The Vegan Ingredient That Can Mimic The Texture And Flavor Of Fried Chicken

It used to be a chore to find tasty vegan dishes, but as more people switch to the lifestyle, selections are becoming more abundant than ever. The category of imitation meat, such as products created by the Impossible brand, has penetrated the mainstream market and made its way to restaurant menus. Per a survey by Gallup, 41% of Americans have tried some sort of plant-based meat in their lives, with those aged 30 to 49 being the most interested. Of the ones who tried fake meats, 60% say there's a good chance they'll choose them again.

According to Impossible Foods, a molecule called heme is responsible for the meaty flavor and texture of its meat substitutes. It gives the burger a red center that mimics the "bleeding" found in a traditional patty. The realism doesn't only extend to burgers. Bravo TV, Quorn, whose secret ingredient is a fungus, makes Chik'n Nuggets that can be compared to a McNugget, and Gardein Golden Fishless Filets nail it in the fish department. However, if you're keener on vegetables, there's another thing you can try to reproduce the taste of fried chicken.

Oyster mushrooms become crispy when fried

Not everyone is a fan of imitation meat companies, but that doesn't mean you can't enjoy a replica of fried chicken. In an interview with "Good Morning America," Live Eat Learn's Sarah Bond revealed a tasty alternative: oyster mushrooms. When fried, the mushrooms are said to duplicate the texture and crispiness of fried chicken, made possible by the vegetable's shape. To prepare the meal, you'll need lemon juice and soy milk as a stand-in for vegan buttermilk, flour, oil, and seasonings such as garlic powder, onion powder, salt, pepper, cumin, and smoked paprika.

Oyster mushrooms are named for their likeness to oysters, though they don't taste just like shellfish. Don't be misled though; the mushrooms actually do have a slight seafood flavor when not combined with the previously mentioned fried chicken ingredients. Beyond frying them, they also bode well as a pizza topping, side item, or to add a meaty texture to a soup or stir fry.