Sunday, November 22, 2009

German Inspired Beet and Apple Relish

(pictured: Seitan paillard with beet and apple relish)

My 80-year-old parents like my seitan, which still blows my mind. They seem to prefer it when I make meals with the seitan, as it more closely resembles the meals they are accustomed to. Tonight we had the seitan paillards from yesterday topped with a German inspired relish. This relish has a lot of flavor, which is a nice counterpoint to the subtle flavors of the seitan and creamed cabbage and spinach.

To reheat the seitan paillards, I place them in my cast iron skillet with a couple of tablespoons of water and turn the fire to high. Cover the pan with a lid and cook for a few minutes until the water evaporates (the sound coming from the skillet will change to tell you to uncover the seitan). This will happen in less than 5 minutes. Now cook the cutlets uncovered, on both sides to recrisp them.

The relish is meant to add a pop of flavor and color to the plate. I combined classic German flavors in an unexpected way to make the relish. Here is what I did.

German Inspired Beet and Apple Relish
Makes 6 servings


1 medium beet, finely diced
1 apple, finely diced
¼ red onion finely diced
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
½ tablespoon walnut oil
1 tablespoon apple cider
2 tablespoons fresh dill, minced


Place the diced beet in ice water. Allow the beet to sit in the water for 10 minutes to pull the excess color from the beet. This will keep the entire relish from turning fuchsia. Thoroughly drain the beet of water before the next step.

Combine the beet, apple and onion and stir to combine. Whisk together the mustard, walnut oil, and apple cider. Stir the dressing into the relish. Add the fresh dill and refrigerate until needed.

Nutritional Information:

Amount Per Serving
Calories - 40.13
Calories From Fat (29%) - 11.74

Total Fat - 1.34g
Saturated Fat - 0.12g
Cholesterol - 0mg
Sodium - 42.66mg
Potassium - 91.88mg
Total Carbohydrates - 7.31g
Fiber - 1.43g
Sugar - 4.79g
Protein - 0.49g


The most dominant flavor in this relish is the raw onion. Make certain you cut it finely and evenly distribute it throughout the relish. If you think your onion is too pungent soak it in water for 10 minutes or so to pull out some of the sulfur. I prefer the acrid punch of flavor from the onion but I am odd like that. The secondary flavor is apple, followed by walnut oil. The beet, dill and mustard flavors are more background notes that are not as easy to identify.

No one could pick up all the specific flavors in this relish tonight. The hubby, not a big onion or mustard fan, liked it and told me he would gladly eat it again.

Now I am off to finalize the Thanksgiving menu and check the pantry to see if I need to run to the grocery store tomorrow. I will post the menu and timeline as soon as it is ready and the individual recipes as I make then. For big meals like Thanksgiving I try to start cooking a few days before the actual meal. By precooking some the dishes I avoid the dreaded "chaotic day of cooking" that happens in many homes.

I hope you all have a great evening!


  1. I lurve beets and this is a fabulous way to use them--very excellent idea. My list of recipes to try is so long it's ridiculous, but this is going to the top of it. I love this sort of thing. Looks great! Thanks for the recipes.

  2. And, I wanted to add that, while it is a true compliment that your parents love your seitan, I'm not my book, you are the Queen of Seitan. :)

  3. Rose,

    Thanks! :) I am so glad you like the idea. You and I seem to like the same type of recipes frequently. Topping the seitan with some sort of relish or salsa just seems like a requirement.

    talk to you soon,

  4. Oh, this relish looks and sounds so good, I can't wait to give it a try. I'll use canned beet which I already have, and will let you know how it comes out.

  5. Oraphan,

    Thanks! Please do let me know how it turns out with canned beet. I am very curious.


  6. Oh, and I have to say that I totally agreed with Rose, you are the Queen of Seitan!!!

    By the way, have you ever made Beefy Seitan with peanut sauce (like Thai style "Satay")?, I'm thinking of making fake beef satay with peanut sauce for my friend, Dee Dee.

  7. Oraphan,

    You and Rose are both very sweet. Thank you for the nice compliment.

    I have made seitan with satay sauce before. I think either the beefy or the white meat version (with a hint of worcestershire) would work with satay sauce. It sounds like a great idea to make for your friend Dee Dee. Are you trying to show her vegetarian food can be tasty?

    If you decide to make the satay I would suggest you make the seitan a day or two before so you know you have the process down. Have you made seitan before? It was a little intimidating for me the first time I made it. Now it is so easy I can practically make it with my eyes closed.

    Please let me know how it turns out. If you have any questions let me know. I am happy to answer.



  8. Thanks, Alicia! I've never made Seitan before and I've wanted to make it for the longest time. I found out that Dee Dee and her family love beef but I've never cooked real beef before and I feel yucky to cook it. So I think I would make beefy seitan satay with peanut sauch and maybe spicy beefy seitan salad. DeeDee knows that I'll make Thai vegetarian food for her only, no real meat!

  9. Oraphan,

    Seitan is very easy to make. I would suggest that you make it on a day when you have extra time to spend in the kitchen. Not that it is difficult or even time consuming but you will be reading and rereading the directions and that takes time. I think you will be pleased by how easy it is and how "meat like". Even my 80 year old omnivore parents like it.

    If you have any questions don't hesitate to ask. I am always happy to help.



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