Tempeh Challenge: TLT

Well, today I test-drove the Smoky Maple style tempeh that I got this past weekend, and made the first dish in the Tempeh Challenge. With it, I made a TLT – Tempeh Lettuce and Tomato.

I usually turn my nose up at these kinds of things. I am however missing bacon in a big way, and am also trying to find some redeeming qualities of tempeh.

I usually turn my nose up at these kinds of things. I am however missing bacon in a big way, and am also trying to find some redeeming qualities of tempeh.

I’m happy to say, I was really pleasantly surprised! This package of pre-prepared tempeh includes fourteen thinly-sliced, marinated tempeh in a vacuum-sealed package. I simply followed the directions on the back of the package and seared the tempeh in a couple of tablespoons of oil in a cast-iron skillet.

The high heat helped crisp up and caramelize the tempeh. The texture wasn’t exactly like bacon, but the flavor was akin to the very crispy-style bacon, which is my favorite.

Instead of the usual mayonnaise, though, I used home-made guacamole to help bump up the flavor and moisture-factors in this sandwich. It also helps make the sandwich vegan and a little more healthful. Win-Win!

So, below is my recipe for the TLT including the home-made guac. I’m sure many of you already have a recipe you love. Mine is nothing exotic, but I’ve provided it in case you’ve never made your own before. It’s super easy, and ideal if you can make it yourself so you can control the flavors and salt to meet your health and flavor preferences.

TLT Sandwich with Gacamole Spread   

© Miyo Wratten 2013

© Miyo Wratten 2013

For the guacamole:

1 medium ripe avocado, peeled, pitted and cubed
1 medium ripe tomato, seeded and diced
1/2 small red onion, minced
1 to 2 Tbsp fresh cilantro, minced
1 small garlic clove, crushed
1 Tbsp lime juice
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp smoked chipotle pepper flakes (or regular red pepper flakes)
pinch ground black pepper

1) Prepare all of the ingredients and place in a small ceramic bowl and mash and stir using a fork. Set aside – If you have the means, allow the guacamole to sit for about an hour to allow flavors to develop.

For the sandwich:

© Miyo Wratten

© Miyo Wratten

2 slices of bread of your choice, lightly toasted
3 slices from a small tomato
1 leaf of romaine lettuce
4-5 slices of Smoky Maple Bacon Tempeh, prepared according to package directions
2 Tbsp guacamole (recipe above)

1) Toast bread. While toasting bread, prepare the Smoky Maple Bacon tempeh according to package directions. When cooking is complete, place tempeh on paper towels to drain oil.

2) When toasting is finished, assemble sandwich by spreading guacamole on one of the slices of toast. Add tempeh, tomatoes and lettuce.

Dig in! I’m sure you’ll enjoy this sandwich as much as I did.

Hoping my next Tempeh Challenge recipe will make me as happy as this one did.

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