Yesterday I realized I had a package of tempeh sitting in my fridge, so I decided to make some fried tempeh cutlets. I wasn't in the mood for my regular flour/spices coating, and I didn't have any panko or breadcrumbs, so I used cornmeal instead. I make these cutlets when I'm feeling kind of lazy and uninspired because they're quick, easy, and remind me a bit of some of the meals my mother used to make us when we were little. This was a nice, protein-packed main course for dinner (I ate two pieces with a side of wilted greens and some fruit)--with leftovers for me for tonight. These cutlets would also be good on a sandwich/grinder with some vegannaise, lettuce and tomato.
1 package tempeh, any flavor
1 cup cornmeal
Garlic powder, to taste
Salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste
Any other favorite seasonings, to taste
Favorite marinade or 1 cup vinaigrette, 2 tablespoons tamari, 1 tablespoon sesame oil, 1 tablespoon bbq sauce
4 tablespoons Canola oil (or other frying oil)
Cut the tempeh in half to form two squares. Cut each of these squares in half lengthwise so that they are still squares, but now half as thick. Mix together the marinade in one bowl and set aside. In another bowl mix the cornmeal with your choice of spices. If you have time you can marinate the tempeh for up to a half an hour in your desired marinade. If you are pressed for time just dip each piece of tempeh in the marinade to coat on all sides. Heat the canola oil in a frying pan (you'll know it is ready for frying if a small glob of cornmeal starts to sizzle when you drop it in). Dredge the marinated or dipped tempeh in the cornmeal mixture. Once all four pieces are coated in the cornmeal mixture on all sides, place in the frying pan and fry until golden brown (1-2 minutes). Flip and fry the other side. Remove the tempeh cutlets from the oil and drain/blot with a paper towel to remove excess oil. Serve immediately with your favorite condiment or a bit of the leftover marinade.