How to cook with dried soy meat

Written by jensen johansson
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How to cook with dried soy meat
Soy meat can be easily cooked (Soy and ginger beef with broccolini ready to serve. image by Brett Mulcahy from

Soy meat is the term used for textured soy protein (TSP). Dried soy meat can serve as replacement for meat in vegetarian cuisine and in cases when one must reduce intake of animal proteins. It is brown in colour and looks like nuggets. Soy is rich in protein and low in fat. There are two types of soy meat: 50% protein rich (made from soy flour) and 70% protein rich (made from soy concentrate). The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) regulates application of soy proteins in meat products.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Dried soy meat
  • Dish
  • Water or vegetable/meat stock
  • Pan
  • Lemon/vinegar (optional)

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  1. 1

    Ask for the type of dry soy meat you prefer when buying it. The rehydration process differs for 50% and 70% protein-rich soy meat. Choose the shape, depending on the recipe: flake, chunk or granule. Flakes and chunks are good for mixing with meat. Granules are fine in sauces and broths.

  2. 2

    Measure the quantity you need for the recipe. Choose a dish at least double in capacity. Dried soy meat grows in size when you rehydrate it.

  3. 3

    Rehydrate the soy meat. Boil water and pour it in the dish over the soy meat. The soy water ratio is 1:2 for 50% protein rich soy and 1:3 for 70% protein rich soy. Stir it with a spoon and leave it for five to 10 minutes. Alternatively, you may use vegetable or meat stock instead of water. You may add a bit of lemon or vinegar.

  4. 4

    Pour liquid in a pan and cook the soy meat in accordance with the recipe. Add soy meat when the liquid has boiled. Soy meat does not have flavour, which means its taste depends on sauce and spices you cook it with. For example, if you are making Manchurian soya chunks, pour 4 cups of water, wait for water to boil and add soya chunks. Cook it for three to five minutes (no more, since you have already rehydrated the chunks) then squeeze all the water. Chop each nugget into 2 pieces with a kitchen knife. Follow the recipe to prepare the sauce then add soya chunks, chopped tomato and capsicum. Chunks will have the flavour of the additives.

Tips and warnings

  • Dried soy meat may last over a year when you store it at room temperature. Once you rehydrate it, however, use it immediately or store it in refrigerator. Don't leave it in refrigerator more than three days.
  • Use dried soy meat as animal meat substitute or combine with meat.
  • Fry soy chunks instead of cooking them. Don't rehydrate them; just put them on boiled oil. Chunks won't have any taste, so you may add soy sauce or marinate them prior to frying.

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