Tempeh Croquettes and Red Lentil Ragout

Red Lentil Ragout

A creamy rich dish made using red lentils and simmering them until the starch breaks down and they take on a “stew like” consistency.  The key to this dish is to boil them at high heat at first and then turn them down towards the end to finish.

Ingredients:

¼ cup finely diced white onion

¼ cup finely diced celery

¼ cup finely diced carrot

2 tbsp grape seed oil

¼ tsp fine sea salt

1 cup red lentils

2 cups water, divided

1/3rd  cup nutritional yeast

3 tbsp wheat free tamari

1 tbsp chopped fresh thyme leaves

Method:

1.     In a medium size pot, sweat the carrot celery and onion on medium heat in grape seed oil for 10 minutes; you do not want any colour on the vegetables.  Add the lentils and continue to cook, stirring constantly for an additional 2 to 3 minutes or until they become fragrant.

2.     Add 1-1/2 cups water and cook on high heat for 10 to 15 minutes or, until most of the water has been absorbed.  Turn the heat to low and reduce to a simmer.

3.     Add the remaining ½  cup of water and simmer gently for an additional 10 to 15 minutes or until the lentils have broken down and become thick like a stew.

4.     Turn off the heat and stir in nutritional yeast, tamari and thyme.  Serve immediately or, allow to cool and store refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 7 days.

Makes 4 portions

Tempeh Croquettes

These flavorful tempeh cakes are best when seared till golden brown ahead of time and finished in the oven.  I like to make them and serve them with a light quinoa pilaf, sautéed garlic greens and a rich red lentil ragout.

Preheat the oven to 400°Fahrenheit

Makes 6 to 8 Croquettes

Ingredients:

1 blocks steamed tempeh, finely diced (see Tips, below)

¼ cup finely diced celery

¼ cup finely diced red pepper

2 tbsp Dijon mustard

1 tbsp dry dill weed

1 tbsp chili powder

2 tsp sweet paprika

1 tbsp kelp powder (see tips, below)

2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 tbsp fine sea salt

Dry Breading

½ cup brown rice flour

½ cup coarse cornmeal

1 tbsp lemon zest

1 tsp dry dill weed

½ tsp sweet paprika

½ tsp fine sea salt

Wet Breading

½ cup almond milk

¼ cup Dijon mustard

¼ tsp fine sea salt

To Assemble

1.     Dry Breading: Whisk all ingredients together in a mixing bowl until well incorporated, cover and set aside

2.     Wet Breading: Whisk all ingredients together in a mixing bowl until well incorporated, cover and set aside

3.     Tempeh Cake: In a mixing bowl using a rubber spatula, toss tempeh with celery, red pepper, mustard, dill weed, chili powder, paprika, kelp powder, lemon juice and salt until well combined.

4.     Using a ¼ cup measuring cup, portion the tempeh mixture into 6 to 8 equal portions and, using your hands, shape into “hockey puck” shapes.

5.     Dip the croquettes into the mustard and milk dip and then into the cornmeal and brown rice flour mixture.

6.     In a medium sized skillet heat ¼ cup of grapeseed oil over medium heat and sear each croquette until golden brown on each side.

7.     Finish in a 400°Fahrenheit oven for 8 to 10 minutes or until heated through.

Tips

-To steam the tempeh for this recipe, in a pot combine 2 cups filtered water with ½ cup wheat free tamari, 1 sprig of fresh thyme and 2 cloves of lightly crushed garlic.  Bring to a boil and reduce to simmer for 10 to 15 minutes.  Allow to cool in liquid.

-Kelp powder is available in the aisles of most well stocked natural food stores.  You may substitute it in this recipe with an equal amount of dried dulse flakes.


Recipe provided by raw, vegan chef Doug McNish