HelloFresh vegetarian box, round two!
This week we’re giving the recipe/ingredient delivery service HelloFresh a try (we went with the vegetarian box). If you missed it, you can check out my experience with the first recipe here.
On deck last night was Chipotle Seitan Chili with Bell Pepper, Cheddar, and Jasmine Rice.
First, if you’re not familiar with seitan (pronounced “sey-tan” \m/), it’s a wheat-based vegetarian meat substitute. From Wikipedia:
Wheat gluten, also called seitan wheat meat, gluten meat, or simply gluten, is a food made from gluten, the main protein of wheat. It is made by washing wheat flour dough with water until all the starch granules have been removed, leaving the sticky insoluble gluten as an elastic mass which is then cooked before being eaten.
Wheat gluten is an alternative to soybean-based foods such as tofu, which are sometimes used as meat substitutes. Some types of wheat gluten have a chewy or stringy texture that resembles meat more than other substitutes. Wheat gluten is often used instead of meat in Asian, vegetarian, Buddhist, and macrobiotic cuisines. Mock duck is a common use for wheat gluten.
Lisa and I ate a lot of seitan during the decade we were vegetarians, and it’s remarkably close to meat in texture. Once we return to a pure vegetarian diet, seitan will be used extensively in our meals.
This dish, like the first one I made, was very easy to prepare. Only basic chopping and dicing skills are required, and the ability to follow a very easy recipe.
The recipe card indicated that this dish would take about 30 minutes, but I lowered the heat and extended the cooking time to really meld the flavors in. Chili is always better when it’s allowed to cook for awhile, and the recipe card even suggests this for people who have a little extra time. I was happy to see that.
Like most cooks, I like to taste as I prepare the meal and make adjustments to suite my palate. As the chili slowly cooked down, I enjoyed the wonderful smoky flavor of the chipotle, but it was a little mild for my liking. Lisa and I both like spicy foods, so I grabbed my trusty bottle of Melinda’s Naga Jolokia Hot Sauce, and dialed up the heat several notches. I also added some salt, which really helped bring out all the awesome flavors.
This is a very hearty chili! In addition to the smokey chipotle seitan, there’s fresh Roma tomato, organic black beans, green bell pepper, red onion, garlic, scallions and vegetable stock. All of this is served over jasmine rice, which I felt was a really smart choice. The fragrant jasmine rice complimented the chili perfectly, and really elevated the dish.
The recipe box included a rather large bag of shredded cheddar cheese, which was to be added after plating. I only used about 1/4 of the bag for both plates, and I thought that was more than enough. I’ll probably go vegan and leave the cheese off entirely next time I make this dish. I really don’t think it needs it.
Here’s the completed product moments after I plated:
This was definitely another home run! Lisa and I both loved this recipe, and will definitely be making it again and again.
If you’re interested in trying HelloFresh, I’ve got a coupon code (new customers only) that will save you $40.00 on your first box: GV6KH9. With the coupon code you’re only looking at around $20 for 6 full meals. Definitely worth trying out, especially at that price. You can view next week’s boxes by selecting “Next Week” from the “Our Recipes” main menu item. Then, just add the box you want to your cart, select a delivery date and checkout. Be sure to use Promo Code GV6KH9 at checkout to save $40.
Next up (probably Friday) is Jamie Oliver’s Tomato Tagliatelle. We can’t wait!