A long time ago I read a recipe for tempeh sausage crumbles in 'Vegan with a Vengeance', and today while making our beloved vegan pizzas, I remembered that I have a package of tempeh in the bottom of the fridge. I decided to improvise a sausage for the pizza, having completely forgotten that I had read a recipe for it somewhere else. I thought that I'd just thought of it myself. Here's what I did:
half a package of tempeh, crumbled up
crushed red pepper flakes
While the olive oil heated, I crushed the fennel and other spices in a mortar and pestle, then I threw the tempeh into the skillet with the spices and cooked on low for a time. It didn't seem to be the right texture and wasn't really browning, so I put a bit of water in the pan and it quickly evaporated. I added a tad bit more olive oil to it to make it have a rich taste. I then used this with my usual mix of courgettes, bell pepper, onion, olives, etc, on our vegan pizza.
Well, that was on delicious pizza. And guess what I found online when I opened this up to post about it! Isa's original recipe, which isn't at all far off what I did anyway! Look:
8 oz package tempeh
1 tablespoon fennel seed
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried margoram or oregano
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon dried sage
2 teaspoons garlic, minced
2 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
1 tablespoon olive oil
juice of 1/2 a lemon
In a saute pan, crumble the tempeh and add enough water to almost cover it. Over high heat, steam the tempeh until most of the water is absorbed, about 15 minutes. Drain the remaining water and add the rest of the ingredients and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, about 10 minutes.
It's amazing how similar my version is to Isa's. Either I have an eerily accurate subconscious recall for recipes, or this is how nature intended you to get tempeh to taste like Italian sausage.
Give it a go. It's a winner!