Szechwan Tempeh

This is a great recipe to have in your repertoire for those days when you truly only have 15 minutes to make a meal.  It is that quick and doesn’t require anything to be prepped ahead.  And, it is really yummy.  Even my kids, who aren’t particularly fond of tempeh, ate it with gusto.  Serve the tempeh and sauce over any cooked grain or over noodles with some steamed broccoli or greens on the side and you have a complete, well-balanced, delicious meal!  This recipe will serve 4 people with a grain and vegetable.   

This recipe is slightly adapted from Feeding the Whole Family, by Cynthia Lair, a book I highly recommend. 

  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil or refined coconut oil
  • 1 (8-oz) package of tempeh, sliced into 1/4 inch strips
  • 2 Tablespoons white miso
  • 1/4 to 1/3 cup water
  • 2 Tablespoons tamari
  • 2 Tablespoons mirin
  • 2 Tablespoons balsalmic vinegar
  • 1-2 Tablespoons brown rice syrup or other sweetener (I cut this to 1 Tablespoon, but used agave, which is sweeter.  Next time, I’ll probably use btw 1-2 Tablespoons of coconut sugar – you can always add more if necessary)
  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil or hot pepper oil
  • 1 scallion, thinly sliced, for garnish

Heat a large skillet over medium heat, add oil, then add tempeh in a single layer.  Do this in batches if it doesn’t all fit at once.  Saute until browned on both sides and turn heat off.  In a small bowl, whisk together the miso and water until the miso is dissolved.  Add tamari, mirin, vinegar, sweetener, and sesame oil, and whisk again.  Pour sauce over tempeh and bring to a low simmer (keep the heat low to protect the beneficial enzymes in the miso).  Simmer for 5 minutes or so, or until the sauce has reduced and thickened.  Garnish with scallions and serve.  Enjoy!

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