And topped off with a creamy, roasted garlic walnut sauce. Oh yes. Tempeh has only been a part of my life for the past year, so I have to make up for lost time. Here’s a little bit about how amazing the stuff is and its plan to take over the world. It’s essentially a fermented soybean cake that’s much less processed than tofu and packed full of protein, fiber, calcium and iron. The flavor is earthy, nutty and delicious. Yum. Up until this point I’ve only quickly marinated it – then pan-fried it, like here and here. It’s pretty good that way but you must try it like this: First marinated in harissa, then steamed in beer = sweet, smokey, tender and delicious. After the beer is absorbed and evaporated, add a little oil to the pan and fry for crispy, irresistible edges. So good.
Cut tempeh in even, smallish chunks, as shown. Smother and cover in Harissa, salt & pepper. Let marinate.
Cook that farro.
Roast those pretty little beets.
Slow roast these walnuts and garlic on low heat in olive oil. Add some salt and pepper here.
Steam the tempeh in beer and cover until all the liquid is evaporated. Add high heat oil and pan fry.
Combine ingredients for sauce and blend. Taste for salt and pepper.
Ingredients for Tempeh
1 package of tempeh
1/2 cup of harissa
1/2 cup of your favorite beer
salt & pepper
dash of high heat oil for pan-frying
Ingredients for Walnut Garlic Sauce
1/2 cup walnuts
5 to 6 garlic cloves
1 tablespoon harissa
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
salt & pepper
4 medium sized beets
2 cups farro
parsley to top it off
Cut tempeh in even, medium chunks as shown. Place pieces in a bowl and cover in harissa, salt and pepper. Cook the farro per package directions. Wash and cut the beets and carrots. Roast on 350 F until tender, about 10 minutes. Place harissa soaked tempeh in pan with beer and cover with a large lid to steam on medium heat. While the tempeh is cooking, make the dressing: In a small pan, add olive oil, garlic and walnuts and slowly roast on low heat until fragrant. Combine all ingredients for the sauce in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Taste for salt and pepper. Add a tablespoon of water if needed to thin it out. After the beer is evaporated, remove the lid, add some high heat oil (I used rice bran oil) and fry on medium high heat until light brown and crispy. Assemble dish as shown and enjoy.
If you want to skip the beer, just use 1/2 cup of water combined with a shot of apple cider vinegar.
Harissa can be found at Whole Foods, Fresh Market or your local ethnic market. Or go all out and make your own.
More tips on how to prepare tempeh here.