Get #SoyInspired for the holidays with my vegan tempeh sausage stuffed mushrooms, the perfect appetizer for your Thanksgiving spread!
Disclosure: I was asked to participate in the #soyinspired campaign as a member of the Healthy Aperture Blogger Network. I was compensated for my time. Thanks for supporting the brands that make Avocado A Day possible!
Is it just me, or are you guys also having a hard time adjusting to the fact that it's almost the holidays? Seems like just yesterday I was sweating in shorts and a tank top and today I'm bundled up in fleece lined sweatpants. Oh wait, it was just yesterday that I was rocking shorts and a tank top in 90 degree Vietnam and now I've returned to a freeze warning. So you're saying I have to adjust to a 60 degree temperature shift and an 11 hour time change?? Ugh...
Since I've already broken out my fuzzy holiday PJs, I suppose it's appropriate to start planning my Thanksgiving menu. It's only a month away! Since my mom and mother-in-law are in charge of making the classics, I get to have fun picking out new recipes to try.
My favorite thing to plan is our appetizer spread. Call me crazy, but I'll take cheese plates and homemade gravlax over turkey any day! Sometimes I end up eating more appetizers than dinner!
Since there's plenty of indulgence coming, I like to plan appetizers that are nutritious, but still Thanksgiving worthy. When the opportunity came to collaborate with The Soy Foods Council on a holiday friendly recipe, I knew I wanted to whip up something delicious for my appetizer spread!
If you've been following my blog for awhile, then you've probably picked up on my love for tempeh. Tofu is fabulous and miso is my jam, but tempeh definitely holds a special place in my heart.
Tempeh, which originated in Indonesia, is made by fermenting soybeans and pressing them into a cake. The fermentation process produces beneficial probiotics and makes the nutrients in soy more bioavailable. While I don't push people to become vegan or vegetarian (unless it's a step they'd like to take) I do advocate for eating less meat, both for health and environmental reasons. With 16 grams of protein in a 3 ounce serving, tempeh is a fantastic source of plant based protein. Once people get past the whole 'fermented soy bean' thing and taste it, they love it!
From a culinary standpoint, tempeh is great for replicating the taste and texture of meat. Crumble it up, saute in olive oil and throw it into chili, tomato sauce or tacos for a tasty meatless meal. Lately, I've been really into tempeh sausage, which I make by cooking crumbled tempeh with olive oil, garlic, onions and plenty of spices. It soaks up all those yummy flavors and makes a mighty tasty filling for these stuffed mushrooms.
I kept this recipe vegan, but you could also add crumbled feta or goat cheese to the filling for extra yums. And while we're at it, you could also throw in a beaten egg to help the filling stick together a bit better. It didn't fall apart, but if you're going for that picture perfect Thanksgiving layout, it might be helpful.
Vegan Tempeh Sausage Stuffed Mushrooms
Makes about 30
If you have any leftover tempeh sausage, it's great tossed with whole grain pasta, over stone ground grits or mixed into scrambled veggies and eggs.
16 ounces cremini mushrooms, stems removed and chopped
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1/2 sweet onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon fennel seed
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon fresh sage, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 cup sun dried tomato, chopped
8 ounces tempeh, crumbled
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
Pepper jelly, optional, for serving
Heat olive oil in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic and saute until tender, about 5 minutes. Add fennel, basil, oregano, sage, and pepper flakes and saute 1 minute. Add sun dried tomato and chopped mushroom stems. Season with salt and pepper and saute until mushrooms have released and reabsorbed their liquid. Stir in tempeh and soy sauce, scraping up any browned bits at the bottom of the pan. Saute 2-3 minutes, stir in nutritional yeast, and set aside to cool.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Arrange mushroom caps on a large baking sheet. Divide tempeh sausage mixture evenly between mushroom caps. Place in the baking sheet in the oven and cook 30 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool slightly before serving garnished with a dollop of pepper jelly, if desired.
More #soyinspired recipes for the holidays: