Apr 7, 2010

Vegan Hot Dog, v. 1.0

I was craving a hot dog the other day- one of those old fashioned, nitrite-filled rat part cravings (yes I am ashamed)... and I thought to myself, "Why spend five bucks on four little veggie dogs that don't even fit in the fricken buns? I mean, how hard could it be to make some?"

Well, as it turns out... it ain't that easy. What does a gal have to do to make a good simulation of processed meat? Haha! There has been a couple of "beta" versions before version 1.0, so I am making progress.

This dog was a little on the bland side (needed more salt, seasoning, etc.), but the texture was really good, and it tasted pretty good with all the fixings piled on it. I think it would be better as a burger though. I might do less TVP next time. Any thoughts out there on how to improve the texture, let me know! I read the ingredients in most commercial brands, and they contain agar, which I might throw in too.

I added beet juice to make it pink, but it turned out brown after cooking.

Grilled to get those cool marks!

Makes 8 Jumbo Dogs

1/2 C. fresh white button mushrooms (about 2 large mushrooms)
1/2 block (7 oz.) extra firm tofu
1 tsp. salt (I would add 1/2 tsp. or more next time)
3 T. tomato ketchup
1/3 C. nutritional yeast
2 cloves garlic
2 T. ground flax seeds
1/2 C. beet juice
1/2 C. water
2 T. extra virgin olive oil (plus a little extra for brushing)
1 C. vital wheat gluten
1 C. TVP (granulated kind)

Throw everything but the wheat gluten and TVP into a food processor and spin until smooth. Incorporate the last two ingredients half a cup at a time (still in the food processor) until a soft ball forms. Turn it out onto a flat surface and shape into a round form. Cut into eight equal parts, and roll into hot dog shape. Wrap tightly in foil and steam for about 30-40 minutes until firm. Brush with a little olive oil and cook briefly on a grill on all sides.

All kidding aside, these are pretty easy to make if you have a food processor- so easy, I barely left my barstools. For my next post, I will be doing my first GIVE AWAY! Hint: it's a cool kitchen gadget that you probably don't have, but have always wanted to play with. That being said... stay tuned!