Sunday, February 16, 2014

Barbecued Tempeh

As I've mentioned in previous posts, I'm usually not a huge fan of tempeh; but given the right recipe, this humble concoction of fermented soybeans can be truly inspiring! Such is the case with the "Barbequed Tempeh" (page 296). All the tempeh recipes in this book begin by having you simmer the tempeh for 30 minutes to mellow the flavor and aid in digestibility, and it seems that I have enjoyed it more since I started incorporating this step; it seems to take the slightly bitter taste out of the product once it's been simmered in this fashion. The barbeque sauce in this recipe is made from scratch, a concoction of onion, red bell pepper, garlic, crushed tomatoes, and molasses, along with some herbs and spices, all cooked for about half an hour on the stove. The simmered tempeh is browned in a skillet, the finished sauce is added to the browned tempeh, and all this cooks for another 15 minutes to blend the flavors. After the three methods of cooking the tempeh (simmering in water, browning, and simmering again in the barbeque sauce), the texture is superb - chewy, but not tough, and soft, but not mushy. The chunky sauce is tangy, slighty sweet, and piquant, very satisfying flavors. (Blend the sauce until smooth if you're not fond of chunky barbeque sauce). This would make a great barbeque sandwich on a crusty french roll.

Keeping it McDougall Friendly" checklist:

  • Omit the oil when sautéing the onions, bell pepper, and garlic. Use a little water in a non-stick pan instead.
  • Omit the oil when 'browning' the tempeh, using a good non-stick skillet instead. Try not to use a liquid substitute for the oil, as you don't want to soften the tempeh.  The tempeh won't be as crispy or brown as it would be when using oil, but once you put the barbeque sauce over the top, you really don't notice the difference.

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