Friday, February 22, 2008

Baja-style Grilled Tempeh Tacos

Where did the week go? Holy cow! I've only cooked one meal since Monday, because Brad was sick on Tuesday and we just had soup, Wednesday I made some awesome tempeh tacos (more on that in a second), last night I was at a charity benefit dinner and silent auction, and today I just had a really rough and disappointing afternoon, and didn't feel like cooking dinner. We don't expect to be home for dinner on Saturday or Sunday, so I won't be cooking then, either. Which means the seitan pot pie, chickpea cutlets, stuffed bell peppers and chipotle bean burritos will all make appearances on next week's menu instead. And that's ok.

I really did cook this week, however, even if I didn't prepare a lot of dinners! I made tempeh tacos, a batch of seitan, and a Guatemalan cheesecake, among other things. I know there's something else, but it's escaping me at the moment. And that, people, is why you should blog daily, and not try to recall it all at a later date. They say the mind is the first to go, and dude, if that's the case, I'm screwed. I'm only 32!

But I digress. Let me get back to the topic of food, and tell you about these tacos I made on Wednesday. They were awesome! I used the Baja-style grilled tempeh tacos recipe from Veganomicon. I'm not going to post the recipe, since I don't want to infringe on their copyrighted materials or anything, but I can give you a basic idea.

The tacos had several components. First was a tangy cabbage slaw, which was made of shredded cabbage and carrots, and diced pickled jalapeno peppers, tossed with lime juice and vinegar. Next was a lime cream sauce, made of plain soy yogurt, lime juice, grapeseed oil and cilantro. The third major component was the tempeh itself. It was my first time cooking with tempeh, and I was pleasantly surprised. I'd read about it before, and wasn't particularly tantalized by the description. Cakes of fermented (read: moldy) soybeans?? Are you kidding me? But I was pleasantly surprised when I tasted it. The tempeh was simmered for a bit, which I'm told removes bitterness, then marinated in a lovely, tangy, zesty sauce, before being grilled. Finally it was sliced into little strips, much like beef in fajitas.

Once all of those goodies were prepared, all that remained was to assemble the tacos themselves. We used flour tortillas, because I'll be damned if I could find corn tortillas at any of the three stores I tried. What the hell? So we had the tortillas, topped with cabbage slaw and tempeh, some soy cheddar cheese, and the lime cream sauce. YUM! They were fantastic, and surprisingly filling. We were each figuring on having three tacos beforehand, but by the end of the second, there was just no way we could eat more.

These are something I would definitely make again. The only thing I would change is to use a vegan sour cream instead of yogurt for the lime cream sauce, but outside of that, they were great! My first recipe from Veganomicon! So far the cookbook gets two very enthusiastic thumbs up! I highly recommend it.

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