So by now, maybe you've figured out I'm in love with tempeh! (And maybe tacos too!) I want to use it everywhere now and definitely have been going back through all the ideas/recipes I had seen before where people used it and I turned up my nose. One way I had heard over and over for tempeh to be used was tempeh tacos so now I had to try it!
Once a week my husband's parents come over for supper and when we asked them if they were up for trying tempeh, my mother-in-law said she was definitely in just based on how much I was raving about it on this blog! Too sweet and supportive! I knew they were in but I knew my mom would not want to try them so I decided I would make two kinds of tacos for supper, one batch of tempeh tacos and one batch of bean taco filling.
I started each with the same base of sauteed onions, then added some diced cremini mushrooms to both (more in the beans since the tempeh already has so much flavour on it's own) and browned those as well. I added the tempeh to one pan as well as some tomato paste and homemade taco seasoning and let the tempeh brown slightly to really get that delicious brown, toasty flavour and once it browned added some water and let it simmer and really absorb the flavours of the now sauce. For the beans, I added a mix of navy beans and black beans to the other pan, with the tomato paste and seasoning but immediately added water to the beans since they don't need to brown at all. I let them both simmer until the liquid had reduced down and thickened up and added just a tiny bit of tamari to boost the flavours a bit. I served them in hard shells with toppings (lettuce, diced tomato, homemade tomatillo salsa, homemade guacamole, diced onions, julienned radish, taco sauce and Tofutti sour cream).My in-laws both went with one of each kind and liked both! My mom of course went with the beans and really enjoyed them as well! Ryan went with two tempeh ones, then a taco salad made with a mix of both so I think he liked them too...haha! I had the tempeh tacos and again...I love tempeh! It makes such a great taco since it has a bit of crunch/texture, nutty flavour and really absorbs the flavour of the seasoning. We had leftovers which I am so looking forward to today! I think this may be my new go-to taco!
I would love to share the tastes of this one with you so here's the recipe for the seasoning I used and the salsa I made which was really simple!
2 tbsp paprika
1 tbsp onion powder
1 tbsp garlic powder
1 tbsp cumin
1 tbsp chili powder
1/2 tbsp oregano
1/2 tbsp ground coriander
1 tsp dried thyme leaves
2 tsp - 1 tbsp salt (it's totally up to you how much you add)
Mix all the seasonings together in a small bowl, stirring until well combined. Add to your beans or tempeh by generous pinch and keep tasting until you find the right level of seasoning for you.
10-12 medium sized tomatillos (I got super lucky at the local market last weekend)
1 medium sized white onion
3 large cloves garlic, peeled
1 jalapeno pepper, washed and left whole
1-2 tbsp olive oil
Salt and Pepper
1 cup vegetable broth
Preheat the oven to 425F. Quarter the tomatillos and the onion and place on a large sheet pan. Add the garlic and jalapeno to the pan and drizzle the olive oil over all of it. Spread the oil onto all the ingredients with your hands, it's the best way! Place in the hot oven for about 45-60 minutes, until the skins of the tomatillos and the onions are browning a bit. Once this happens, remove it from the oven then add the tomatillos, onions and garlic to the jar of your blender. Since jalapenos are never consistently hot, I only added about half of the pepper at first without seeds. Blend on high until mostly smooth but make sure you leave a vent for that steam to get out or you might have a mess on your hands! Taste it...this is the most important part of cooking I think. I add some of the vegetable broth at this point to thin it out a bit without watering it down flavour wise. Blend again to combine and refrigerate it covered if you are making it ahead of time.