Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Tempting Tempeh

In the past I've written about the damaging effects of processed soy. Today though instead of completely insulting the plant, I'd like to bring about some redeeming qualities it possesses when prepared properly. When soy beans are fermented something wonderful happens-they become healthy!  The anti-nutritive properties are taken out, and nutritive properties are put in during what is called the lacto-fermentation process.These are whole soybeans, not processed ones, and fermenting makes them very easy to digest.

Lacto-fermentation has been done for centuries. Before refrigeration this was how food was preserved. Well consider this truly an oldie, but a goodie. Side note recently my niece referred to her father, my older brother, as an oldie, but a goodie on his birthday-haha, I chuckled. Sorry about that, had to share. Back to fermented foods, the lacto part comes from lactobacillus, a healthy bacteria. So when we ferment foods we load them with healthy bacteria, which is super great for our guts. In case you didn't catch my September post on gut health, check it out.

You ferment just about any fruit or veggie that you want to and it should turn out ok. Some more well know fermented foods are kefir, yogurt, kimchee, and sauerkraut. You don't have to limit yourself there though. You can ferment carrots, beets, cucumbers, celery, mushrooms or juice and that is actually called kombucha, The sky is the limit.

In the photos is what tempeh looks like in the package, this is my favorite brand, and uncooked. I do love tempeh, please know though that you must cook it or prepare it with something somehow. Otherwise tempeh is very bland.

Here is my favorite way to prepare tempeh :)

Tempeh Stir-fry

Take the tempeh block and slice it into strips
In a large cast iron skillet put the strips with some coconut oil brown on both sides
In the same skillet put some chopped carrots, red onions, green cabbage, & zucchini
Saute in a little coconut oil and coconut aminos
Mix everything up in the skillet
Sprinkle raw sesame seeds on top
Serve with a spinach, arugula, bok choy, and shitaki mushroom salad with ginger dressing

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