Maple Tempeh

Tempeh.

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Maybe now some of you who are not familiar with this protein-rich food will make more sense of the fact that I spelled “tempest” incorrectly.  Get it?  Okay.  Cool.

Temeph sounds, like most other fermented things when you try to explain what it is, kind of gross.  It’s soy (or other grains) that has been cultured, much like yogurt.

To be honest, it took me a while to like tempeh.  It has a bitterness that I wasn’t a huge fan of.  However, I’ve found if you use a bit of salt directly on the temeh, it helps a ton.

“Where do I find this tempeh?”, you ask?  They usually have it in the refrigerated section at Kroger (around here), and at any health food store.

Maple Tempeh

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Tempeh: 1 block
Maple Syrup: 1/4 cup
Garlic: 2 cloves
Cayenne Pepper: 1 tsp
Garam Masala: 1/4 tsp
Salt: 1/4 tsp

  • Slice the tempeh any way you please!  Have fun with shapes.  Triangles are my personal favorite, but for this recipe I just used strips.  I like to cut mine thin, too.  This allows for more of the marinade to soak in.image
  • Pre-cooking the tempeh allows it to absorb more of the marinade.  It also helps to get rid of that bitterness.  If you decide to go this route, I’d recommend steaming with a little salt.
  • Mix the Maple Syrup, Garlic, Cayenne Pepper, Garam Masala and Salt together in a bowl.
  • Add the Tempeh and let marinade for as long as you like.  The longer your marinade, the more the flavor will soak in.image
  • I use cast iron, so I need a little bit of oil.  You might want this too, as the maple will burn quickly, but that’s up to you and your dietary preferences/needs.  Either way, preheat your skillet just below medium heat.
  • Add tour marinaded tempeh to the skillet.  Don’t get all ADD and leave, because the sugar will carmelize relatively quickly.  Once they are browned on one side, flip them over.  Thesecond side will take less time, so be aware.
  • Remove them from the heat when done!
  • Enjoy in your favorite salad, wrap, sandwich (Maple Glazed Tempeh Lettuce and Tomato?  Anyone?) or just eat it as is with a big side of your favorite vegetable!

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