Recipe: Baked Vegan "Chicken Fried Steak" with Miso Gravy

This is a dish I have long adored. I grew up in the South. A plate of mashed potatoes, gravy and some chicken fried steak is heavenly. Healthy? Hell no! Vegan? In your dreams!

Well, dreams can come true. This is healthy, vegan and really hits the spot. It's not the easiest recipe you'll find here but it's perfect for a special occasion. Or a weekend. Or a really bad day. Those are all special in my book. Heck, survived Monday? SPECIAL!!!

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You can't tell me you aren't getting a bit hungry just looking at it...

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How about now? (Oh man, get the bib out!) 

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Hunger pains are setting in, folks! I need to make another batch ASAP!!!

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Recipe Notes...

*To make the crust you need a special piece of equipment: a spray bottle. That has only been used for WATER, please! You can grab these at almost any store (grocery, hardware, beauty supply.) It makes this work. Oh if you have one of those little refillable oil sprayers that will work as well but you'll need to clean it out and fill it with water.

*The recipe calls for 4 oz tempeh to add flavor and texture to the cutlets. If you don't have any tempeh or can't find it (or don't eat it) you can use 4 oz drained chickpeas instead.

*You can easily double this recipe and freeze the leftovers. After baking the cutlets let the ones you want to freeze cool and then freeze them. I would say that they will last about 6 weeks in the freezer but that is me being super conservative.

*The coating doesn't get flakey like a usual chicken fried steak but kind of becomes part of the seitan. You can double dip the cutlet to get a thicker crust. Just dip in the soy milk, the coating, shake excess off, dip in soy milk again and in coating again. Then bake as directed.

*The tempeh I use is pre-steamed. If yours isn't please follow the directions on the package to steam it (usually steam for 5-10 minutes.)

(Oh and let me tell you a little secret: If you make these you are going to want to save some for the next post: CHICKEN AND WAFFLES! OMG, yes!)

Baked Vegan "Chicken Fried Steak" 

(Crispy Tempeh Cutlets) 

serves 4

Cutlets:

4 oz tempeh

1 cup vital wheat gluten

1/4 cup flour (whole wheat is fine)

1/2 teaspoon onion powder

3 Tablespoons low sodium tamari

1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke

1/4 cup soy milk

1/4 cup water

Coating:

1/3 cup flour

3 Tablespoons nutritional yeast

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon cayenne powder

1 teaspoon onion powder

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 cup soy milk

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Cutlets: 

Puree the tempeh in a food processor until very fine (Alternatively you can do this with a fork but it will take a lot longer and may not get to the desired consistency.) Add the tempeh, vital wheat gluten and onion powder to the bowl and mix thoroughly. Now add in your liquids. Mix together and knead the dough for 3-4 minutes. Let it rest for 5 minutes.  Now separate into 4 portions and stretch each portion out into a thin cutlet shape.

Coating:

Mix together everything but the soy milk for the coating. Put the coating on a plate and your soy milk into a bowl. Now dip your cutlet into the soy milk. Dip it into the coating making sure that it gets totally covered. Shake off any excess and place onto the parchment lined baking sheet. Repeat with remaining cutlets.

Now turn your spray bottle to the "mist" setting and gently spray the tops of the cutlets. You want to get all of the floury mess wet but not soggy.

Slide the baking sheet into the oven and bake for 20 minutes. Flip the cutlets over and spray again with the water bottle. Bake for 20 minutes more or until lightly browned and crispy.

Let the cutlets rest for 5 minutes and then serve. Enjoy!

Nutritional information per serving

 :

 Serving size: 1 cutlet

7 WWPointsPlus, 280 calories

, 4.7g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 21.5g carbohydrates, 2.7g fiber, 0.3g sugar, 42.4g protein 

'

Peppered Miso Garlic Gravy 

3 Tablespoons flour (or 1 Tablespoon + 2 teaspoons cornstarch)

1 1/2 Tablespoons white or yellow miso

2 cups unsweetened soy milk

1 clove garlic finely minced (or 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder)

1/2 teaspoon fine ground pepper

Blend all of the ingredients together. Pour into a medium sized pot and bring to boil over medium high heat. Whisk the mixture frequently and cook until thickened (3-4 minutes after it comes to a boil.)

Nutritional information per serving

 :

 Serving size: 1/2 cup gravy

2 WWPointsPlus, 81 calories

, 2.3g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 9.5g carbohydrates, 1.2g fiber, 1.0g sugar, 5.1g protein 

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