fake meats: short version: ADD GLUTEN TO THE BEANS
that's basically it hahahaha. i can't believe i didn't know. people make stuff so complicated. go search for a seitan recipe, it will be like 40 minute video and a bunch of mystical bullshit and large vats and many tales of failure.
tldr is just add gluten to the beans. that's the fundamental fact. ofc you must add flavor
but flavor is up to you.
yes, legumes + grains = "complete" protein (lysine and methionine deficiencies get mutually covered). this is the fundamental fact of vegan "meats". it's just pasta e fagioli with reduced starch.
so last night i found this video (thankfully short in spite of slow intro, uses 8 minutes to demonstrate 3 preparations) showing how to make fake meats:
but rather than try to copy verbatim i started messing with what i already had at home.
my current basic formula is:
1 cup cooked beans (with green lentils, it's ~22g protein)
1/2 cup gluten (46g protein)
2 tbsp oil
salt for the gluten
grind in the food processor, it will get chewy fast.
sssssso, my lentils are quite dry, plus i added 2tbsp nooch for the seasonings (plus 8g protein), so i needed 1/4 cup water for this first attempt.
made 2 big burgers, need to be fried slow. make sure to cook at a low heat so the beans toast without burning and the gluten cooks through. burned beans are the worst.
nutrition was ~40 protein per person all told (lentils had shiitake, etc). tasty and satisfying, and not too starchy!
for the next iteration i might alter the ratios to experiment with nutrition + texture.
i have beef base in the fridge, so i'll try seasoning with that next for the lentil burgers. and chicken base and garbanzo for the nuggets. this is really a great find for me... so simple, it's hilarious.
yes yes, there is a way to make seitan separately, and bla bla bla, but why? it's an incomplete protein anyway and you'll need to add legumes eventually for the lysine. so why even bother.
also, forget large vats.