Monday, October 1, 2012

Soy-lin bread

Soy and linseed (flaxseed) bread is very popular in Australia now, partly because of how good it tastes, but mostly because of its benefits for women.  This is a light and fluffy loaf, adapted from a friend’s recipe, and it will still be light and fluffy even if you replace the bread flour with wholemeal flour (many cooks despair that they can’t produce a light and fluffy wholemeal loaf at home).  Furthermore, it’s got more of what’s good for you:  soy, and linseeds.  After eating a slice of this loaf, you are satisfied and at peace in the world… and will never want to go back to commercial soy-lin bread ever again!

2 1/2 cups unbleached bread flour
2 cups wholemeal (wholewheat) flour
2 tsp. instant yeast (or 4 tsp. regular dry yeast)
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. citric acid
1/2 cup okara, firmly packed
1/2 cup linseed (flaxseed)
2 cups warm buttermilk
1/4 cup honey
1 egg
2 tbsp. oil
cooking spray

1. Combine flours, yeast, salt, and citric acid until well mixed.  Add okara and linseed.  Whisk together buttermilk, honey, egg and oil, and add to dry ingredients, beating well.
2. Knead dough 8 minutes by hand in the bowl or 5 minutes with the dough hook on your mixer.  Be patient!  This is a VERY gooey dough.  Do not be tempted to add more flour – the high moisture level is what makes the resulting bread so fluffy.
3. Squirt the dough with cooking spray, cover with plastic, and allow to rise in a warm place until doubled.  Gently knock dough down and divide in two.  Place into greased loaf pans with wet or oiled hands.  Cover loaves, and allow to prove until they are 3/4 of the way to doubled.
4. Brush proved loaves with milk and place in a COLD oven.  Turn oven on to 180oC.  Bake loaves 40-45 min., until golden and cooked through (loaves should sound hollow when tapped on the base).  Turn out to wire racks to cool.

Oat and soy clusters

A delicious morning cereal with milk, or a munchy crunchy snack to eat by the handful, this smells just divine as it cooks.  Put it in the oven and watch the kids descend on the kitchen like vultures!  These clusters are crunchy soon after baking, but get chewier as they are stored.

2 1/2 cups wholemeal (wholewheat) flour
1 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
2 tsp. bicarb. (baking) soda
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup maple-flavoured syrup
1 tsp. vanilla

1. Preheat oven to 180oC.  Combine all dry ingredients well.  Whisk together buttermilk, syrup and vanilla, and stir into the dry ingredients.  Mix well, breaking up lumps so that none are bigger than a hazelnut.
2. Spread mixture on two baking sheets and bake for 10. Stir to break up lumps, and bake another 10-15 min., until golden.  Cool before storing in an airtight container. 

Apricot and almond soy snacks

I love a commercial bar here in Australia called “Soy Snax”.  Last time I bought one, I looked at the ingredients, and made my own!  You can replace the apricots and almonds with your favourite dried fruit and nuts.

1 cup okara, firmly packed
1 cup flour
3/4 cup chopped dried apricots
1 1/3 cups unsweetened coconut
1/4 cup slivered or chopped almonds
1 1/2 cups puffed rice cereal
1/2 cup honey

1. Grease a square baking pan, and preheat oven to 170oC.
2. In a bowl, combine okara, flour, apricots, coconut, and almonds.  Stir in cereal.  Stir in honey, and mix to form a dough.  Press into prepared pan.  Bake 30-35 min., until set and lightly golden on top.  Cut into 12 bars while still hot, and allow to cool in pan 30-45 min.  Lift out bars and cool on a wire rack.

Okara "chicken" parmigiana

This recipe adds another step to the Okara "chicken" nuggets recipe, but it is totally worth it as it is so delicious.  Remember that you can stagger all the cooking stages.
(4 servings)

1 x recipe Okara "chicken" nuggets, cooked in a square pan
1 1/2 cups prepared tomato sauce
1 tbsp. chopped fresh basil
1 tsp. oregano
1 clove garlic, minced
1 cup Mozzarella
2 tbsp. Parmesan

1. Follow recipe for Okara “Chicken” Nuggets up to Step 4.  Instead of cutting into nuggets or strips, cut into quarters.  Proceed with crumbing and frying.
2. Preheat oven to 200oC.  Combine tomato sauce with oregano, basil, and garlic.  Spread a thin layer of sauce on the base of a greased baking dish, and top with the fried “chicken” squares.  Top with remaining sauce, and sprinkle with mozzarella and Parmesan.  Bake for 20 min., until cheese is melted and golden.

