Intrigued by the comment that ‘Satan’ would be on the menu, I went out last night to my first ever vegan meal. Disappointingly Beelzebub never made an appearance, although we did eat something called ‘Seitan’ . Seitan is, apparently, derived from wheat and, according to one expert, is “a staple food among vegetarian monks of China, Russian wheat farmers, peasants of Southeast Asia, and Mormons”. If that’s true, it is something of a relief that I fall into none of those categories. Seitan turned out to be a somewhat chewy – and tasteless – phenomenon. Theologians and gastronomes can unite happily over the explanation for this one disappointment in an otherwise interesting dinner. It was Seitan’s fault. That stuff is muck, evil Tofu’s even more evil twin. The chef was clearly not to blame, for the rest of the meal was delicious if a little unsatisfying for the carnivores present, something that will be remedied by feasting on burgers and (to use Mencken’s term) other “sweepings of the abattoir” all day today. There is no better way to exorcise Seitan.