Healthy Cooking Monday – Green Mountain Sauteed Tempeh

By Chef Lisa on 12/27/2010
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Today’s blog is brought to you by my partner in crime, Chef Jon.  Tempeh is a protein option that our vegetarian guests enjoy, especially when served this way.  We like to use organic Vermont-produced Rhapsody Tempeh in our Green Mountain at Fox Run kitchen; try it the next time you celebrate Meatless Monday.

Tempeh originated in Indonesia. It is created through a process of culturing and fermenting cooked soybeans. Tempeh is naturally high in protein, fiber, vitamins and minerals. This makes it a great food to add to any healthy eating plan.

There are several brands out there so you may want to do a little taste testing to find the one that is right for you. Look for tempeh that is light in color with creamy white matting holding the block together. If you see gray to black patches the tempeh might still be alright but I find the aroma to be too strong. In Indonesia that is a delicacy!

Its flavor is sometimes described as “nutty” and/or a little “mushroomy,” which makes sense considering that tempeh’s fermentation starter is a fungus! I find that adding a little acid to a marinade can really brighten up its flavor. Here’s a sample of something we like to do here at Green Mountain at Fox Run.

Green Mountain Sauteed Tempeh - Serves 4

2 8-oz. packages of tempeh
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon dried thyme
½ teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon rice wine vinegar
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 teaspoon maple syrup
¼ cup water
1 teaspoon canola oil

Cut tempeh into 1-inch cubes and toss with remaining ingredients, except canola oil. Let marinate at least one hour. Heat a sauté pan over medium high heat. Add canola oil and then the drained tempeh. Cook while stirring to help with even browning. Once tempeh is browned on all/most sides, add reserved marinade and toss to coat.

Have you ever tried to cook tempeh?  Do you have a favorite recipe idea for it?

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