I’ve never been a fan of tofu, and tempeh has always been a hard sell to me. I’ve tried cooking it in a bunch of ways, and while I’ve never hated it, I’ve never made it in a way that makes me want to make it again. Unlike homemade seitan, which I love, love, love.
Until I tried boiling it. I know. Boiled foods have never been my favorite. I like things crispy, crunchy, and well, flavorful.
Don’t leave me just yet. Yes, I boiled some tempeh. But after boiling, you fry it, and it has the perfect texture. Coat it in buffalo sauce and serve it with homemade blue cheese dressing? It’s like you’re at your favorite wing joint, but still a vegetarian. (Although disclaimer: I never liked buffalo wings. Wing sauce: YES, but the actual wings? Nah.)
Let’s talk about homemade blue cheese dressing. It’s easy to make, and you will have a hard time not eating it all before you even get to the salad. I had some farmer’s market cherry tomatoes leftover from my tomato tart, and I almost didn’t make it to the salad.
Oh, and the onions. Crispy, buttermilk onions, dredged in seasoned flour and fried? Make sure you slice them as thinly as possible with a mandolin if you can, but you don’t have to worry about them clumping together. Well, I didn’t, anyway.
You can add whatever veggies you like to the salad. I didn’t have much because I kind of made this on the fly, but cucumbers, celery, or if you like it extra hot, jalapeños would work well with the creamy blue cheese and buffalo tempeh.
- 1 cup sour cream
- 3 tablespoons mayonnaise
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 4 ounces good quality blue cheese, crumbled
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Salt and lots of fresh ground pepper
- 1 onion, thinly sliced
- 1 cup buttermilk
- ½ cup flour
- Oil for frying
- Pinch of cayenne
- 1 package tempeh, cut into cubes
- Oil for frying
- ½ cup hot sauce
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 heads Romaine lettuce, chopped
- Cherry tomatoes
- Any other veggies you like (cucumbers, celery, carrots, etc.)
- First, make the dressing by whisking all of the ingredients in a large bowl. It will be really thick, so add a tiny bit of water to thin it out if you’d like.
- Next, put the onions in a bowl, and pour the buttermilk over them. Let ‘em sit for a few minutes. Put the flour, cayenne, and a pinch of salt and pepper in another bowl and set aside.
- Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add the tempeh, reduce heat to a medium simmer, and let it cook for 12 minutes. Drain.
- Put the hot sauce and butter in a large bowl and microwave until butter is melted. Stir.
- Heat a deep skillet over medium high heat. Add some olive oil and cook the tempeh until browned on all sides. Cook in batches as necessary, and transfer the browned tempeh to the hot sauce. Coat it well and set aside.
- Add more oil to the pan and let it get good and hot. Dredge your buttermilk soaked onions in the flour and fry until crispy and browned.
- To make the salad, combine your lettuce with veggies, top with onions, tempeh, and dressing.