Gluten, by the way, is a central ingredient in a whole lot of the meat alternatives. Wheat gluten—also called wheat meal or seitan, is wheat protein. Kneading high gluten dough, removing the starch, and then simmering what's left in water produces a chewy, firm, meatlike product. Sort of like pâpier maché but without the newsprint. The other alternative meat products are mainly made of TVP, or textured vegetable protein, made from soy flour or other soy extracts. Chewing heroically on his appetizer—a slab of "Tofurkey Jerky"—my husband observed that much of this soy food is oddly dried out, lacking perhaps in, um, "soysture."