“Signing up for a half marathon in March is a great idea.” I distinctly recall saying these very words out loud during an unseasonably warm October. “It’ll force me to keep up my running regimen through the winter.”
Sure, it sounded like a great idea at the time – stave off holiday weight gain, cross off a major bucket list item. However, getting dressed for a long Sunday run in blustery 23-degree weather had me feeling more than a little bitter.
Tilting my head against the wind as I rounded the corner up to the Art Museum, my feet kept tempo with my brain: sweet-and-spi-cy, sweet-and-spi-cy. (Maybe it’s a distraction technique, maybe it’s a weird reward system, but all I think about while I run is what I’m going to eat later.)
The prospect of chewy seitan and fat, crunchy peanuts tossed in a sweet and spicy chili sauce was definitely what got me through the last few miles today.
For an easy, low-calorie punch of flavor, I used a storebought chili-garlic sauce available in Asian markets and most supermarkets. Feel free to adjust the spice to suit your tastes!
Sweet Chili Seitan Stir-Fry
1/3 lb. seitan, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 inch piece ginger, minced
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup shelled peanuts
2 teaspoons coconut oil
1 tablespoon chili-garlic sauce
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon agave nectar or sweetener of choice
1/2 cup vegetable broth (I used Swanson’s Thai-Ginger)
1 tablespoon cornstarch, dissolved in 1/4 cup cold water
I head broccoli, chopped into florets
1. In a saucepan, steam broccoli florets until bright green and tender. Set aside.
2. Add coconut oil to a wok or frying pan. Fry garlic, ginger and seitan until the seitan is brown and crispy (stir frequently!). Add peanuts.
3. Add chili-garlic sauce, soy sauce, agave and vegetable broth to the pan. Cook for about 30 seconds until warmed through.
4. Stirring constantly, add the cornstarch slurry in a thin stream until sauce thickens. Serve broccoli and seitan* over steamed rice.
Nutrition per Serving: 377 calories, 26g carbohydrates, 14g fat, 39g protein.
*This dish makes delicious leftovers, however, make sure to reheat in a frying pan. Microwaved seitan tends to come out like microwaved pizza crust – tough and leathery!