Sunday, August 2, 2015

Spicy Homemade Vegan Sausage

. . . with a bonus recipe for homemade Chickeny Seasoning!

There's a reason we have the idiom, "like watching sausage getting made": it's a pretty nasty process. Granted, this is vegan sausage so even though it's not a grisly recipe post it's sure not the most photogenic one. So that's why I'm opening with a picture of the finished sausage bathed in a saucy bowl of gumbo. To distract you from the doughy brown tubular mess you'll see below.

Seriously, I think making vegan sausage from scratch is really fun! And it will save you a lot of money if you're used to buying those expensive premade ones that hang out next to the tofu and eggroll wrappers at the grocery store. These sausages are great grilled and slapped on a bun with lots of 'kraut or sliced into rounds and fried in a little oil. Actually, I'm just eating one straight up out of the foil right now. . . but my favorite way to prepare them is in that gumbo with a bunch of okra and beans!

Spicy Homemade Vegan Sausage
makes 8 large links

2 1/4 cups wheat gluten
1/2 cup nutritional yeast flakes
1/4 cup chickpea flour
2 tbsp homemade Chickeny Seasoning (see recipe below)
1 tbsp plus 1 tsp onion powder
1 tbsp fennel seed
2 tsp black pepper
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp dried chili flakes
1/2 tsp oregano
1 tsp salt
2 1/4 cups water
8 garlic cloves, pressed
2 tbsp soy sauce or Bragg's
2 tbsp olive oil

Note: To make the Chickeny Seasoning, mix together the following ingredients in a jar:

1/2 cup nutritional yeast flakes
2 tbsp dried parsley
2 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp celery seed
1/2 tsp marjoram
1/2 tsp sage

Cap the jar, shake to combine and use in soups and rice pilafs when you want a chickeny base flavor. Feel free to adjust the salt level as you like. I prefer to go light on the salt because depending on the recipe I'm using, it can be easy to go over board on saltiness.

Now for the sausages! Set up a large stock pot with a steaming basket and water. Prepare eight peices of aluminum foil, about eight inches long.

Combine all the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. In a separate bowl combine the water, garlic, soy sauce and olive oil. Pour the wet mixture into the dry and stir to combine. You don't have to knead the dough, just mix until the wet and dry ingredients are incorporated.

Use a half cup measure to scoop out a portion of the dough and shape into a log. Roll the log up in the foil and twist the ends so that it's secure but not too tight. The seitan will swell up as it cooks, so you want to give 'em a little room to grow while still holding their loggy shapes. Repeat with the rest of the dough, then stack the sausages in your steamer. Steam for 30 min, then let cool in the foil.

Before and after steaming

These sausages freeze well and are really nice to have on hand for quick weeknight meals. I usually just throw them in the freezer in the foil but if you plan on storing them proper you should probably remove them from the foil and wrap them tightly in plastic wrap or freezer bags.

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