I think I’ve been holding out on you. I don’t think I’ve shared ONE recipe yet from Vegan Richa, the most amazing Indian cookbook we’ve ever laid eyes on. She has a blog too, but we are just absolutely in love with her hard-copy, straightforward book of recipes. Ohmaigosh. It’s the absolute best. This Tempeh Tikka Masala is one of many we have made and I don’t know why it’s taken me so long to share with you! First of all, this recipe went over waaaaaaay better than the first time we attempted tempeh, and was a great substitute for chicken tikka masala, in my humble opinion. Will may disagree, but I found this wholly satisfying and a perfect go-to when I get a tikka masala craving. He can still eat his meat version of this dish and so can you! However, the spice combos that Richa creates are so authentic-tasting that you’ll want to swamp them out for any other tikka masala recipe. That can actually be said for all her recipes – we have yet to have a bust! So if you love Indian food, tikka masala or are curious about tempeh, this is the recipe for you!
Cooking Notes: This called for fenugreek leaves, but we just used ground fenugreek. We also omitted the asafetida and the raw sugar (we used a regular Greek yogurt which can be a little sweet tasting).
Tempeh Tikka Masala (adapted from Vegan Richa; serves 4)
8 oz. tempeh, cut into 1/2″ slices, steamed with spices*
3 tsp neutral oil (safflower recommended)
1 medium red onion, diced
1 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp paprika
1 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp ground fenugreek
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
4 medium tomatoes, chopped
1″ knob of ginger, chopped
6 cloves garlic
1 hot green chile, chopped (seeds removed)
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/4 cup whole milk
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp chopped cilantro, for garnish
1 cup jasmine rice, cooked
Add the steamed tempeh and 1 tsp oil to a small skillet over medium heat. Cook until some edges are golden, about 3 minutes, then set aside.
Heat the remaining 2 tsp of oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until golden, stirring occasionally, about 7 minutes. Add the garam masala, paprika, ground coriander, fenugreek and turmeric, mixing well. Cook for 2 minutes to infuse flavors with the oil.
While the onion cooks, combine the tomatoes, ginger, garlic and chile in a food processor, then blend into a smooth puree. Add the puree to the skillet after the spices, then cook over medium heat until the mixture thickens and leaves oil on the sides, 17-20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the tempeh, salt, yogurt and water, mixing well. Stir in the vinegar, cover and bring to a boil for 8-10 minutes. Taste and adjust the salt/spices, as needed. Reduce the heat to low and cook until the sauce reaches the desired consistency, 10-15 minutes. REmove from heat, serve over jasmine rice, garnished with cilantro, and enjoy!
*1 cup water, 1/4 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp garam masala, 1/4 tsp garlic powder, 1/4 tsp ginger powder, 1/4 tsp smoked paprika – Combine all ingredients in a dish. Add the cubed tempeh and let marinate for 2-3 hours before using. Once done marinating, place everything in a medium skillet, including the cubed tempeh. Cook over medium heat for 11-12 minutes or until most of the water is absorbed. Remove from heat and drain. It is now ready for use in the tikka masala.