Friday, April 1, 2011

Tempeh Sloppy Joes with Broccoli Slaw

Before switching to a vegan diet, every Friday night my husband and I would meet up after work and go to a local pub and eat some really unhealthy stuff.  It was the day of the week where we would just go crazy and eat whatever we wanted.  And looking back, our choices were all wrong.  We still enjoy going out to the pub, but we wait until we get home and then I'll make my version of the food.  So every Friday, I will be publishing my healthy version of casual pub/restaurant food which will be delicious and nutritious.   It's still not as healthy as eating a bowl of leafy greens, but eating this once a week is so much better for you than eating the alternative.  And your kids will love it too!

So what is Tempeh?  Tempeh is a fermented soybean product made with grains:  rice, barley and millet.  And a lot of people are afraid of it, seriously.  They look at the package and they see this pressed, moldy looking grain product and put it back on the shelf.  I agree, the look of tempeh could use a bit of a makeover, but it's so nutritious and versatile that I use it more than any other protein source in my cooking and it is a protein powerhouse--20g per serving!   You can marinate it, grill it, saute it, use it in tacos, wraps, burgers, meatballs, and chili/soups.  Just make sure that you purchase Organic Tempeh to avoid using GMO soybeans.

I make everything from scratch, but if you're in a hurry, you can purchase the bbq sauce.  However, over the counter bbq sauce contains high fructose corn syrup and is high in sugar.  Also, I make my own vegan ranch dressing, but you can purchase that as well.   I normally don't eat fried food, but my husband is a chipaholic and every once in awhile he craves chips.  So I made sweet potato chips, dusted with Old Bay Seasoning and they were delicious!  Everything in moderation...right?

Sloppy Joes:

1 8oz package Organic 3-Grain Tempeh
1 small onion, finely diced
1 medium red or green bell pepper, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
1 15oz can of tomato sauce
1 cup water
1 cup ketchup (I use organic with only 2g sugar (no high fructose corn syrup)
1 1/2 tbsp vegan Worcestershire sauce
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp blackstrap molasses
1 tsp prepared yellow mustard
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
2 tsp brown sugar or maple syrup
1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
NoteIf you're purchasing your own bbq sauce then use the first six ingredients above and substitute the ketchup with 1 cup of bbq sauce.

  • I did not use any oil in this recipe since I made sweet potato chips.  You can use 2 tsp canola to saute the onions and peppers.  I sprayed the pan lightly with a canola pan spray before sauteing.
  • Heat pan to medium-low and add onions and peppers and cook until soft.
  • Add minced garlic and cook for two minutes longer.
  • Add tomato sauce, water and all the seasonings, bring to a boil and reduce to a low simmer and cook about 20 minutes until somewhat thickened.
  • Grate tempeh on a box grater and add to the sauce and cook for about five minutes, or until right consistency.
  • Check seasoning.
Broccoli Slaw with Ranch Dressing:

2-3 cups peeled and shredded broccoli stalk stems.  (You can also purchase prepared shredded slaw mix)
1 medium carrot, shredded
1/2 cup Follow Your Heart Vegenaise
1/2 cup Follow Your Heart Sour Cream
1 tsp Dijon mustard
2 tsp red wine vinegar
1 tsp vegan Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp minced garlic (or 1/2 tsp garlic powder)
1 tsp minced shallot (or 1/2 tsp onion powder)
3/4 tsp celery seed
1 tbsp minced parsley
Juice from 1/2 lemon
1/2 tsp salt (more or less to taste)
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
Note:  This makes about 1 cup of ranch dressing, any leftover can keep in the refrigerator for 5-7 days.

  • Prepare shredded broccoli and carrots and set aside in a bowl.
  • Whisk all ranch ingredients together in a bowl and pour over broccoli slaw and toss to coat.  
  • Check seasoning and add more salt and pepper if necessary. 
One final comment about the bread.  I like using Alvarado Street Bakery 100% Whole Wheat Sprouted Burger Buns.  They are made with organic sprouted wheat, are high in protein, low in sugar and they have a nutty flavor.  Enjoy!  


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