February 2013 archive

Mongolian BBQ Tempeh: GF Vegan, Allergenless Opt

Mongolian Tempeh a la Quinoa

I am so delighted to share one of the tastiest Vegan recipes I have ever eaten! It’s a vegan twist on the classic Mongolian BBQ Beef= Mongolian Tempeh stir fry. Now for all of you who just shut off when I said the word ‘vegan’, I want to assure this isn’t anything like that bland tofu dish your hippie friends brought to a potluck that made history as the worst debauchery of tofu cuisine. It’s about as far from flavorless, texture-less vegan-nightmare foods you could imagine. This dish has rich, complex flavors thanks to the spicy sauce, crispy veggies and yummy tempeh. I assure you, with all this yumminess in a bowl, you won’t miss animal-based proteins at all. And you might even like the veggies you don’t usually like when covered in this sauce. Tempeh is made from fermented whole soybeans (or other legumes!), unlike tofu which is more processed and doesn’t contain the whole bean. Tempeh takes on the flavor of sauces beautifully and has a meaty texture that you can really sink your teeth into, but is still easy to chew. Essentially, it’s the perfect protein. If you haven’t tried tempeh before, I think you will be wonderfully surprised when you have your first bite of this phenomenal dish. If you’ve tried it and disliked it, this stir fry will rekindle your love! It is so well seasoned and spicy and saucy that you won’t believe your eating something so healthy! My tummy is feeling much better lately…great enough to eat spicy things! This is the second time this week we’ve made this dish, and we made it last week too. I’m really excited about having the leftovers for dinner tomorrow. Sigh…can you tell I’m a little obsessed?!?!

I’ve broken the recipe down into steps, which follow the ingredients, and included the ingredients separately to make natural ‘faux hoisin sauce’, to enjoy with other recipes.


Tastes like heaven: soy tempeh, carrots, broccoli, snow peas, criminis, green onions on Quinoa,

This recipe was inspired by ‘Chloe’s Kitchen‘s’ recipe of Mongolia BBQ Seitan. Seitan is a wheat-based protein similar in texture to meat, and so we’ve heavily adapted this yummy to make it free of common allergens like wheat/gluten, dairy, eggs, and processed sugars (and potentially soy-free).

Chickpea tempeh w/ rice
The original recipe calls for hoisin sauce, which consists usually of soy sauce, sugar, caramel food coloring and flavoring/spices. Ick! I found a recipe for creating a delicious ‘faux-hoisin sauce‘ using nut/seed butter and soy sauce. I’ve included it in the ‘sauce’. Enjoy this healthful, spiced, delicious recipe atop brown rice or quinoa. 
Note about measuring:
soy tempeh & quinoa = magic. everytime.
I’m going to be honest. I’m not a measurer. I’m not a follow the recipe by the book sort of person. I usually actually measure vinegars and lemon juices, but for the rest, I throw in a dollop and then smell the resultant concoction. Does it need more lemon juice? I throw in a titch? It needs more Spice! In goes a little more hot sauce. That’s how I roll, partly because I’m too tired to measure everything exactly, and partly because I’m a taste-and-adjust sort of cook. Do whatever makes you feel comfortable. And as long as you are relatively close to the amounts listed, you should be peachy. Learn to guestimate. It takes practice to get comfortable knowing what a 1/2 teaspoon is compared to whole!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Mongolian BBQ Tempeh Stir Fry Recipe

A Gluten Free, Vegan Dish (potentially Soy/Nut Free, see ‘Allergen Check’ after instructions)

Serves 6-8 people (half batch = 3-4)

~heavily adapted from ‘Chloe’s Kitchen’ Cookbook~
~this is a double recipe. trust me. you will want left overs! just throw the leftovers back in the frying pan to heat them up for a snack/dinner/lunch the next day.~
This recipe comes together faster than it looks. Bring out everything in advanced…save yourself all the trips back to the fridge! Below, I’ve broken down the steps into manageable steps. The italicized ingredients are the recipe for making faux hoisin sauce, so if you can find a natural hoisin, substitute it for this made-from-scratch recipe. Use 1/2 cup of store-bought hoisin.

 Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons + 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon nut/seed butter (tahini/almond butter/sunflower butter/peanut butter)
  • 2 teaspoon agave/honey/rice syrup (or molasses => not gluten-free unless made from sorghum)
  • 1.25 teaspoons seasoned rice vinegar
  • a garlic clove, finely minced/microplaned
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • (optional) 1 1/3 teaspoons sesame seed oil
  • (optional) 2/3 teaspoon Chinese hot sauce (more or less to taste)
  • 1/2 cup water/tea/vegetable stock
  • 2 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoon agave/rice syrup/honey
  • 2 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1-2 teaspoons chili-garlic sauce sriracha)
  • 4 teaspoons grated fresh ginger (galanagal is fantastic if you can find it)
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon (trust me. doesn’t taste like cookies.)
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon of Chinese five spice powder (optional. but delicious!)
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 an onion, chopped (use 3/4 of an onion if you’re making a double batch
  • 4 cloves of garlic, or more, to taste (garlic is delicious Lyme and general bacteria fighter, so I always include a lot in my recipes!)
  • 6-8 oz mushrooms stemmed and sliced (portobello, crimini, shitake, button, brown), about 5-15 button mushrooms or baby portobellos aka crimini’s (depending on if you’re cooking a double batch, or single.)
  • 4-8 oz, snow peas, strings removed (or a good cup, cut) (depending on if you’re cooking a double batch, or single.)
  • 1 ‘block’ of tempeh, cut into thin strips (use 2 blocks if you want lots of tempeh in the leftovers!)
  •  add in any veggies you have on hand! broccoli, snap peas, snow peas, carrots, bell peppers, zucchini, frozen peas, bok choi…any vegetables work beautifully! = 4 cups or more if making a double batch!
  • 2-4 cups cooked brown rice/quinoa/etc (depending how much grain you want! and whether you’re making a double batch, or single.)
  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced on bias
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 2-3 tablespoons oil (for frying) – we used olive oil, just watch it to make sure its not too hot (coconut or organic canola works)

Break it down now. The method:

Sauce:

1. Whisk up 1/2 cup ‘faux hoisin sauce‘ (or naturally sweetened hoisin sauce). It will not mix well, but that’s just fine. Once it goes into the wok/fry pan you won’t notice to isn’t emulsified.

  • 2 tablespoons + 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon nut/seed butter (tahini/almond butter/sunflower butter/peanut butter)
  • 2 teaspoon agave/honey/rice syrup (or molasses = not gluten-free unless made from sorghum)
  • 1.25 teaspoons seasoned rice vinegar
  • a garlic clove, finely minced/microplaned
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • (optional) 1 1/3 teaspoons sesame seed oil
  • (optional) 2/3 teaspoon Chinese hot sauce (more or less to taste)
chickpea tempeh & rice = gf, v, soy/nut free

2. Add the following ingredients to the ‘faux hoisin sauce’. Whisk, then set aside. (This Mongolian sauce is a double-recipe. If you have a lot of veggies and tempeh, use it all. If not, save some in the fridge for your next batch of Mongolian tempeh. There will be a next batch. Seriously.)

  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoon agave/rice syrup/honey
  • 2 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1-2 teaspoons chili-garlic sauce

Spice & Veggies

3. Measure out Spice Mixture, and set aside. (This Spice Mix is a double-recipe. If you have a lot of veggies and tempeh, use it all. If you love medium spiciness, use it all. If not, save some in the fridge for your next batch of Mongolian tempeh)

  • 4 teaspoons grated fresh ginger (galanagal is fanastic if you can find it)
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon of chinese five spice powder (optional. but delicious!)
  • 3 cloves of garlic

4. Prepare vegetables/tempeh. (don’t worry about getting the exact right amount of veggies. essentially you want about 1 cup of each veggie, and hopefully upwards of 4 different veggies. we use about 4 cups of veggies, which will cook down a lot! Variety in veggies is part of what makes this dish so nutritious and beautiful

  • 6-8 oz mushrooms stemmed and sliced (portobello, crimini, shitake, button, brown), about 5-15 button mushrooms or baby portobellos aka crimini’s (depending on if you’re cooking a double batch, or single.)
  • 4-8 oz, snow peas, strings removed (or a good cup, cut) (depending on if you’re cooking a double batch, or single.)
  • 1 ‘block’ of tempeh, cut into thin strips (use 2 blocks if you want lots of tempeh in the leftovers!)
  •  add in any veggies you have on hand! broccoli, snap peas, snow peas, carrots, bell peppers, zucchini, frozen peas, bok choi…any vegetables work beautifully! = 4 cups or more if making a double batch!
  • 1/2 an onion, chopped (use 3/4 of an onion if you’re making a double batch
  • 4 cloves of garlic, or more, to taste (garlic is delicious Lyme and general bacteria fighter, so I always include a lot in my recipes!)

