I haven’t eat meat for a really long time and I never crave meat. The only thing I usually crave are the sauces that some of the meat came in! I miss so many sauces! you just can’t get vegan alternatives off of a shelf and now being on a low fodmap diet (for IBS) even if they did I probably couldn’t have it because it would contain Garlic and onion (They’re in absolutely everything!)
The other day I was sat there and suddenly had a hankering for those chicken pieces you can get in supermarkets in a Chinese style sauce! I looked online for a recipe but if you type in Chinese sauce recipe…let me tell you there’s a whole bunch and none of them looked like the ones the sauce I had in mind. So I checked out the ingredients that they use on the original chicken and got to formulating the recipe myself.
You can use this recipe for anything, I used Seitan this time but it works on tofu too. Below i’m going to show you my recipe for the seitan however to adapt this to tofu you will need firm tofu and then press it for a couple of hours until all of the liquid is drained (if you don’t have a tofu press you can easily use kitchen roll and put it between two chopping boards with something heavy on top). Then marinade the tofu for a couple of hours (or over night) with the same flavourings that I use in the seitan to let them soak in. Then smother in the sauce and bake like the seitan (though please bare in mind tofu won’t take as long to bake)
The seitan recipe is one that I’ve adapted from a few different places and this is my most used recipe when using it!
** Also Seitan for those that do not know is another term for Vital wheat gluten. If you’re on low fodmap you may not be okay with this so just a disclaimer! I’m lucky that I am. However I’m not so lucky that I have a severe physical reaction to other gluten products such as spelt, pasta and noodles. So for those of you that aren’t okay with it you can follow the information above for tofu. **
Keep your eyes peeled as over the next few months I will have a whole host of tofu inspired recipes for you, to keep in line with healthy meal inspo!
- 1 and a quarter cups seitan powder,
- quarter of a cup of nutritional yeast,
- 1 cup vegetable stock,
- 1 table spoon tomato puree,
- 2 tbsp olive oil,
- half a tbsp soy sauce,
- half a teaspoon 5 spice,
- half a teaspoon mustard powder,
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika,
- quarter of a teaspoon of coriander powder,
- half a teaspoon of salt,
- pepper to taste
(if you aren’t on a low fodmap diet you can add garlic and onion powder to taste)
- 1.5 teaspoons Chinese 5 spice,
- 1 teaspoons smoked paprika,
- 2 teaspoons of coconut sugar (or you can use brown sugar)
- 4.5 teaspoons of nutritional yeast,
- 4 tablespoons of beetroot juice (I juiced my own cooked beetroot, but you can also buy this in health food shops)
- half a table spoon of tomato puree,
- salt and pepper to taste.
(again if you are not on the Fodmap diet you can add garlic and onion to taste, I made a separate sauce for my partner and I used ground onion granules and I used 1 teaspoon, and 1 teaspoon of garlic powder)
- Preheat your oven to 200 Degrees and put some baking foil on a couple of baking trays. Grab a large mixing bowl and put in your seitan powder, nutritional yeast, spices and salt and pepper. Mix together well. In a separate bowl or Jug mix together your soy sauce, olive oil and vegetable stock.
- Make a well in the middle of seitan powder mix and add in your liquids. Using a wooden spoon start mixing the two together. It’ll start becoming sticky and eventually you won’t be able to mix with a spoon. Instead you will have to put your hands in and start kneading the mixture with the palm of your hands like you would a bread dough. Knead the mixture for about 4-5 minutes.
- Now time to create the sauce! In a different bowl add all of your spices and seasoning, nutritional yeast, coconut sugar, tomato puree and the beetroot juice. mix well together until it forms a paste.
- On a chopping board cut off pieces of seitan to what looks like small fillets or chunks (you could even create burger patties if you wanted) spoon a tiny bit of your sauce onto each of the pieces and spread the mix over each of your fillets, make sure to coat both sides!
- Once you have coated all of the pieces put a layer of kitchen foil over the top of them, then place your second baking tray on top. This is going to help your pieces crispen nicely on both sides. If you have pieces on both baking trays and you have a third baking tray (or even a cake pan that’s the same length) then put it on top and pop it in the oven like this. if you do not have more than two baking trays then pop them in stacked on top of one another with the top layer just covered in kitchen foil. You can always pop the top layer in for an other 4-5 minutes if you need to with the bottom layer on top once you’ve taken the pieces off it. I know this sounds complicated, but you’re just stacking them on top of the other to make them crispen and bake better. Put in the oven for 30-35 minutes and then enjoy!
If you are using tofu you do not need to stack the trays on top of one another and you do not need to add kitchen foil to the top. However bake for the same amount of time.
I hope you enjoy my Chinese style sauce you could of course add this to many things such as soy strips or anything you like.