Y2-Day 45 – Tempeh Cakes

The organic 3 grain tempeh I picked up at Trader Jo’s has soybeans, brown rice, barley and millet as its ingredients.  Even though your package may say use straight out of the plastic packet it comes encased in – Don’t.  Steam it for 15 minutes and you will have a milder tasting tempeh that can pick up flavors instead of releasing them.  This is just a trick I learned recently and I guess vegan restaurants know about it because I have enjoyed this protein before but I hated tempeh dishes I created at home because it tasted kinda raw and bitter right out of its container.Tempeh loaf cut into four rectangles in steamer basket before recipe can be prepared.

Taking a recipe from Native Foods Celebration, adapting it to what I had on hand, subtracting the oil completely and halving the ingredients, I proceeded to combine the following ingredients.

Note to self:  Next time I use a food processor not the Nutri Bullet.

8 oz tempeh

2 Tbsp. red peppers, diced

2 Tbsp. red onion, diced

1/4 cup cilantro, chopped

1 whole lemon, zested and its juice

1/2 tsp. sea salt

1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper

1/4 tsp. garlic powder

1/2 tsp. cumin

Process the tempeh, transfer to a bowl and add all the ingredients and mix well.  Form into little patties and pan fry with just a spritz of your favorite oil.  Flip over the patties when they  have been seared and are golden brown.Serve with remoulade or any dip or relish.

Delicious and these small morsels actually tasted or had the texture of crab cakes.  They were not fishy but that’s what they reminded me of.  Otherwise, they are in a class of their own.

This is a keeper of an idea and I plan on branching out and adding fresh basil in the summer with bay leaf powder instead of cumin or even adding Indian spices like garam masala or try giving it a Middle Eastern twist by adding something like zatar.  The basic tempeh whirred and add some diced up veggies and spices and herbs, then make cakes is the germ and gem of this concept.

They would make great appetizers.  I saved what I didn’t eat and had them without even re-heating them with different dips as well as alone.  If you can stop eating them you could keep them in your fridge all week long.



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