Big Finger Tempeh Salad
by Nasim Lahbichi
Serves: 3 to 4
Time: 35 minutes plus marinate time (8 hours)
For the salad:
- 8-ounces of tempeh, steamed and quartered
- 1/2 baguette, stale preferably and torn to pieces
- 1/4 to 1/3 cup olive oil, for frying/searing
- (2) Cara Cara oranges, peeled, sliced, and halved
- 1/4 cup pistachios
- 1/4 cup pomegranate seeds
- 1/4 cup parsley, roughly chopped
- Salt/pepper, to taste
For the orange tahini dressing/marinade:
- 1/3 cup tahini
- 1/3 cup of orange juice, about 2 juicing oranges
- 1/2 tablespoon orange zest, about 1 small orange
- 1 teaspoon ras-el-hanout
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 1/2 inch minced ginger
- Salt/pepper, to taste
- Steam your tempeh for about 5 minutes. Steaming tempeh helps remove some of the bitterness that packaged tempeh tends to have. Cut the tempeh into pieces and then halve them. I prefer to cut mine into triangles.
- To make the marinade, combine the tahini, orange juice, orange zest, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, minced garlic/ginger, ras-el-hanout, and about 1/2 teaspoon of salt (to start). Whisk until combined. Taste and adjust seasoning per your taste (more salt; more acidity if needed; more maple syrup if the marinade is too sour, etc)
- Coat the tempeh in the marinade and refrigerate for a minimum of 8 hours (preferably overnight)
- Tear apart your baguette into pieces. Coat with a drizzle of olive oil and season with salt/pepper. To a cast iron skillet, heat with 2 to 3 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add your baguette pieces to the pan and brown them on all sides, about 4 to 5 minutes.
- In the same skillet, coat the bottom of the pan with olive oil and heat over medium heat. Remove the tempeh from the marinade (it may have solidified a bit, this is normal) and reserve the remainder of the marinade. I like to slightly remove some of the marinade that may stick to the tempeh. Sear on both sides until golden.
- Add about 1 to 2 tablespoons of water to the remaining marinade and whisk until smooth. In a bowl, toss the bread, tempeh, and parsley with about 1/4 cup of the remaining marinade.
- To arrange the salad, smear some of the marinade on the bottom of a serving dish. Layer the tempeh and bread mixture. Add sliced oranges. Garnish with pistachios, pomegranate seeds, and parsley. Add flaky sea salt, to taste.
- Dive in!
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