The best recipes taste gourmet and are easy to make.

And this is one of them! Thanks to my Vancouver Mural Festival colleague Angela who hosted a board meeting at her place last year, I got to try In Pursuit of More’s Kale & Tempeh Salad and discovered that tempeh can be so damn good.

There are so many great things about this salad: The heartiness of potatoes and tempeh, the kale, and the healthy fats in tahini and avocado. This would impress folks at any potluck, and it’s not that hard to make either- the mark of a great recipe.

Ingredients

1 bunch kale
1 yam, sliced 1/2″ and cubed
200g tempeh (1 block)
1 tbsp soy sauce (if the tempeh isn’t seasoned)
2 tbsp olive oil, separated
1-2 avocados
1/3 c pumpkin seeds, toasted

Dressing:

1/4 c tahini (I use sesame)
1/2 c olive oil
1/4 c lemon juice (about one lemon)
3 tbsp maple syrup
3 tbsp red wine vinegar
3 tbsp soy sauce
1/4 tsp salt
2 tbsp sesame oil (optional)

Heat the oven 400 F. Layer the yams on a baking tray with parchment paper and drizzle with 1 tbsp olive oil. Toss to coat. Roast until brown, tossing in between, about 20-25 minutes. Meanwhile, heat remaining oil in a pan (medium heat) and cook the tempeh and soy sauce, if using. Cook about 5 minutes, until the tempeh is crispy on the edges- turn the tempeh every minute or so to avoid burning. Set aside. Toast the pumpkin seeds in the same pan until they’re fragrant (or they begin to pop). Blend the dressing ingredients with 1/8 c of water or more, if needed. Set it aside in a jar.

Serve the kale with the potatoes, tempeh, seeds, half of an avocado, and dressing, to taste. Serves 3.

Tips:

  • The original recipe says this serves 2 as a main and 4-6 as a small side, but I stretched it to 3. To double, I just added more kale, yam, and tempeh, and 1.5-2x of each dressing ingredient. I ended up with a whole lot more dressing, but more is better than not enough!
  • The recipe said to peel the yam, but I don’t like to waste if I don’t have to so I left it on and don’t taste a difference.
  • I like Green Cuisine‘s flavoured tempeh, so I used their Indonesian for this. Then I skipped the soy sauce and left it for the dressing. Easy on that sodium!
  • The sesame oil adds that hint of Asian cuisine, so I like to add it.
  • If you’re serving this right away, follow the original recipe directions and massage the kale with the dressing as desired until it is well coated (start with 1/3 cup and go up from there), then top with the rest of the ingredients.
  • I topped my avo with black sesame seeds to make it look more pro.

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