from La Dolce Vegan! by Sarah Kramer

1/4 c flour
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 c “milk”
faux chicken (recipe follows)
3-4 tbsp olive oil (I used canola)

In a shallow dish, stir together the flour, paprika, salt, and pepper. Set aside. In a small bowl, pour “milk” and set aside. Dip “chicken” into flour, then dip in “milk,” and then into the flour again. In a large frying pan on medium-high heat, fry “chicken” in oil until well browned on both sides. Makes 2 large or 4 small servings.

Faux Chicken
1 recipe basic instant gluten
Broth:
2 c water
1/4 c nutritional yeast
2 tbsp tamari
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp dried sage
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp celery seed

In a large saucepan, bring all of the broth ingredients to a boil. Slice gluten into 4-6 pieces. Drop carefully into broth. Reduce heat and cover with lid. Let simmer 50-60 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes, until broth has reduced completely.

I’ve been eyeballing this recipe ever since I made my first batch of “wheat meat.” This was the type of recipe that really got me going for chicken when I was little- it is so reminiscent of the baked chicken my mom made as an alternative to fried. But it’s fried! This is probably the second thing I’ve fried- in my 30-plus years here on this earth; the first being a batch of donuts my sister and I cooked up on the d-low while my parents were out of the house. Naughty! Fried food was saved for special occasions, so it’s generally off my radar. I don’t even know how to properly dispose of the oil! I went easy on it for this batch, so that I could just send it down the drain with suds. There was definitely a resting period on some paper towels to eliminate the excess oil between frying pan and plate. Once it got to my plate, I couldn’t photograph it fast enough. Good thing it retained its heat! As I was eating it, I made sure to slow down and really savor every bite- it was DIVINE. Crispy on the outside, chewy on the inside… it’s going to be tough to resist making this each time it’s faux meat making day.
Now- about the recipes. I like to make my faux meats in big batches. Spending a few hours in the kitchen is a big commitment, so I want to get a lot out of it. I made eight batches this time! In two pots. I had a pot of “beef” and a pot of “chicken.” I’ve also tried the “ham” from this book, and it’s really REALLY good. Smoky and authentic. The faux “turkey” was really good in a Shepherd’s Pie that I made a while back.  The “fish” I didn’t much care for, but Mike liked it. (BTW of all my cookbooks, I’d say this one gets the most use. Really, if you’re going vegan cookbook shopping, this is the one for quick and easy yummies.) It’s pretty easy to divide up the basic instant gluten recipe among a few pots of broth, and I highly recommend doing it. You save SO MUCH money over buying seitan in the store, and the taste and quality is so much better.
Once you have your “chicken” breasts all ready to go, the fried “chicken” recipe is really easy, and fast. And to think I was always afraid of frying food. Just make sure you have some greens to balance out the guilt!
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