What on earth is tempeh, you ask.
Well, tempeh is my “go to” protein when making delicious vegan dishes. If you’ve read my posts in the past you will remember my “tempeh sloppy joe” recipe or my “tempeh vegan chile”.
Cooking with tempeh is like cooking with ground beef but tempeh can also be used in other ways too. Let me elaborate.
Tempeh is a “slab” of fermented soy beans, which are very healthy and good for you. Tempeh is not processed like tofu is. You can actually break this slab of soy beans down into crumbles and it is essentially little soy beans. When you look at a slab of tempeh, you think it has a mold on it but don’t fret….it’s good for you.
There are different options when buying tempeh. I tend to stick to the organic, non-GMO regular one. You can find flavored tempeh such as red pepper tempeh, or there are ones with flax seed added or multi-grains. As I said, for the purpose of adding to recipes I tend to stick to the “original” unflavored kind.
Tempeh on it’s own, can taste a bit bitter so I always seek out ways to incorporate tempeh into recipes involving sauces or stews, soups etc. But because tempeh has structure, you can certainly slice it for sandwiches, bread it, fry it in slices etc. It’s very versatile.
I love making Tempeh Bolognese pasta sauce. Nobody would know that they aren’t eating ground beef when eating my bolognese sauce. I spoon it overtop of gluten free brown rice noodles for a perfectly healthy pasta dinner. Trust me, your meat eater would never know that he’s not eating ground meat. Why not slip some tempeh into your favorite recipe instead of ground beef. Eating vegan one or two nights a week is a great health boost. Of course in our house vegan is pretty well the dominate offering so my guy doesn’t question anything I put in front of him. He knows it’s healthy….that just goes without saying!
1 8 oz. pkg of plain tempeh, crumbled
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium yellow, peeled and diced
2 medium carrots or 1 large carrot peeled and finely diced
3 tsp dried basil
1 tbsp dried oregano
3 tbsp. tomato paste
2 cups vegetable broth
1 28 oz. can diced or crushed tomatoes
1/2 cup fresh parsley chopped (optional)
1/4 cup fresh chopped basil (optional)
Heat oil in saucepan. Add crumbled tempeh and cook stirring until browned about 5 minutes. Add garlic, onion, carrots, dried basil and dried oregano, salt and pepper to taste. Cook about 10 minutes on medium heat, stirring frequently. Stir in tomato paste and vegetable broth and cook for another 5 minutes. Give it the odd stir while cooking. Add canned tomatoes and simmer over medium low heat for about 30 minutes. Just before serving stir in fresh basil and parsley if using.
Spoon this delicious sauce over your favorite noodles or brown rice for a healthy and very nutritious vegan meal that will satisfy the heartiest of appetites.