Ok it’s not really a cake. Sorry. But it would taste weird with icing. Not bad. Just weird. Actually…
No. No icing. Savory layer cake. That’s what this is. And it incorporates all the veggies and colors you could want with a significant bunch of protein (31g a serving! crimony!!) you could use.
I’d like to thank my new KitchenAid Springform Cake Pan for making all of this possible. Without you, this dish would look significantly less like a cake. I’d also like to give a shout out to the act of “winging it” because I clearly had no plan once it was time to assemble the cooked ingredients inside the aforementioned springform cake pan. I did know that I wanted to layer some stuff. I think I layered some stuff pretty well.
I made a variation of this recipe once before and I loved it. The improvements I made, however, make it as lovable as Matt Damon’s do-good-ing character in The Rainmaker (I have a tv for the first time in a year, get ready for some bold tv references, guys). What a good guy he was! What a good Veggie Seitan Layer Cake this is!
- 170g sliced baby bella mushrooms
- 200g yellow squash, sliced pretty thin
- 200g zucchini, sliced pretty thin
- 1/2 cup edamame
- 2 packages of Trader Joe’s Beef-less Strips (I’m a recent convert)
- 1 cup of fat-free ricotta, divided
- 1 cup of diced tomatoes, divided
- 1/4 cup salsa
- 3 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
- 3 oz lite shredded mozzarella, divided
- paprika and braggs seasoning to taste
- 1/2 tsp onion powder
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Spray your springform cake pan lightly with cooking spray.
Cook your mushrooms in a skillet over medium heat for about 7 minutes or until they brown but before they get all the way mushy. Set aside. Spray your skillet with a bit of cooking spray (you can use oil if you want, I didn’t want), sprinkle paprika, braggs and onion powder on your zucchini and squash slices, and cook until very lightly browned and a bit softened.
Lay down a layer of of cooked squash on the bottom of the pan, filling in gaps with smaller pieces. Place a layer of zucchini down next, covering the gaps left by the first layer. Toss a few slivers of garlic on top. Next goes 1/2 cup of the ricotta, spread as best as you can spread it. (It won’t cover all the veggies so don’t be alarmed when it doesn’t. You looked alarmed.) Now do a layer of the beef-less strips, followed by 1/2 cup of the diced tomatoes, more garlic, and an oz of shredded cheese. Top with a layer of mushrooms. Next comes the remaining ricotta. Press/squish the edamame on top of the ricotta, keeping them more towards the middle than the edges (they’ll fall out otherwise, or something). Spread the remaining package of beef-less strips on top of the edamame and press it down again, trying to level it out a bit. It should start getting sort of solid. Fill the beef-less strip layer with the remaining diced tomatoes and salsa and sprinkle the remaining 2 oz of cheese on top of everything. Throw some more garlic on top. Why not.
Place your surprisingly heavy veggie layer cake on top of a baking sheet (shit’s gonna get wet) in the oven for 25 minutes…or whatever seems right. (See? Winging it.) Let cool before you undo the springform pan. Rejoice at how awesome it looks. Cut into 6 pieces. Eat.
Good things about this recipe other than everything:
- Using fat-free ricotta is totally tasty here because there is so much other goodness for the ricotta to take a bit more flavor from.
- Garlic. In my mouth. Maybe forever?
- Tons of different textures to keep this seitan creation from turning to mush. Edamame for a little crunch, mushrooms for a little meatiness, ricotta for something smooth, chunks of tomatoes to break up the smoothness, and the slight crispiness of the baked seitan. Nom nom.
- Salsa! Adds so much flavor for so few calories. Definitely pick your salsa wisely and this recipe is even more delicious.
- It’s colorful! Yay!! No more earth-tone seitan based dishes! Go team