- 3 cups cubed seitan (or 1 pkg of tofu, cubed, or one can of chickpeas)
- 1 six oz can tomato paste
- 1/4 tsp ground fenugreek
- 1/2 tsp ground fennel
- 1" piece ginger, minced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 tsp coriander
- 2 tsp chili powder
- 1/2 tsp tumeric
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 cups water
- 2 tbsp oil
- 2 onions, halved and sliced
- 4 curry leaves
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro

1. Mix together tomato paste, spices (including garlic and ginger), lemon juice, salt, and water.
2. Heat oil over medium heat in a large frying pan and fry onions and curry leaves until deep golden brown (about 15 mins). Add seitain (or tofu, or chickpeas) and fry for 3-4 mins.
3. Add tomato-spice mixture to the pan and bring to bubbling. Add cilantro, reduce heat, and simmer, uncovered, until sauce is thickened (15-20 mins).


Vegetation said...

Yum! I love Indian food too (even if I am a total wimp and sub any chilli for paprika :P). This sounds delicious.

Lisa (Show Me Vegan) said...

This looks saucy and delicious. I think my husband would really like it too. I'm not familiar with curry leaves. I assume I could use curry powder to substitute?

Nisi said...

I found some pre-fried gluten at the chinese grocery store... I can't think of what to put it in. Would it work here, do you think?

Nisi said...

I found some pre-fried gluten at the Chinese grocery, but I don't know what to do with it. Do you think it could work here? It's very crispy looking.

carrie said...

YUM!! I am making this next week!!!

Ian said...

Indian is my favorite cuisine as well. Although I didn't used to like it, I now don't understand when people say they don't like it. It's so delicious.

Urban Environmentalist said...

This looks delicious. I cannot wait to try it! Thank you Thank you Thank you!

Troy said...

Indian food is the best! Thai food is a close second for me. Thanks for the recipe it looks great!

Angie said...

Dear VeganDad,

How much tomato paste do you use? Cans over here come in various sizes.

Katie said...

You wrote "1 can tomato paste". I've seen everything from 6oz cans to 32oz cans. What size are we talking here?

Recipe looks yummy!

Reni said...

This looks really yummy. Do you eat it by itself or with something else?

mustardseed said...

hey vegandad! Awesome recipe! I just made baingan bhurta today, a roasted eggplant curry.

I can't wait to try yours too! Is fenugreek replaceable?

carrie said...

What size can of tomato paste did you use? Also, would there be a good substitute for the curry leaves? I've never seen them in my store. We do have an Indiana market, but it's quite far away and I don't get in there much.

Vegan Dad said...

To all,
There is no real substitute for curry leaves--they are kind of like bay leaves in that respect. However, you can leave them out and still enjoy a very nice dish.

Any kind of seitan or tofu would work well in this dish, I think.

I amended the tomato paste in the recipe. I use the small can--5.5 to 6 oz.

Vegan Dad said...

Whoops--forgot the address all the comments. Fenugreek is not replaceable, but you could do without it. It will make for a less complex flavour, but still passable. Get some if you can.

Like every Indian dish I cook, I eat this with basmati rice.

Bianca said...

Strangely, I've never even thought of using seitan in an Indian dish. It seems so obvious and delicious now. Thanks for the idea!

Anonymous said...

Looks delish, will try it soon! Keep the vegan Indian recipes coming, please!

ned lee said...

made it two nights ago, unreal, used cannellini beans because i didn't have much else, tasted fantastic, thank you kind sir!

allularpunk said...

yes! this looks wonderful.

Anonymous said...

i made this for lunch today and we loved it. thank you!


mom said...

This was a big hit! Hearty and lots of flavour with a stick to your ribs satisfaction.

susank said...

I really like this recipe - had it for dinner with ww naan, rice, and spicy cauliflower. yum!

Tania said...

I found this sauce to be a little too acidic, even though I added just a tad less than the recommended 1/4 cup of lemon juice and it was also a tad on the salty side. Maybe the tomato paste I used has more of an acidic taste and more salt added than the Canadian kind (I've found there to be some dramatic difference between Canadian & US foods in particular ketchup!). I added some brown sugar, even honey plus maybe 1/2 cup of coconut milk to mellow out the taste. It helped but didn't quite hit my Indian food craving. But I am used to the restaurant stuff. Thanks for the base sauce though!

Katie said...

Finally got around to making this today, it was delicious!
The fenugreek qualifies as a "indian" spice, most of the others are neutral, but the lemon and cilantro and coriander all worked to give this more of a mexican flavor IMHO.
I used smart grounds, a little less lemon then called for, and left out the salt.
But it was delicious!

Karen said...

I was bummed that I didn't have cilantro, and I haven't been able to find curry leaves, but this was so delicious anyway! I didn't have any fresh seitan (it goes quickly in my home!) so I used canned from the Asian market. I also threw some chick peas in. I wasn't sure about the acidity at first, but after eating it, it was perfect. Thanks for this recipe!

Unknown said...

This was great. My boyfriend and I both enjoyed it very much but we did wind up adding a tiny bit of agave to make it a bit sweeter. Excellent. We ate the whole pan in one sitting and felt great about it because it's not soaking in ghee or oil of some sort like the Indian restaurants we've been to (Indian is still my favorite type of food though, which is saying a lot).

Roz Cumming said...

Pretty darn good considering it doesn't take all day to make!