Monday, May 31, 2010

ultimate vegan BBQ

i don't like tofu. there. i said it. and forget about those frozen patties and processed soy products (full of neurotoxins). it's tempeh, glorious tempeh that dominates my "meat replacement" preferences. our memorial day menu featured barbecue tempeh sandwiches, carrot-cayenne coleslaw, california guacamole (hass avocados, cilantro, red onion, garlic, cumin, salt, lime juice, serrano pepper or chile powder), strawberry shortcake with balsamic chocolate sauce, and plenty of rum punch.

the sandwich recipe is adapted from bryant terry's vegan soul kitchen (my new bible). one taste of the hot/smoky/sweet sauce and i had really died and gone to vegan heaven.

BBQ tempeh sandwich

  • 3 tbsp apple cider vinegar (Braggs, if you can find it)
  • 3 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 3/4 c. tamari (kyle thinks tamari makes a big difference here so don't sub soy sauce)
  • 1/4 c. your favorite organic ketchup
  • 2 chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 c. agave nectar (or honey)
  • 1 tbsp ground cumin
  • pinch of cayenne
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 2 packages of tempeh, sliced to desired serving size
  • loaf of ciabatta bread
  • veganaise or mayo
  • your favorite coleslaw
Combine all the ingredients (except for the last four, obviously) in a food processor and puree until smooth. If you don't own a grill (neither do we), place the tempeh along the bottom of an oven-safe dish. Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes. Toast slices of ciabatta under the broil. Assemble sandwiches, dress with mayo and coleslaw. Dig in!

i also made shortcake muffins from this super easy recipe and served them with fresh strawberries, chocolate sauce (1/4 c. plain soymilk + 4 oz. chocolate chips), and balsamic reduction (balsamic vinger + sugar/honey/agave). what I should have known was that reductions take FOREVER. after ten minutes I gave up and turned off the stove. twenty minutes later it was perfectly reduced. and delicious enough to share with our neighbors.

it seems like there are two types of shortcakes: the biscuit variety and the spongy, cakey variety. is there a regional difference? i would love to know.

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