Saturday, March 10, 2012

Pepper Steak With Tempeh

I have my favorite vegan cookbooks and I use them all the time. I also have my favorite family recipes that I've been missing from my "now" medically necessitated vegan world. How to combine the two separate ways of eating into one lifestyle has long set my mind a thinkin'. After all, in my 53 years of marriage I gathered a lot of recipes that were worth making again and again. With the kids grown and parents in their own right and my hubby gone off to heaven before me, I yearned for the "comfort" foods of my old days.

I know it sounds silly, but I've been missing Pepper Steak. You can tell by the recipe card sitting in my big blue recipe file box that it has been used over and over because it is stained to the point of being nearly unreadable. In the days when two kids and hubby were around the table with me, I had to double the recipe because we all loved the dish to the point of  being pigs about the whole thing. But that's another story.

This particular recipe is a delicious blend of round steak, vegetables, and spices that cooks into a fragrant, saucy mixture that I always served over mashed potatoes. My taste buds been longing for that old favorite from the time in my life when I was surrounded by a happy and loving family. So I set out to veganize it. Nobody was more surprised than me when it turned out to be nearly as good as the real thing.

For the mashed potatoes, I just did them the old way. Peeled, cut into chunks, and boiled to tender. Then I warmed some rice milk, which I find far more palatable than soy milk, with some vegan margarine and whipped them into fluffy clouds. I added salt and pepper and sprinkled them with paprika just before serving. Doggone good if I do say so myself.

As for the Pepper Steak itself, I changed nothing except for substituting tempeh for the round steak. Who knew the whole concoction would be good enough to deserve its own blog? Happy chomping.


1 package tempeh
2 Tbs. olive oil
1 Tbs. flour

Cut tempeh into bit size pieces, dredge in the flour, then brown in the hot oil in an oven-proof pot with a lid. The tempeh will look and taste more like the real thing if it has a good crust on it. Remove from the heat.

Add to the pot:

1/2 cup catsup
1 cup No Beef broth (use vegetable broth if you can't find the other)
1 large onion, chopped
2 green peppers, sliced into rings
1 cup mushrooms, sliced (I used baby bellas)
3 Tbs. soy sauce
salt and pepper to taste

Mix everything to distribute the seasonings. Cover and cook in the oven at 350 for an hour. Serve over the mashed potatoes. Enjoy.

Vegans never sleep; we are always thinking up
new ways to veganize old favorites

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