Before going vegan I was far more of a fussy eater than I realised and anything with chilli was a definite no-no. Four years later, my taste buds have changed so much that I’m willing to try everything, as long as it’s vegan.
It turns out that I like almost all of it, especially things that would have made me wince just to think about before, like Korean pepper paste and spicy fermented cabbage.
This recipe came about from me experimenting after watching lots of Mommy Tang YouTube videos. I was inspired by the authentic ingredients she uses and her simple cooking techniques, which I have mixed together here.
My favourite thing about it is the balance of flavours, as it makes it so exciting to eat. Salty, umami soy sauce, tangy mirin vinegar, hot gochujang paste and something sweet to round it all out and hit every note on the flavour palette.
It’s really simple to prepare the seitan marinade ahead of time and if you use pre-cooked rice, this is a very fast weeknight dinner that is especially comforting to warm you up in the cold winter weather.
Gochujang was something I thought would be hard to find but is actually widely available in supermarkets and health shops. I got a large tub for about £2 in the world foods section at Morrisons.
The rice is a perfect filling accompaniment to the spicy seitan but is much more than a boring side dish with freshly chopped spring onion and sesame seeds.
I garnished with freshly grated radish for colour and a good drizzle of sriracha mayo for an extra spicy kick. I highly recommend serving this dish with kimchi – although unfortunately, I didn’t have any when I photographed this.
My favourite vegan brand is Kim Kong Kimchi, made in London. If you’re in the US, Mommy Tang highly recommends Mother In Law’s. If you can’t get hold of either of those just make sure to look for one made without fish sauce.
Korean Style Seitan with Sesame Rice
A spicy marinated seitan recipe to add Korean flavours into your everyday dinner repetoire
- 1 block firm seitan (200g)
For the marinade:
- 3 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 1 tbsp liquid smoke
- 1 tbsp gochujang paste
- 1 tbsp agave syrup
- 1 tbsp mirin
- 1 carrot thinly sliced
- 100 g baby chestnut mushrooms halved
- 2 large garlic cloves
- 100 ml water
For the rice:
- 70 g white rice dry
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 3 spring onions thinly chopped
- 2 tbsp sesame seeds
- Sriracha mayo
- Fresh grated radish
- Sesame seeds
Thinly slice the seitan with a serrated knife.
Add the sauce ingredients to a large mixing bowl followed by the seitan slices. Stir everything together until the seitan is well coated.
Cover the bowl with cling film and place in the fridge overnight to marinate. If you don't have time for this then give it at least 30 minutes for the flavours to infuse before cooking.
Rinse the dry rice in a sieve before transferring to a cool saucepan and covering with 200ml water. Heat to medium and allow to simmer for 35-40 minutes until rice is cooked and fluffy.
Heat either a wok or large frying pan to high before adding the seitan mixture including all the marinade. Simmer for 10-15 minutes while stirring regularly until the sauce reaches a thick syrupy texture and the seitan and vegetables have softened nicely.
While the seitan cooks you can prepare the rice. Add the sesame oil (1 tbsp), soy sauce (2 tbsp), chopped spring onions and sesame seeds (2 tbsp) to the saucepan, stir together and saute on medium for 5-8 minutes.
Once cooked, serve the rice into bowls followed by the seitan. Top with fresh grated radish, sriracha mayonnaise and a sprinkle of sesame seeds.
Viana Seitan Block
Colgin Liquid Smoke
Ajumma Republic Gochujang Korean Hot Red Pepper Paste
Flying Goose Sriracha Mayo
You can use 200g of pre-cooked rice from a packet if you would rather not cook it from scratch. Just add it to a clean saucepan followed by the rest of the ingredients.