When we started eating mainly vegetarian, we held a popular misconception: eating no meat = eating meat substitutes. Luckily, we came to find it was perfectly doable to eat a vegetable-based diet that was free from fake sausage or tofu hot dogs. Our protein sources come mainly from beans, lentils, nuts, seeds, cheese, and dairy, and it’s fairly easy to get the recommended daily amount.
One unique protein-rich vegetable product we’ve grown to love is tempeh. Similar to tofu, it’s made from soybeans, but it’s a whole soybean product, which gives it a firmer texture. It may seem a little bit “hippy vegetarian-ish”, but with some spices or a tasty marinade, it can make for a delicious entree that even a meat-lover can appreciate. (Another favorite in that category: our best Lemon Tahini Sauce.)
Alex had the idea of chopping the tempeh into cubes, roasting it tossed with cornmeal and olive oil, and serving it over a salad of crispy vegetables. We paired it with a creamy honey chipotle dressing made with a yogurt base. The flavors and textures worked together marvelously, and it’s the picture of health in a bowl. We ate it for several days straight because it was so tasty – and we felt glowingly healthy afterwards.
Now, enough about tempeh – we have some news: we’re going to Italy and Greece! After a long winter, we needed something to look forward to. We’ve decided to take a little trip, first to the Greek island of Santorini, where we’ll meet my sister and dear childhood friend, and then to Italy where we’ll repeat our honeymoon in Rome and the Amalfi Coast (above is a photo from Capri we took on our honeymoon 7 years ago.). The Mediterranean is one of our favorite places in the world, and we can’t wait to share all about it with you when we return.
Feel free to follow along real-time with our adventures on Instagram! In the meantime, we have some fabulous guest posters lined up while we’re away.Print
Use a yogurt with a thin consistency instead of a thick texture (like Greek yogurt); a thin consistency makes it easily pourable. Since this recipe uses only the adobo sauce from the can of chipotle peppers, you can freeze the peppers for later use.
- 2 8-ounce packages tempeh
- 2 tablespoons cornmeal
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 12 ounces salad greens (about 12 cups)
- 1 cucumber
- 3 carrots
- ½ red cabbage
- 2 green onions
- 1 cup fresh or frozen corn
- 1 cup plain yogurt (not Greek; we used Traders Point Creamery yogurt, which has a thin, pourable consistency)
- 1 can chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (enough for 1 tablespoon adobo sauce)
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1 1/2 tablespoons honey
- 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
- ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
- Preheat the oven the 425°F.
- Cut the tempeh into thirds lengthwise, then into bite-sized cubes. In a bowl, mix the tempeh with 2 tablespoons cornmeal, 2 tablespoons olive oil, and ½ teaspoon kosher salt, stirring until thoroughly combined. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and add the tempeh pieces, then place it in the oven and bake for 12 minutes, stirring once.
- Meanwhile, wash all vegetables. Thinly slice the cucumber, carrots, red cabbage, and green onions. If necessary, thaw the corn.
- For the dressing, mix together 1 cup plain yogurt, 1 tablespoon of adobo sauce, 1/2 teaspoon cumin, 1 1/2 tablespoons honey, 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar, and 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt. Mix to combine; add a small amount of water if the dressing is not pourable.
- To serve, place the salad greens in a large bowl, then top with vegetables and warm tempeh pieces. Drizzle with honey chipotle dressing.
About the Authors
Cookbook Author and writer
Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.
Cookbook Author and photographer
Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.