Thanksgiving is this Thursday for most of us in the U.S., but believe it or not, I’ve already made Thanksgiving dinner twice. I’ve been determined to come up with a new main dish, a simple adaptation of my Seitan Stuffed with Walnuts, Dried Cranberries, and Mushrooms. It took me a couple of tries, but I finally came up with the perfect savory, mushroom-infused seitan roast. You’d think that after enjoying it two times in three days, my family would be tired of Thanksgiving food, but you’d be wrong. My daughter E wants me to make this again on Thursday. My husband D and I loved it as much as she did, so it’s quite possible I will be making it a third time this week.
E is our family’s chief “Thanksgiving cheerleader.” She insists that we have the full feast every year, even if we’re only cooking it for the three of us. So before I get to the recipe, I thought it might be helpful to make a list of all of her (and our) favorite holiday dishes. These are not necessarily the fanciest dishes on this blog, but they’re the ones we come back to year after year. Our feast always includes at least one dish from each category below, as well as mashed potatoes. Got to have the mashed potatoes!
Check out our family favorites below, and if you don’t see what you’re craving, be sure to peruse my entire list of Thanksgiving recipes.
- Baked Tofu (above, with Jalapeño-Orange Cranberry Sauce): This is the simplest main dish of them all and the one my daughter always asks for. —gluten-free
- Seitan Scaloppine: Leave off the sauce and add mushroom gravy and these scaloppini become an easy main dish. —soy-free
- Dreena’s No-fu Love Loaf: This loaf has been wildly popular since Dreena Burton allowed me to share it on my blog, and rightfully so. I served it to non-vegans last year to rave reviews. —gluten-free, soy-free
- Thanksgiving Meatless Loaf: This grain-free loaf is tender on the inside and crispy on the outside and contains all the savory flavors of fall. —gluten-free
- The Best Vegan Green Bean Casserole: Lives up to its name. E has to have this every year.
- E’s Super-Awesome Brussels Sprouts and Mushrooms: My daughter created it and still loves it. —gluten-free, soy-free
- Vegan Southern-Style Cornbread Dressing: Based on my mother’s non-vegan recipe, no one ever realizes it doesn’t contain meat.–soy-free
- Ginger-Orange Glazed Carrots: An easy vegetable side dish that you can make ahead. —soy-free, gluten-free
- Vegan Mushroom Gravy: Absolutely essential. And delicious. —soy-free, gluten-free
- My Family’s Cranberry Relish Recipe: My father usually makes this, but when he doesn’t, my husband insists I do. —raw, gluten-free, soy-free
- Double-Layer Pumpkin Cheesecake: My family would probably divorce me if I didn’t make this on Thanksgiving. It’s higher in fat and uses more processed foods than I like, but everyone loves it and it’s only once a year.
- Impossible Vegan Pumpkin Pie: Much lighter than other pumpkin pies because it forms its own crust. Another must-have for my family. —soy-free, gluten-free
- Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecan Topping: This casserole is a dessert in my family. Make it and you’ll see why!
- Pumpkin Bread Pudding: My family’s newest favorite is this lightened-up version of a New Orleans classic dessert. —soy-free
There are three reasons why I’m including this Mushroom Seitan Roast on our list of favorites from now on. First of all, it’s delicious. The mushrooms add a savory flavor without being “mushroomy.” They are chopped fine, and even the hatingest hater of mushrooms would have trouble knowing they’re there. They break up the texture of the seitan a little so that it’s more tender than most gluten roasts without being noticeable themselves. Second, the recipe is fairly easy. You don’t have to stuff one thing into another or baste anything or stand over a stove. Put it in the oven and come back every 25 minutes to turn it over. That’s it. And finally: Leftovers. This roast firms up in the fridge overnight and makes the best thin-sliced sandwiches ever. Enjoy!
Mushroom Seitan Roast
- 10 medium mushrooms regular, crimini, or baby bella
- 2 1/4 cups vital wheat gluten
- 1/2 cup rolled oats or quinoa flakes (old fashioned oatmeal)
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon rubbed sage
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/4 teaspoon hickory smoked salt optional
- freshly ground black pepper
- 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth room temperature
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce, coconut aminos, or gluten-free tamari
- 2 cloves garlic peeled
- 1 tablespoon tahini or other nut butter
- Wash and dry the mushrooms. Place them in a food processor fitted with the chopping blade and pulse until they are finely chopped. Set aside.
- Combine in a mixing bowl: gluten, oats or quinoa flakes, nutritional yeast, thyme, sage, onion powder, smoked salt, and a generous grating of black pepper. Mix well to distribute all ingredients evenly.
- Place the broth, soy sauce, garlic, and nut butter in blender and blend until smooth.
- Add the contents of the blender and the mushrooms to the dry mix and stir until combined. Once it becomes hard to stir, use your hands to knead the ingredients together, making sure that all the dry mix is moistened. Shape into a ball and set aside.
Preheat oven to 400 F. Cut two 20-inch pieces of aluminum foil. Place them on the counter with one overlapping the other horizontally by about half its width. You should have a surface of foil about 20 inches wide by 20 inches deep. Cut a piece of parchment paper about 20 inches long and place it over the aluminum foil with the bottom edges even. Put the uncooked seitan in the middle of the parchment, and shape it into a loaf about 9-10 inches long. Fold the short ends over the seitan and then bring the long edge closest to you over and roll it up. Place it on a baking sheet with the edge of the foil down.
- Bake for 25 minutes. Turn over carefully and bake for another 25 minutes. Turn again and bake for another 20-30 minutes. Seitan should feel firm and not jiggly. You can test for doneness by cutting into the middle and making sure that it is firm and not dough-like. If necessary, give it more time.
- Remove from oven and allow to cool for a few minutes before slicing. Keep leftovers tightly covered to prevent them from drying out.
Makes about 12 1/2-inch thick slices. 2 slices = 1 serving.