Wednesday, March 14, 2018

attempt 2 coming soon

This weekend, I have to be in the office to finish up a project whose deadline is fast approaching, but for at least part of my Saturday, I'm going to shop for the components I'll need to make gyros for my coworkers. Some of this shopping will, alas, take me into Itaewon: High Street Market sells ground lamb, which I'll be combining with ground beef to make that lurvely, funky meat. If I'm lazy, I'll also try to find and buy naan somewhere in Itaewon (sometimes High Street has it, but sometimes High Street doesn't, so I may have to go strolling around le quartier). If I'm not lazy, I'll find a naan or pita recipe online and try to make my own. I normally use naan in place of pita because it's hard to find the exact Greek pita that Greek-American fast-food joints use when serving their gyros (the pita I want looks like this and doesn't flare into pockets). I don't want the "pocket bread" that has the thin sides; I'm looking for something thick, soft, and robust for rib-sticking gyros.

Meanwhile, I've ordered liquid smoke and liquid aminos, both of which will likely arrive either late this week or early next week. Once I have those magical reagents in hand, I'll try a different seitan lamb recipe, and if it works out, I might spring it on my unsuspecting colleagues. If it tastes or smells funny, though, I'll eat it all myself as punishment.

Speaking of punishment: I ate the rest of my first batch of seitan, which was a less-than-ideal experience. Once it was buried inside a gyro, it was somewhat palatable, but it still suffered from a certain wrongness that was initially hard to pinpoint. I did, however, finally figure out what was wrong with the previous batch of seitan. I was washing dishes the other night when the thought occurred to me: my seitan smelled just like dog food. Apparently, the herb/spice/seasoning combo I had used in my first attempt at seitan—which was close to what I usually use when making beef/lamb gyro meat—was exactly the wrong combination to use with vital wheat gluten and nutritional yeast. Given how funky that yeast is, I might also dial down the yeast/gluten proportion in future recipes. We'll see how that goes. I'm by no means finished with exploring the possibilities of seitan: I'll be attempting fake chicken, fake pepperoni, and those amazing-looking barbecue ribs sometime in the near future.

No comments: