I adopted a vegetarian diet three years ago and to this day I continue to discover the variety of delicious ingredients available to me. Tofu was an obvious choice at first, but I was never very excited about it. It lacked in texture and flavour, until of course you combined it with your dish. Enter tempeh. I instantly fell in love with the texture and nutty flavour it has on its own. With more protein per gram than tofu, tempeh is the perfect alternative to animal protein. It’s a great staple to throw in sandwiches, on a grill, in a chili, crumbled on salads, and many more options. So far, any time I’ve thought of using tempeh in a recipe, it tasted great and worked perfectly.
So, what exactly is tempeh? Tempeh is a traditional soy food originating from Indonesia. It is produced by fermenting the soybeans, then formed into a cake that is super easy to slice through and cook with. Tempeh keeps the whole soybean intact (you can see them clearly), which gives it a great, ‘meaty’ or chewy texture. You can find it at any health food store. I especially love this brand, which has several varieties to choose from including basil, curry, and kasha.
So, here is a super easy tempeh recipe that you can whip up in minutes.
Maple Glazed Tempeh Recipe
Makes 8 pieces
- 1 package of regular soy tempeh, about 250 grams
- 2 tablespoons tamari
- 3 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 tablespoon garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
- Slice the tempeh diagonally into triangular pieces, and then halve those pieces as well. You will end up with 8 pieces.
- In a shallow bowl, mix the tamari, maple syrup, and garlic powder.
- Dip each piece of tempeh into the mixture, covering both sides. If you’ve got the time, let this marinate for 30 minutes to an hour. I sometimes skip that part (like in this blog post), and it still turns out great.
- In a large skillet, heat coconut oil over medium heat.
- Spread out the tempeh on the skillet.
- Fry for approximately 4-5 minutes. Turn them over, sprinkle sesame seeds over top, and fry for another 4-5 minutes. Once golden brown, remove from heat.
- Serve with a nice green salad, such as the one below which is simply mixed greens, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, and balsamic vinaigrette.