I never used to like tempeh. In fact, I found it to be odd with it's shiny, bumpy exterior, and always opted for it's unfermented counterpart, tofu, instead. It wasn't until I started growing tired of the texture of tofu that I decided to give tempeh a try. And can I tell you something? I don't even eat tofu anymore. Tempeh is so much more flavorful and easier to digest. Not to mention, the texture is superior to that of squishy, water packed tofu.
This has been my go-to tempeh recipe for a few years now. It's sweet, salty and ridiculously easy to prepare. Which means I no longer have an excuse to stuff my face with plain ass tempeh. Although I do love plain ass tempeh, it's so much more enjoyable when it's marinated in something flavorful. And if you get bored with tamari, dijon mustard makes a great substitute. Same goes for barbecue sauce and worcestershire sauce. So many marinating options!
WALNUT ENCRUSTED TEMPEH
1 block original tempeh
1/4 cup tamari soy sauce
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 tsp minced garlic, optional
1/2 cup walnut meal
Cut each block of tempeh into four triangular segments (or square, whichever you prefer). From those segments, slice them, widthwise, into three even segments. If you can only slice them in half, that's fine - but the thinner you can get the tempeh, the better. You should now have 12 triangular pieces of tempeh. Place them in a large plastic bag and set aside.
In a small bowl, stir together the tamari, maple syrup and garlic, if using. Pour into bag, seal and toss to coat tempeh. Store in the refrigerator, overnight, until ready to use. The longer you let the tempeh marinate, the better.
Preheat oven to 400˚F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside. Spread the walnut meal onto a flat surface and coat one side of the tempeh. Line, walnut coated side up, on the prepared baking sheet and bake at 400˚F for 20 minutes, just until the walnut meal turns golden. Serve immideately.
Yield: 2-4 servings