Spicy Tempeh

5 05 2011

I love when I need to cook with wine, but don’t have a bottle already uncorked anywhere in the house. Because that means I usually end up going to the liquor store and buying those little 4 packs with the baby bottles of wine. And I love those. They taste like garbarge most of the time, but something about plowing through 4 plastic bottles of wine with a meal is really gratifying and trashy-chic to me.

I also need to say that I made this great meal. Green-chili-cheese mashed potatoes, fried leeks, steamed broccoli and tempeh. Well, I re-heated the potatoes and leeks from yesterday, but I steamed that broccoli and cooked that tempeh. Ate with the cat and left the yummy leftovers out for my boyfriend to eat when he got home late from work. And you know what he ate instead? A chicken patty and a slice of pizza. Screw you dude.

He’s working for TruGreen now. I guess with a lame-o corporate job, you gotta play the role of a lame-o corporate shmuck. Gimme my pizza and patties.

Anyways. This is a fantastic marinade for the tempeh. Sort of wanted to melt cheese over the whole thing. But what don’t I want to melt cheese over? Serve it up with mashed potaties and greenz!!

Spicy Tempeh
Adapted from Veganomicon

1 package tempeh
1/2 cup red wine (I used Cabernet..but it doesn’t really matter, just nothing too sweet. Or you can just use veggie broth if you have no wine on hand. But really…you should always have wine on hand. In hand.)
1/4 cup hot sauce (Whatever your fave is)
2 tbs. olive oil
2 tbs. soy sauce
Juice of 1 lemon
2-3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. oregano
Pinch of cayenne

Bring a pot of water to a boil.
Whisk all the marinade ingredients together in a medium-size bowl.
Cut the tempeh in half, widthwise, then cut each half diagonally, to form 4 large triangles. When the water is boiling, lower the heat to a simmer and cook the tempeh for 10 minutes.
Using tongs, place the tempeh in the marinade and let sit for 1 hour, turning the tempeh occasionally.
Heat some oil in a pan. Cook the tempeh for about 10 minutes, turning often and spooning on some marinade as you go.

Vegetable Melt with Wasabi Mayo

2 05 2011

Besides food, music is one of the biggest passions in life. I grew up listening to punk rock and have been playing power chords since I was 15. Sadly though, my guitars have been collecting dust for a while. Besides picking one up to play the occasional Violent Femmes or Patsy Cline cover, it has been sucking to see music slowly fading out of my life. But. I see that changing very shortly.

I have recently come into possession of a banjo and thanks to Ebay, a vintage Horner accordion. Pretty much my dream instruments. And after a weekend out in my college town of Amherst, MA and re-connecting with people who inspire me on so many levels, including musically, I am back in the music bizz. I will learn how to play my sad accordion clown music, some lively banjo ditties, and I think that will push me on the way to being more one with myself. Oh yeah.

These little veggie melts make me feel pretty at one with everything too. Mild Muenster melting into a creamy rollwich (I sort of roll them up when I eat them. Allows me to eat more furiously), with a hint of wasabi spice and crunchy soy-sauce covered veggies. Wicked rules.

Vegetable Melt with Wasabi Mayo
Adapted from Quick Vegetarian Pleasures

1 tsp. wasabi powder
3 tbs. mayonnaise (or Trader Joes Wasabi Mayo)
1 tb. olive oil
8 oz. mushrooms, sliced
1 red bell pepper, cored & cut into thin strips
1 bunch broccoli, cut into small pieces
2 tsps. soy sauce
2 pita pockets
1 1/4 cup Muenster cheese, grated

Mix the wasabi with 1 tsp. water, or just enough to make it the consistency of mustard. Let sit for 10 minutes. Place the mayo in a small bowl and stir until smooth, then stir in the wasabi paste. Set aside.

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and saute for 5 minutes. Stir in the pepper and broccoli, sprinkling on 1 tb. of water. Cover and cook until the broccoli is tender, but still a little crisp, about 5 minutes.

Remove the cover from pan. If there is any water remaining, raise the heat to high to evaporate it. Stir frequently. Pour on the soy sauce, tossing to coat. Remove from heat.

Preheat the broiler. Split the pitas to make 4 discs. Place them on a baking sheet, then spoon on the vegetable mixture. Sprinkle on the cheese and broil until melted, about 3 minutes. Spoon on the wasabi mayo!