The world of vegan weenies and sausages has come a LONG way in the past decade. The first vegetarian hot dog I tried in college was rubbery, salty and all together disappointing. Today Tofurkey, St. Ives and Lite Life all provide a good variety of tasty vegetarian and vegan alternatives. Unfortunately my food compulsions seem to have grown along with the palatableness of faux meat products. These days I find myself shying away from all processed foods and obsessively reading reports on the processing of soy. It’s becoming clear that if my neuroses continue to progress I will soon be making all of my food.
These mental defects have encouraged me to branch out of my culinary comfort zone of “stir fry” and try new things like bread baking (currently at a 60% success rate), bean burger making (still failing but will not give up), seitan making (100% success rate!) and now vegan sausage making.
Last night I tried Julie Hasson’s recipe (substituting Spike seasoning for the Chik-Nish and eliminating the added salt) and oh my god were they amazing! The dough came together easily, but was wetter than I had expected. Rather than futz with the recipe I pressed on and formed logs with the soggy stuff, rolled them tightly in foil and then steamed four and baked four (at 375 for about an hour and 15 mintues). We ate the steamed ones with maple glazed sweet potatoes (very disappointing – too sweet) and cabbage cooked with onions, Bragg’s and white wine. The meal was just heavenly. The sausages were firm, the flavor was out of this world good and I was able to eat them with ZERO worry as to what that strange ingredient is that I can’t pronounce.
Mr. Husband, who is a huge real sausage connoisseur, devoured two and a half of these vegan weenies. As we discussed this unbelievable success with mouths full of food (because when you are childless you can do such uncouth things) we decided that never again will processed faux weenies enter our home.
I challenge all vegans and experimental omnivores that are reading this to schedule an evening this month and make vegan weenies. You will not be disappointed!
And now, back to my vegan baking – which is not going quite as well as the sausages… more on that once my pride has healed 🙂