Apple Fennel Tempeh and Cherry Quinoa Salad

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So, my exams are done! And so I return to the kitchen.

This meal was awesome because the tempeh has NO sweetness to it, but the cherries in the quinoa salad add that bit of sweetness. I really loved the flavours of the fennel and apple with the cherries and cilantro. If you’re craving a sweeter entree, this may not be your thing. But the tempeh fillets are satisfying and the quinoa salad is joyous!

I bought a package of plain tempeh and marinated it overnight with apple and fennel and just plopped it on a plate with some quinoa salad. The only reason I have cherries in DECEMBER (how does time pass so fast?), is because President’s Choice sells bags of frozen sweet cherries! I love them in smoothies, but they lend themselves well to de-thawing and being chopped into a salad.

I find the ingredients to be reminiscent of spring time (or even fall), but it turned out to be an awesome winter meal which I paired with a tall mug of tea.

APPLE FENNEL TEMPEH: (serves 2)

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup apple cider
  • 1 small Fuji apple, cored and cut into matchsticks
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
  • 1/2 small fennel bulb, cut into matchsticks
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fennel fronds
  • 1 tablespoon fresh dill
  • 1 medium garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tablespoon grapeseed oil
  • 1 300g package of plain tempeh, cut into 8 (or 16) 1/4 inch pieces

Method:

Combine the everything except the grapeseed oil and tempeh pieces in a large bowl. Pour a quarter of the marinade into a shallow dish, place the tempeh pieces on top and cover with the remaining marinade. Cover and refrigerate for minimum 4 hours (overnight is best!).

When you’re ready to serve, heat the grapeseed oil in a large skillet and cook the tempeh pieces until they’re golden and crispy on the edges (2-4 minutes on each side).

CHERRY QUINOA SALAD: (Serves 2)

  • 1/2 cup quinoa, uncooked
  • 2 tablespoons raw almonds, chopped
  • 1/3 cup cherries, quartered
  • 1/4 cup red onion, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon jalapeno, minced
  • juice of 1/2 lime
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • pinch of paprika

Method:

In a medium sauce pan, bring 1 cup of water to a boil and add the quinoa. Lower the heat to a simmer and let cook until all the water is absorbed (about 15-20 minutes). Place cooked quinoa in a large bowl and let cool in the refrigerator.

Once the quinoa is cooled, add the remaining ingredients and combine.

 

To serve, place half the quinoa salad and half the tempeh pieces on each plate. Include some apple and fennel bits with the tempeh. Serve with an extra slice of lime and a small grind of salt over everything.

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