If you're serving a small party of guests for the holidays, but don't want to compromise in extravagance, make this stuffed seitan roast. This savory, meaty roast is stuffed with vegan sausage, cabbage, and dried fruit, and then braised in the oven for three hours so it's perfectly tender. As a final step, it's pan-seared and then baked again. The top is crisp, the stuffing is sweet, savory, and tasty, and it's served in a tangy onion-cider gravy.
Seitan Roast With Sausage and Pear Stuffing and Apple Cider Gravy [Vegan]
For the Seitan:
- 1 cup water, cold
- 1/4 cup canola or other neutral oil
- 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon sage
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup, plus 1 tablespoon vital wheat gluten
- 1/4 cup chickpea flour
- 1 tablespoon instant granulated tapioca, optional
- 4-6 cups of vegetable broth, for braising
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil, for searing
For the Stuffing:
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 14 ounces vegan sausage, about 4 links, diced small
- 1 onion, minced
- 2 celery ribs, minced
- 1 cup firmly packed shredded cabbage
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- Fresh ground pepper
- 1 cup dried pears or other dried fruit, diced small
- 1/4 cup parsley, minced
- 2 teaspoons sage
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- 1 cup dry bread crumbs
- Up to 1 cup vegetable broth
For the Onion-Cider Gravy:
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 cups chopped onion
- 1 1/2 cups apple cider
- 2 cups vegetable broth, divided
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- Salt and pepper, to taste
To make the Seitan:
- If you are adding everything into a bread machine, just add the gluten ingredients in the order given, set the machine on the dough cycle and let the machine work for about 30 minutes. It does not need to work for a whole cycle.
- By hand, mix the water, canola oil, paprika, sage, and salt in a large bowl. Add the vital wheat gluten, chickpea flour, and tapioca, if using, to the liquid ingredients. Knead the liquid and the dry ingredients together for about 15 minutes or until the gluten is shiny and cohesive.
- In either case, set the gluten aside for another 30 minutes so it can relax. You can double the recipe, but divide it in half before allowing it to rest.
To Make the Stuffing:
- Heat the oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the sausage, onions, celery, cabbage, and garlic to the pan and cook and stir for about 15 minutes, or until the sausage is getting golden brown. Season with some fresh ground pepper.
- After the sausage is golden, add the dried fruit, parsley, sage and allspice, stirring to combine. Turn off the heat and add enough salt to taste, keeping in mind how salty the broth you will be adding is. Now add to the sausage mixture the bread crumbs and just enough vegetable broth to moisten the stuffing. Do not add too much. The stuffing should stay together when compressed by your hand but not feel too wet.
To Stuff the Roast:
- Have a board ready to roll out the gluten on after it has had a chance to rest. You can use a rolling pin, but just using your hands to stretch the gluten is sufficient. Stretch it enough to accommodate as much of the stuffing as you would like to put into it. For example, you can add all of the stuffing in one seitan roast, making for about a ratio of 40 percent gluten to 60 percent stuffing. This made the top of the gluten thin and, in the end, crispy, when all done.
- Simply place the stuffing onto the stretched out dough and fold the dough over onto itself, enclosing the stuffing. Seal well using your fingers without ripping the gluten. Pour the 4-6 cups of vegetable broth for braising into an oven-safe pot or pan that can be sealed with foil, place the gluten, seal-side down, into the broth and seal the pot/pan with tin foil very well to keep the steam in.
- Put the pot into a cold oven, turn the heat to 275°F and cook for 1 1/2 hours. Remove from oven, gently and carefully turn the seitan, reseal the pot with the foil and return it to the oven for another 1 1/2 hours. Turn oven off but leave the seitan in for another hour. Cool before proceeding with the recipe.
- About an hour and a half before you need to serve, preheat the oven to 350°F. Remove the seitan from the cooking broth.
- In a large pan, on high heat, heat a tablespoon of oil and sear the seitan roast on both sides for a few minutes or until there is a nice color on the seitan. Transfer the seared seitan to a pan and reheat it in the oven for about an hour or until thoroughly hot.
To Make the Gravy:
- Heat the oil in a medium pot over medium-high heat and add the onions. Cook and mix for about 10 minutes to sauté the onions.
- Add the apple cider and 1 cup of vegetable broth to the onions. Stir and bring to a boil. Boil for about 10 minutes or until the mixture is reduced by half.
- Strain the cider-broth mixture, discarding the onions. Mix the cornstarch with the other 1 cup of vegetable broth. Return the cider-broth mixture to boil, add the other 1 cup of vegetable broth with the cornstarch. Return to a boil and add salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.
The stuffing recipe makes enough for two roasts.