If you’re after a quick-to-prepare, delicious and nutritious vegan meal, do try this marinated tempeh with roasted black grapes and fennel. Stuff it into wraps with some salad or serve it with green vegetables and a baked potato.
In true Fat Tuesday tradition, I cleared the house out of milk, butter, eggs and all things dairy after pancake day. Following on from Veganuary I want to eat even more vegan food than I usually do for Lent.
Sometimes I try and give something up for Lent and sometimes I don’t. This is one of the years I’ve decided to honour tradition. I’m fasting and following the 16:8 diet. This means I’m no longer eating my beloved breakfast and I must say I’m missing it. The plus side is that I’m cooking lots of delicious evening meals, so that we don’t feel we’re missing out. This marinated tempeh with roasted grapes and fennel is one of them.
What is Tempeh?
Tempeh is one of my favourite protein sources. I’m truly shocked to find I don’t have a recipe on for it on Tin and Thyme. It’s a traditional Indonesian food, the origin of which is a little uncertain. Most tempeh is made from soya beans, though fava beans work well too. And, apparently so does wheat. But I have no direct experience of wheat tempeh.
Although it’s sometimes likened to tofu, it’s really quite different. The beans are first cooked then inoculated with a fungus, Rhizopus oligosporus. They’re left to do their thing in a warm place for a day or so. This process binds the beans together. At the same time it breaks them down and makes them much easier to digest.
You end up with a white block that looks similar to a piece of brie. It’s firm and chewy rather than soft and it tastes really good. Unlike tofu, it already has a good flavour, sort of nutty, but almost bacon like when you fry it. I often fry slices of it without any additions at all. But like tofu, it responds well to a marinade.
CT used to make it many years ago and it was the absolute best. Sadly, I’ve been unable to persuade him to restart. I have to confess it is a bit fiddly and time consuming. So these days I buy it. This has been made easier as supermarkets now sell it. Or at least our local one does. It used to be very hard to get hold of indeed and the quality wasn’t always that good. Luckily things have improved a lot.
Is Tempeh Good For You?
The answer is a resounding yes. Tempeh is high in protein, vitamins and minerals. Particularly high, it seems in iron, calcium and riboflavin. Weight by weight, tempeh contains over twice as much protein as tofu. It’s also low in sodium, fat and carbohydrates which makes it an ideal vegetarian or vegan food.
Marinated Tempeh with Roasted Grapes and Fennel
So this marinated tempeh with roasted grapes and fennel was one of the first vegan dishes I made for Lent. Oh my, its good. A lovely combination of chewy tempeh, jammy grapes and fresh sweetly fragranced fennel.
It’s a very simple dish to make. You just need to roast up an onion, a fennel bulb and some black grapes along with some sprigs of thyme or rosemary. Take them out of the oven after fifteen minutes or so and give everything a good stir.
Roast for a further fifteen minutes when the onion, fennel and tempeh should be cooked and brown around the edges and the grapes shrivelled and jammy.
Use the marinaded tempeh to fill wraps along with some salad and maybe vegan mayonnaise or some avocado slices. Alternatively serve it with a jacket potato and some cooked greens. I’d love to hear what you’d like to accompany it with.
How to Marinade Tempeh
One of the really good things about tempeh is that it will soak up a marinade in just a few minutes. This means you don’t have to plan too far ahead. Nor do you have annoying bowls of stuff lying around and taking up space in the kitchen. All you need to do is mix up your marinade ingredients, then cut your tempeh to size, add and stir. Leave for ten to fifteen minutes with an occasional stir and it’s good to go.
Tempeh will take lots of bold flavours, but copes well with more subtle ones too. Tamari or other soya sauces marry particularly well, as does ginger, garlic, chilli and smoked paprika. I’ve gone for quite a simple marinade for this recipe with only three ingredients: tamari soy sauce, vinegar and chilli powder.
For a more complex marinade take a look at my vegan courgette tempeh hash.
Recipes For Other Easy Vegan Meals You Might Like
- Barley bowl with spiced aubergine, chickpeas and tomatoes
- Green split pea curry
- Miso marinated tofu with pasta
- Pulled jackfruit in homemade barbecue sauce
- Ribollita – a hearty Tuscan soup
- Spicy peanut butter noodles with steamed veg and smoked tofu
And if you want more vegan recipe ideas, take a look at my vegan category.
Keep in Touch
Thanks for visiting Tin and Thyme. If you make this marinated tempeh with roasted black grapes and fennel, I’d love to hear about it in the comments below. Do share photos on social media too and use the hashtag #tinandthyme, so I can spot them.
Marinated Tempeh. PIN IT.
Marinated Tempeh with Roasted Grapes and Fennel – The Recipe
Marinated Tempeh with Roasted Grapes and Fennel
- 1 small onion
- 1 large fennel bulb
- 150 g seedless black grapes
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- pinch sea salt
- a few sprigs of thyme or rosemary
- 200 g tempeh
- 1 tbsp tamari or shoyu
- 1 tbsp mild vinegar such as sherry or balsamic
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper use double the quantity if you like a bit more warmth in your food
- Set the oven to 200℃ (400℉, Gas 6).
- Whilst the oven's heating up, prepare the veg. Peel the onion and slice lengthways into eight.
- Wash the fennel, trim the ends then slice into fingers.
- Place the onion, fennel and whole grapes in a roasting tray. Drizzle the olive oil over the top, then sprinkle on the salt. Tuck the herb sprigs in amongst the fennel. Roast for 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile marinade the tempeh.
- Mix the tamari, vinegar and cayenne pepper in a bowl. Cut the tempeh into bite sized chunks, throw in the bowl and stir until all the chunks are covered. They should soak up the marinade in the fifteen minutes. Stir occasionally.
- Take the veg out of the oven, chuck the tempeh in and give everything a good stir. Roast for a further ten minutes.
- Take out of the oven and give everything a good stir. Roast for a further five minutes when the onion, fennel and tempeh should be cooked and brown around the edges and the grapes shrivelled and jammy.
I’m sharing this recipe for marinated tempeh with roasted black grapes and fennel with Lost in Food for #CookBlogShare.