Make your own seitan at home
Not sure if you know this but seitan is incredibly easy to make at home. And really inexpensive too.
Because flour absorbsion varies you'll need to adjust slightly:
2C high gluten flour
1 1/4 to 1 1/2C broth or water
and seasonings you may enjoy
mix to combine ingredients then knead for 3 minutes, let rest for 5 minutes, then knead again. Dredge in a little extra flour. Cut into pieces of desired size.
drop pieces into rapidly simmering (but not boiling) salted water or broth
when they float let cook for 3 more minutes then remove with a slotted spoon and drain. These will be very moist a dumpling like and you can eat them like this if you want. But if you want the denser, chewier texture wrap in paper towels and put a heavy weight on top to drive out the excess moisture.
From this point you can wok, stirfry, grill, broil, bake, saute, deep fry... whatever. You can even coat it in panko to make fake meat cutlets.
Sorry I couldn't help you with the restaurants, but hope you'll try making your own.
Great to see this thread!
If you rinse out the starch in the kneaded dough it will be firmer. (I used to make tons of it in a restaurant I worked in.)
Boiling with some soy sauce and mirin, and maybe a *little* ginger, is delicious.
Thanks for starting this thread! How do you store it once you make it?
When I buy tubs of it, it's in a flavored kombu broth - is that the liquid it was cooked in?
Does it need to be stored submerged?
Bonus question . . . if you wanted to make mock duck (crispy skin) out of seitan, how would you go about it? I had it in a chili-mint salad in Montreal at a vegetarian Thai restaurant, and would love to duplicate but I have not a clue. Maybe panko, maybe some sweet-ish sauce that was browned on it. I've only used seitan in stirfries...
You can store it in the broth it was cooked in yes, if you want a very moist end result.
But if you want the firmer, chewier version I would suggest vacuum sealing it after doing the weight/drain on it. You can get a good sealer for under $100 new (cheaper used) and it will come in handy for saving all kinds of food.
As to the "crispy skinned duck"... panko is crispy yes, but in a breaded way that is quite distinct from a crispy skin texture.
To try to replicate that I would coat the seitan in char siu sauce (lee kum kee makes one widely available at grocery stores) then wrap in rehydrated summer roll or spring roll rice wrappers and fry. then drain and slice or serve whole. You'll get a nice result.
In fact for a really nice result slip some grilled scallions and sprigs of cilantro in there with the seitan.
You could also choose to use hoisin, thai sweet chili, peanut sauce... anything like that.