Growing up in California, one of my favourite meals was scrambled eggs with Mexican chorizo sausage. Now I enjoy tempeh “chorizo” crumbled into scrambled tofu every bit as much. The “chorizo” can be made up ahead and frozen, then browned, crumbled, and added to recipes, rather than eaten on its own like a sausage patty—delicious in tacos, burritos, quiches, and empanadas.
8 oz (230 g) tempeh 1 tsp (5 mL) dark sesame oil 1 tsp (5 mL) extra-virgin olive oil 4 oz (115 g) firm tofu, mashed 2 Tbsp (30 mL) red wine vinegar 1 1/2 Tbsp (22 mL) low-sodium soy sauce 1 1/2 Tbsp (22 mL) cornmeal 3 garlic cloves, crushed 2 tsp (10 mL) paprika or sweet smoked paprika (pimenton) 2 tsp (10 mL) mashed chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, or chipotle or ancho chili powder (see sidebar below) 1 1/2 tsp (7 mL) brown sugar 1 tsp (5 mL) onion powder 3/4 tsp (4 mL) dried oregano 3/4 tsp (4 mL) ground cumin 3/8 tsp (1.8 mL) cinnamon 1/4 tsp (1 mL) fine salt
Cut tempeh into 1/2 in (1.25 cm) cubes. Heat oils over medium-high heat in medium seasoned cast iron skillet. When oils are hot, but not smoking, add tempeh and brown on all sides. Transfer browned tempeh to medium shallow bowl. Mash tempeh roughly with fork or potato masher.
Add remaining ingredients to bowl. Mix everything together well with clean hands. Form into 8 small patties.
Place patties in steamer basket or rack lined with cooking parchment. Steam, covered, over gently boiling water for 10 minutes. Remove patties to plate and cool.
Wrap well and refrigerate for up to 1 week. Patties can also be frozen on plate and, when fully frozen, placed in airtight container and frozen for future meals.
To brown before using in a recipe, cook patties in covered cast iron skillet, greased with a little olive or dark sesame oil, over medium heat for about 5 minutes per side.
Makes 8 patties or 4 servings.
Each serving (2 patties) contains: 174 calories; 14 g protein; 10 g total fat (2 g sat. fat, 0 g trans fat); 11 g carbohydrates; 6 g fibre; 353 mg sodium
Storing canned chipotle peppers for future use After opening the can and using what you need, pop each remaining chipotle pepper into a cavity of a plastic wrap-lined ice cube tray (the tray with smaller, round cavities work well for this), distributing the remaining sauce evenly among the peppers. Cover with plastic wrap and freeze solid. Then pop the frozen peppers into a freezer container and place back in the freezer. The peppers can be mashed to a pulp with a fork when frozen, making it easy to measure out the right amount.
source: "Tempeh for Dinner", alive #358, August 2012
These Asian-inspired salmon burgers won’t leave you missing the beef < or > the bun. And keep this fruity and fiery salsa in mind the next time you want to jazz up grilled chicken or taco night. Serrano pepper or chile de arbol would be good swaps for bird’s eye pepper in the salsa. You can even mix some Sriracha sauce into the burgers to further punch up the meal. Skin deep Skinless fish is the only way to go for burgers. A helpful fishmonger will kindly skin fillets for you before purchase. As an alternative to salmon, you can also blend up skinless fillets of arctic char or rainbow trout.
These whimsical weeknight quesadillas offer a great excuse to break out the long-forgotten waffle iron. The smoky, tangy pepper sauce is the perfect sidekick for this dish, but it’s also wonderful when tossed with pasta, stuffed into sandwiches, and slathered on burgers. TIP : When assembling quesadillas, keep fillings centred 1/2 in (1.25 cm) from the edge of the tortilla so they don’t spill over. TIP : Chipotle chiles are dried, smoked jalapenos. Adobo is a slightly sweet red sauce. Put them together in a can and they become a versatile pantry staple to add deep smoky heat to sauces, dips, marinades, and soups. No waffle iron? Then make these quesadillas using this skillet method. Place 1 tortilla in skillet, preferably cast iron, and cook over medium heat until dark spots appear and bottom is crispy, about 1 1/2 minutes. Turn over and cook until crispy and darkened on the other side. Remove tortilla from skillet and replace with another tortilla. Cook until darkened and crispy on one side, flip, and top with stuffing ingredients. Place crispy tortilla on top, press down gently, cover pan, and cook for 1 minute, or until cheese has melted.
This Mexican-Mediterranean hybrid dish gleans its tempered kick from parched ancho chilies, the dried form of poblano peppers known for their smoky quality and sweet to moderate heat. It’s a fantastic saucy, and comforting, appetizer or meal on its own. Serve with crusty bread to sop up every last bit of the red sauce, or spoon over cooked grain. Chili choices Experiment with different dried Mexican chili peppers in your dishes. Instead of ancho, other options, each with different heat levels and flavour nuances, include pasilla, guajillo, or morita. Look for them in Latin markets and some supermarkets. For leftover lovers Because the flavours in this dish only deepen with resting time, it’s a definite candidate for serving as leftovers; simply reheat in the oven or microwave. Cheezy choices If possible, compare labels and look for lower-sodium feta options. A ball of fresh mozzarella or bocconcini are great alternatives, or try a block of medium-firm tofu and substitute agave syrup in place of the honey for a vegan-friendly dish.
A good option for both backyard barbecues and healthy snacking, this creamy dip benefits from a little spicy crunch, courtesy of quick-pickled peppers. If you want your dip to have a smoky edge, blend in a chipotle-flavoured salsa. Or forgo the salsa and, instead, blend in a couple tablespoons of tomato paste and a single canned chipotle chili pepper. Extras of the pickled peppers are an exciting topping for burgers, sandwiches, and tacos. TIP : When using prepared chili pepper products such as bottled salsas, examine the ingredient list for items you really don’t want or need, namely sugar and high amounts of sodium.