Tempeh is a traditional soy product originally from Indonesia. It is especially popular on the island of Java, where tempeh is a staple source of protein.
Tempeh is made by natural culturing and controlled fermentation process which binds soybeans into firm cakes, which is very similar to a firm vegetarian burger patty.
It is unique among major traditional soy foods because it is the only one which didn’t originate from the Sinosphere cuisine. Tempeh has a meaty and nutty texture, and, just like tofu, it absorbs flavors of surrounding ingredients very well. It is a very popular alternative for meat for vegetarian cooks.
The soy carbohydrates found in tempeh become more digestible thanks to the fermentation process. This tempeh “chicken” salad recipe is made with tempeh as a vegetarian and vegan chicken substitute. Add raisins, slivered almonds and increase the amount of curry in order to turn this tempeh salad into a curried tempeh chicken salad. This recipe will do best if it is made ahead of time. Therefore, it has plenty of time to chill in the fridge, allowing tempeh to soak up all the flavors from other ingredients.
Tempeh "Chicken" Salad
- 12 ounces of tempeh cubed
- 2 tablespoons of red bell peppers minced
- 1 stalk of celery minced
- 2 - 3 scallions minced
- 1 ⁄2 cup of regular mayonnaise or 1⁄2 cup of soy mayonnaise more or less to taste
- 1 teaspoon of lemon juice
- 1 large dill pickle minced
- 1 tablespoon of fresh parsley chopped
- 1 tablespoon of yellow mustard spicy golden brown is good, too
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- In the first step, place the cubed tempeh in a saucepan of boiling, salted water.
- Now, reduce heat to low. Simmer for about 11 minutes, then drain and set aside to cool. Tip: You can toss it in the fridge if you want.
- In the next step, combine the pepper, pickle, scallion, celery and parsley in a large bowl.
- Run a knife through the cubed tempeh, only to give it a rough chop. Tip: This is optional, since the cubes work fine, too.
- Take the bowl and add chopped tempeh into it, along with the pepper, salt, lemon, mustard, and mayonnaise. In the third step, fold everything together and cover.
- Now, refrigerate for at least half an hour in order to let the flavors combine.
- This will keep covered in the fridge for about 2 to 3 days.