Mix flour and water together to form a firm dough. Knead dough for 3 to 5 minutes by hand, or in a food processor for 2 to 3 minutes. Place dough in a large mixing bowl, cover with cold water, and let sit for about 1 hour. Next, knead the dough in the water, gently, until water turns milky. This is starch releasing from the dough. Pour off the starch water and reserve in a separate bowl. Cover the dough with warm water and repeat –kneading until the water turns milky again. Pour off and combine with rest of reserved starch water. Repeat kneading, alternating between cold and warm water until a ball of gluten forms. When this happens the water becomes clear when kneading, and most of the bran and starch have been washed out of the dough. The remaining spongy mass is called wheat gluten, which is wheat protein.
Slice carrots into 2-inch long pieces. If carrots are very thick, cut into quarters lenghwise. Pull gluten into small balls slightly larger than golf balls. Stretch a piece of gluten and wrap it completely around a piece of carrot. Pinch the gluten to seal around the carrot. Repeat until all carrots have been completely enveloped.
Heat 2 to 3 inches of oil in a heavy pot. Working in batches, place 3 to 4 carrot stuffed gluten bundles in hot oil. Deep-fry until golden brown. Remove, drain excess oil on paper towels, and repeat until all bundles have been fried.
Place 1 quart water, shiitake, maitake, kombu, and soy sauce in a medium saucepan. Place the deep-fried seitan bundles in the pan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, simmer 5 minutes uncovered, cover, and simmer for 35 to 45 minutes. The carrots cook inside while the gluten becomes soft, tender, and slightly salty. This is Seitan.
Remove the carrot stuffed seitan bundles and set aside. Thicken the cooking liquid with some of the reserved starch water to make gravy. When desired thickness achieved, pour over seitan and cooked white or brown rice, millet, quinoa, red quinoa, or barley. Garnish with scallions or parsley.
VARIATION: If time is limited, make the gluten using vital gluten flour found in natural food stores and follow directions for forming a dough and kneading. Once the gluten is made follow the directions above for stuffing with carrots and cooking.
Per serving - 351 calories, 6 g fat (14% calories from fat), 65 g protein, 10 g carbohydrate, 3 g fiber, 0 mg cholesterol, 621 mg sodium