What could be better on a cold winter night than hot Cajun? This month, our certified cook Chris Perrin offers his recipe for a Seitan Jambalya to warm you from the inside out! When he’s not feeding veg*n goodies to us here, Chris writes for BIAO Magazine, food-blogs at Blog Well Done, and is working on his own vegan cookbook. Enjoy!   ~ Jen

chris perrinSeitan Jambalaya

I have been on a real Cajun kick recently and for some reason, I cannot seem to stop making jambalaya. Since I’ve made it a habit to share my culinary obsessions on DomestikGoddess.com, I see no reason not to talk jambalaya! So today, we are headed to the bayou, but it will be a vegan bayou, thanks to our good friend seitan.

Still, the key to making this dish work, though, is not my favorite use for wheat gluten, but rather liquid smoke. Traditionally, most Cajun food is made with andouille, a smoked sausage, which blesses whatever it is cooked in with a slightly smoky flavor. Until we can find a good source of ready-made smoked seitan, we need to fake that andouille flavor and liquid smoke is just the thing to do it. Still be careful with it. Liquid smoke is potent stuff and a little bit goes along way.


Photo: RBerteig

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 package commercial seitan
1 teaspoon liquid smoke
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon black pepper
1 onion, diced
3 stalks of celery, diced
1 green pepper, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup, white rice or cooked brown rice
1/2 can of tomato sauce
1 teaspoon cayenne
2 cups veggie stock
Salt to taste

Add the olive oil to a skillet and let it get warm. Add the seitan, 1 tablespoon of black pepper, and the liquid smoke and cook, stirring occasionally, until the seitan browns. This should take about 3 minutes.

Remove the seitan. Add the onions, celery, green peppers, and garlic. Cook until the onions are soft, about 5 minutes.

Add the rice and toast for a minute. Then add the tomato sauce, cayenne pepper, and the remaining black pepper and continue cooking for another 2 minutes. Finally, add the veggie stock and cook covered for 25 minutes or until the rice is cooked and has absorbed all the liquid.

After the rice is done, add the seitan back to the dish and stir to incorporate. Cook until the seitan is warm, about 3 minutes.

For more of what is going in Chris’ lunchbox, on his dinner table, and on his party menus, as well as thoughts on food and culture, food in the media, and even the occasional recipe featuring meat, check out Chris’ food blog, Blog Well Done.

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