Toppings:

  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced on bias
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro

Grain:

  • 2-4 cups cooked brown rice/quinoa/etc (depending how much grain you want!)

Directions

sizzling, steaming deliciousness
  1. Whisk faux-hoisin, water, soy sauce, sugar syrup, lemon juice and chili-garlic sauce in a small bowl. Set aside.
  2. Heat oil over medium high heat in a large skillet. Stir fry mushrooms and seitan until lightly browned and mushrooms have released their juices. Add Spice Mixture and cook a few more minutes. 
  3. Add in harder vegetables (carrots, broccoli etc) until they begin to cook, softening a little.
  4. Add the sauce and snow peas and reduce heat to medium. Let cook until sauce has thickened, which might happen quite quickly. Remove from heat and sprinkle on top scallions and cilantro and then serve over the rice.
  5. Eat with gusto while warm. xoxo


chickpea tempeh, snap peas, crimini’s, cilantro, onions, scallions

 

Allergen Check: Want to make this recipe ‘free’ of certain allergens? Make sure you read these tips before choosing ingredients, particularly if the person you are cooking for has allergies! When I use common allergen foods that I am not personally allergic to in my own cooking, I make sure to use a clean spoon when dipping, say, into the peanut butter, and make sure that spoon either goes in my mouth :D, or directly into the sink, not into the jam jar or butter, for instance. Using clean implements is a good practice anyways.

Gluten-Free (use GF tamari, Braggs Liquid Aminos or Coconut Aminos)
Soy-Free (use Coconut Amino’s in place of soysauce, and Chickpea tempeh)
Processed Sugar Free (possibly use Stevia if trying to replace all sugars? try experimenting with little amounts of Rice Syrup, my favorite low sugar syrup, or honey)
Nut Free (use a creamy seed butter, such as Tahini (Sesame butter), or Sunflower seed butter)

Droplets

It’s surprising how just the smell of alcohol swabs, the taste of saline in my mouth, is enough to make me scared. Not scared of the actual infusion of a 1/4 dose of minocycline. What makes me feel ill before the medication actually is even hooked up to me is the knowledge that in hours, or days I am going to be feeling terrible. Or if this tiny dose doesn’t do much to make me herx (ie: all my symptoms will get infinitely worse because of the toxins released from the bacteria dying in my body), when we increase it to 1/2 a dose, and work our way over a few weeks, or a month to a full dose…well, then I will start to feel lousy.

It is really, really easy to get used to not doing IV meds. Because when you are on them, you feel terrible and ill all the time, and when you go off them, you do go downhill a little, but gradually. It’s nothing like this burning pain that started up in my chest 5 minutes ago. And we’ve only dripped in about 1/8 of the 1/4 dose I will be doing tonight.

I only was infusing for less than a minute before I could feel the cold hands of the drug sizzle out through the end of my peripherally-inserted-central-catheter into my heart. The best way I can describe it is it feel like heartburn, but literally in your heart. It feels like butterflies flapping around the cage of your abdomen, but instead in your rib cage. It is a cold feeling that seeps over you, kind of like what I imagine it feels like when those humans in the ‘Invasion of the Body Snatchers’ get taken over. This feel creeps over you and then suddenly it’s all around you, all in your lungs and your head and your heart and you feel like you can’t get enough air. It makes me want to cough until I can clear my lungs, but that won’t happen. You can’t get out what you’ve put into your veins. Only your organs can filter it out as best they can.

On the bright side, I only have to infuse ever 3 days or something like that. So basically when infusing, it feels scary and painful, and after that I just have to wait for my worst symptoms to peak. Easy peasy. Beats an IV every day!

You know what makes infusions fly by? The Halifax Comedy Fest. And coconut ice cream, with frozen raspberrys and chocolate chips. Pick your chocolate covered poision and put it together with your favorite CBC show, and basically that’s the making of a fantastic evening. And I can trick myself into thinking this ‘invisible’ clear fluid isn’t all over my body, trickling under my skin.

It is going to be fine. It will be fine. It was fine before. I can do this again. That’s what I need to remember.

I can keep doing this until I’m better or at least until the world runs out of Coconut Bliss ice cream. ~

%d bloggers like this: