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Seitan Pastrami (makes About 8 10 Servings)


  • 1 1/2 cup instant gluten flour (vital wheat gluten)
  • 1/4 cup Red Star Vegetarian support formula, nutritional yeast flakes
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon (or more!) ground black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/8 tsp ground allspice
  • 3/4 cup cold water
  • 4 tbsp. tomato paste
  • 2 tbsp. soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 1 teaspoon salt


Preheat the oven to 325 F. Place the gluten flour, yeast flakes, and the seasonings in a large mixing bowl, and stir them together. Place the liquid ingredients in a small bowl and mix them together. Pour this liquid into the dry ingredients, and mix them thoroughly. If there is still flour around the edges, add a small amount of additional water (1 or 2 tbsp only!). You should now have a large, firm, spongy mass in the bowl. This is called gluten. Knead the gluten directly in the mixing bowl for about a minute, just to blend (do not add any more flour). Form the gluten into one smooth log (about 6 to 8 inches long. Wrap the log tightly in silver foil, twist the ends up so you have a tight package something like a christmas cracker. Place on a dry baking sheet. If you don't want the foil to be in contact with your food, wrap the gluten tightly in a piece of parchment paper before you wrap it in the foil. Bake the "pastrami" for 1 1/2 hours. When done, unwrap the seitan, transfer it to a cooling rack, and let it cool thoroughly. When completely cool, wrap the seitan tightly in plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for a few hours before eating. Slice into paper-thin rounds.

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I have a neighbor who cooks with Seitan and her recipes come out really well. I'm intrigued with the idea of making it taste like pastrami. I wonder if I cold do something similar for Rubens?

for Rubens, soak the slices in canned beet juice (from pickled beets). That gives it the reddish color and a slight pickle taste.


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