Tempura Fried Seitan and Maple Baked Carrots
So you know when you start out intending to do one thing, and you run into one issue, followed by another…and end up with something completely different from what you had intended, but probably better anyway? That’s basically what happened here, with what was supposed to be beer battered Seitan (think the same consistency as onion rings) and ended up looking exactly like fried chicken.
The first issue was when I realized that I didn’t have any all-purpose flour on hand…and didn’t particularly want to batter things in whole wheat. I decided to use rice flour instead…in combination with the bud light I’d planned on pouring into the batter. So for starters, my combination was rice flour, bud light, paprika, S+P. (I have no clue what the measurements look like, I add liquid until I end with something that looks a lot like a pancake batter.) Since I was going with rice flour and had a light and airy looking batter, I figured I might as well coat the battered seitan in panko…it seemed right. Enter the appearance of fried chicken. (Although I don’t think they use panko in that….anyone? It’s not a dish I’ve ever made)
I fry these up in my deep-fryer at 375F until golden brown, and then they get moved to a plate covered with paper towel. And then there’s the sweet and sour sauce. This is actually my roommate’s recipe, but she was at work when I decided I wanted to deep fry things, so I had to give it a go on my own. Here’s what I did…it differs a bit from hers…
Sweet N Sour Sauce
1 15 ounce can crushed pineapple
1/3 cup turbinado sugar
1/3 cup rice vinegar
2 tbs soy sauce
2 tbs corn starch
1. Combine crushed pineapple, vinegar, sugar and soy sauce in a saucepan, and bring to a boil.
2. While contents are heating, combine cornstarch with about 1/4 cup water to create a slurry. Once the pineapple mixture has boiled, turn heat down to medium/low, and stir in the slurry, stirring continuously, at least until the sauce reaches a slow bubble.
3. Allow to remain on heat until desired consistency is reached, and then remove to use as desired!
Just a note, when I was down to the last spoonful or so of the sauce and still had a couple peices of seitan left, I mixed some jarred plum sauce into the sweet n sour. Delicious.
Then there were carrots….this is a combination I do often, but have never oven-baked before, and now having tried it, I think I like the baked version a lot better than the boiled. The trick here is to bring them just to the point of burning and then pull them out…because as I know from experience, carrots that taste like tar are…nasty.
1 lb carrots, halved and cut into thin strips
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup OJ
1. Pre-heat oven to 400F. Grease a glass casserole dish and toss in the carrots. Combine the maple syrup, OJ, S+P in a small bowl and drizzle over the carrots, tossing to coat.
2. Cook carrots for 30 minutes, removing at 15 to toss. Make sure you keep an eye on them, especially in the last ten minutes, since you don’t want these blackening and becoming inedible.
I made what I thought would be enough carrots for two people plus leftovers…and basically ended up eating the entire dish myself as though they were chips. These are ADDICTIVE, beware of that when you make them. If I had a larger casserole dish, I probably could have made two or three pounds of carrots and finished them off.
So a fried food and what essentially amounts to candied carrots…not my healthiest meal, but definitely a comfort food winner. Yum.