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Vegan Cooking Tips with Ann Gentry

Ann GentryAnn Gentry is a chef, restaurateur, food educator and visionary. She opened Real Food Daily in Los Angeles 1993, a totally vegan and organic restaurant that has since spawned another in West Hollywood. Please visit Real Food Daily to find out more about this truly unique restaurant and to learn more about Ann Gentry.


Question:

I see tempeh in my store but I'm not sure what to do with it when I get it home. Can you give me some ideas? Does it need to be cooked? Marinated?

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Answer:

I'll tell you a funny story. When I first heard of tempeh, a high protein patty made from fermented soybeans originating in Indonesia, I ran to the nearest health food store and bought a package. I proceeded to eat it raw walking down Fifth Avenue in New York City on a warm spring afternoon. Like many of us, I thought since it was "good for you", I'd better eat a lot of it and fast. Later, when I started cooking and was educated about the healing properties of food, I learned that soybean products need to be cooked first. This imparts flavor and increases digestibility.

To be properly cooked, tempeh should simmer for at least 10 minutes and up to 30 minutes in a broth or a savory gravy. Then and only then can tempeh be fried, broiled or baked to create an appetizing dish.
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