Tuesday, October 14, 2008

On Steaming Seitan in the Oven

We spent the holiday weekend with family at the cottage, and as you know my plan was to make a seitan roast with stuffing. I had to make a few changes, however. First, I went with a more traditional stuffing to be enjoyed by vegans and non-vegans alike. As you can see from the pic above, I baked the extra stuffing in greased loaf pans (covered with foil) for one hour at 350 degrees. I do think the original wild rice stuffing is better for inside the roast, though, since it provides a nice contrast of taste and texture. Secondly, since I forgot my steamer at home, I had to change my method for cooking the roast. I suppose I could have just baked it, but last time I did that I found it got too dry. So, I came up with this contraption (the cottage kitchen is not blessed with a great selection of pots and pans). Although I used aluminum pans, ideally this could be done in a roaster. Anyway, I made the roast as per the recipe and wrapped it in heavy duty foil (I find the heavy duty foil is needed to keep the roast from bursting out), and suspended it over a loaf pan. I then placed the pan in a larger roaster, and filled the bottom of both pans with a few centimetres of boiling water (making sure it did not touch the roast itself). I then put the lid on and baked it for 1 hr. I then removed the roaster from the oven, removed the loaf pan, emptied the water, and baked the roast on its own for 30 mins.
The end result was a bit more "bouncy" than the original version, but I think that may be because I cooked the roast too long. I think the bake-steaming could be reduced to 30-40 mins. I had to seal up the roaster to keep the steam in, and that made it hard to check the roast. In any event, for those of you who don't have a steamer, this method may be of some use. It seems to me you could make sausages this way. As long as you can suspend the seitan above the water, a roaster can be a good steamer.