Chipotle Seitan ‘n Eggs
This was too fun a meal not to share. While the brewery’s undergoing massive renovations to the space, and garden plans for this season have been on hold, we’ve still got to eat. The eggs have been proliferating by the hens week by week, ever since late February. Now we have a surplus, and found ourselves yesterday with a few rare gifts: seitan, from a new local company called Monk’s Meats.
The natural, wheat gluten product is handmade by a crafty couple who live in Brooklyn. They’re currently delivering orders of their seitan, which come in three flavors, not including specials of the week, to customers directly. They plan to sell their seitan this year in stores and open markets, too.
I was introduced to Monk’s Meats through their joint participation in a pre-race dinner for the Red Hook Criterium two weekends ago. Sixpoint sponsored the event by providing beer, Fort Defiance roasted four lambs for the dinner outdoors, Monk’s Meats brought seitan, and I helped out Annie Novak and her Growing Chefs crew by making the rest of the veggie sides at the brewery (using neighbor Added Value farm’s produce). It was a collective local effort, and a lot of fun. And one of my favorite items on the menu that night was Monk’s Meats’ savory seitan braised with onions and Sixpoint Sweet Action.
The folks from the “vegan butcher shop,” as they call it, got in touch with me soon after to see if we could remake that entree as a weekly special for their customers. It had been such a delicious hit, they agreed. So we traded off: some Sweet Action for seitan, and the following week, co-owner Chris returned to the brewery with a few containers of the beer-braised seitan, which everyone at the brewhouse got to enjoy.
Chris also brought by another flavor: their chipotle-spiced seitan, kept in a smokey-spicy broth. I brought that one home as a token goody, along with one of those rich, spring eggs from the coop. Together, they made a beautiful and satisfying lunch. It was all protein, too: the savory wheat gluten, and the hearty egg. Who cares if isn’t vegan this way? I think this vegan “charcuterie” and eggs go together quite well.
If you’re not a vegan, you can surely relate to the oozing joy of a gently cooked egg. The creaminess of the yolk add some welcome fat to the super-healthy seitan, and bolsters the sauce. I garnished my plate with some leftover cilantro for the perfect touch of freshness. I’m not very experienced with eating seitan, and from the few times I’ve had it, it wasn’t very memorable to say the least. Monk’s Meats’ homemade chipotle-spiced version of it topped with the fried egg however, will go down in my tastebuds as a very delightful experience. Check it out soon, and here’s my simple recipe.
Chipotle Seitan ‘n Eggs
(makes 2 servings)
1 pint chipotle seitan from Monk’s Meats (or try braising plain seitan in your own chipotle-spiced broth)
handful fresh cilantro
tablespoon of oil
Heat the seitan through in its braising liquids. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a fry pan. Spread oil across the pan and crack eggs onto the pan keeping them separate. Reduce heat to medium-low and let cook until the whites are no longer clear, and the edges just begin to ruffle or brown. Sprinkle the egg with salt crystals.
Distribute seitan to two serving plates, pouring over some of the broth. Place fried eggs on top of each. Garnish with cilantro and serve.
Posted: April 5th, 2012 under Recipes.