Okara "chicken" nuggets (or strips)

This is the kind of recipe that throws some people into a panic: it’s got two cooking stages!  But never fear.  Neither of the stages takes a long time in terms of labour, and you can break up the task: cook the “chicken” mixture up to four days ahead and cut and crumb when you’re ready.  In fact, the cooked "chicken" mixture is a great standby to have in the refrigerator.  It can be the base for so many things, from a simple breakfast sandwich to a "chicken" Parmigiana.

(4 servings)

For “chicken” –
2 large chicken stock cubes (or 4 small)
1/4 cup boiling water
1 tsp. soy sauce
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
2 tsp. yellow (German) mustard
1 1/2 cups okara
3/4 cup flour
2 tbsp. gluten
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. oregano
1/4 tsp. thyme
1/4 tsp. pepper
For crumbing and frying –
1/2 cup dried breadcrumbs
1/2 cup flour
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. baking powder
salt and pepper to taste
1 egg
1/2 cup buttermilk (or 1/4 cup milk whisked with 1/4 cup yoghurt)
oil for frying

1. Dissolve stock cubes in boiling water.  Add soy and Worcestershire sauces and mustard; set aside.  Combine okara, flour, gluten, salt, oregano, thyme, and pepper.  Add stock mixture, and knead with hands until well combined.
2. Press mixture firmly into a greased cake pan, and cover with foil.  Place in a frying pan, and fill frying pan with enough boiling water to come halfway up sides.  Cover, and bring to the boil.  Reduce heat to medium-high, and cook for about 45 min., until set and firm.  Remove from heat, peel off foil, and allow to cool completely.  (Mixture will get even firmer as it cools.)
3. In a ziplock back, combine breadcrumbs, flour, garlic and baking powder, and salt and pepper to taste.  Whisk together egg and buttermilk.
4. Unmould “chicken” mixture.  Cut into small rounds or ovals with a cookie cutter for nuggets, or into strips with a knife for chicken strips.  Dip nuggets or strips into egg mixture, and as they’re dipped drop them into the bag.  When they’re all done, seal bag, and shake.  Fry nuggets or strips in hot oil until golden, and drain on crumpled paper towels.  Serve with the dipping sauce of your choice, or in a sandwich with mayo, lettuce and tomato.   


This isn't my recipe - it's from Shurtleff and Aoyagi's Book of Tofu, which is just about the only book you need if you're interested in soy DIY.  While this is yummy, and a good and basic faux meat, I'm not an "I can't believe it's not sausage!" kind of person, and I think it's best if we learn to appreciate these kinds of recipes for what they really are, rather than what they're trying to be.  Serve fried soysage as part of your breakfast fry up, or in a muffin, biscuit, or burger bun.  You can also form the mixture into sausage shapes, wrap in baking parchment and foil, steam until set, and serve like hot dogs with all the trimmings.  Don't forget the ketchup and mustard!

1 1/2 cups okara
3/4 cup wholemeal flour
2 tbsp. Maggi seasoning or soy sauce
1 tsp. mustard
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. oregano
1 clove garlic, minced
dash pepper
1-5 tbsp. milk (dairy or soy) or water

1.  Preheat oven to 180oC.  Combine all ingredients except milk or water, until well mixed.  Add just enough liquid to make a medium-firm dough.
2.  Oil the inside of a cylindrical mould (a nut loaf tin is good for this) and pack mixture in.  Cover with foil.  Place in baking pan and pour in enough water to come 2.5cm up the side of the pan.  Bake for 30 min.
3.  Allow mixture to cool in moulds, then shake out.  Cut into slices and fry like sausage.