Sweet and Savory Creole Tempeh
1 (8 ounce) block tempeh (I prefer the 3-grain variety) Marinade:
1 tablespoon oil
2 tablespoons + 2 teaspoons tamari (shoyu or other soy sauce should be ok, but tamari is preferred)
2 1/2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 1/2 tablespoons water
3/4 teaspoon paprika
3/4 teaspoon oregano
scant 1/4 teaspoon ground thyme (or 1/4 + 1/8 teaspoon dried thyme)
1/4 teaspoon + 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
scant 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (more if you like it spicy)
1/4 teaspoon + 1/8 teaspoon cumin
scant 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
scant 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1. Cut the tempeh as desired. I like to cut the whole block in 1/2 so there are 2 thick blocks, then I slice 1 of those blocks in 1/2 the other way (by thickness), so there are now 2 thin blocks and 1 thick block.
2. I then slice 1 of the thinner blocks into 6 little strips and leave the other thin block intact. I cut the thicker block into 20-25 cubes (which looks really small, but they expand a lot when you boil them in the next step).
3. Place the cut tempeh in boiling/simmering water for about 10-15 minutes. This boiling is important as it allows the tempeh to expand and eliminates any bitter taste. Mix together the marinade ingredients.
4. Once the tempeh is boiled and cooled down, marinate it for at least 5 hours. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Bake the tempeh for 8-9 minutes. Toss/flip the tempeh and bake about 5 more mintues.
5. You may need to increase baking time if your tempeh slices are bigger, but be very careful not to bake too long or the tempeh will dry out and lose its taste. It's done when the marinade is soaked up and the tempeh is firm (not crispy).
Source of recipe: Inspired by the "blackened tempeh" marinade from Ann Gentry's Real Food Daily. Modified for ingredient availability and to reduce caloric value.