Thursday, August 30, 2012

Vegan Week: Spiced Tempeh Cauliflower Pilaf

Have you been inspired yet?  Or are you bored with my Vegan Week posts?  Are you craving a plate of greens, or are you still hungry for a hunk of meat?  Even if you're able to get a few new side dishes in your repertoire, I'm happy.  
I know it can be tough to get in 3 full cups of veggies each day but this pilaf is a good start!  If you're not a fan of cauliflower, I'd encourage you to try this dish because it's practically undetectable once all the other flavors and spices hit your tongue.  The peas provide a little hint of sweetness to complement the cinnamon, while the meatiness of both the tempeh and the cauliflower soak up the savory and salty flavors.  This could easily stand on it's own as a one-dish wonder but you can also pair it as a side to a piece of omega-3 rich salmon.
Spiced Tempeh Cauliflower Pilaf
adapted from: Veggie Num Num
3 T. avocado oil (or any oil you have on hand)
4oz tempeh, crumbled into bite-sized pieces
2 tsp mustard seeds
2 tsp tumeric
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 large onion, diced
2 tsp freshly grated ginger root
2 cups brown rice
2 cups no-chicken chicken broth
2 cups water
1/2 head of cauliflower, cut into small florets
1-2 cups fresh or frozen peas
1/2 cup raw cashews, roughly chopped
1/2 cup cilantro, roughly chopped
  1. Heat 2 tbs of the oil in a large frying pan over a medium-high heat, add the pieces of tempeh and fry for a few minutes until golden on all sides. Remove from the pan and drain on absorbent paper. 
  2. Add the remaining oil to the pan along with the mustard seeds and heat over a medium-low heat until the seeds begin to pop. Quickly add the turmeric, paprika and cinnamon and over a low heat combine the spices with the oil until you have a paste.
  3. Add the onion and increase the heat a little continuing to fry until the onion is soft. Add the ginger and cook for just a minute before adding the rice.
  4. Combine the rice well with the spices and onion, add the cauliflower and cooked tempeh and increase the heat. Add the stock and water and bring to the boil.
  5. Cover and decrease the heat to low, allow the pilaf to cook for about 20 minutes until rice is tender and stock nearly absorbed. Do not remove the lid but turn the heat off and allow the rice to sit 10 minutes. 
  6. Add the peas, stir through quickly and cover and cook for a further few minutes until stock is fully absorbed and rice cooked.
  7. Garnish with cashews and cilantro.  
  8. Serve warm accompanied with naan bread.

Linking up to Keep It Real Thursday at Beyond the Peel.


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