Thursday, September 9, 2010

Burgers with Smoky Tempeh Strips

I'm going to start out saying that I'm adjusting our daily food slightly by incorporating what's called the Feingold Diet. It basically removes petroleum-based preservatives, all artificial colorings and flavorings, and some natural flavorings, that are preservatives in disguise, from our food. It's a program I purchased after meeting a couple of women who have children struggling in certain ways that mine do. To protect my children's privacy, I'm not going to go into detail here of what we are working on, but I'm hoping that by removing some of the more harmful ingredients from our diet, it will help my beautiful blessings. The Feingold Diet by itself is not vegan, but I am only purchasing food that is vegan, so our food will actually be even more limited that the average person on this food plan. But, that's okay. What I won't do for my own health, I will cross over oceans and knock down mountains for the health of my children. Today was the first day that I began incorporating some of the food from their huge food list. It's a very slow process and reminds me of when I first became vegetarian and then vegan and how slowly shopping seemed to go in the beginning. I know that as I mark up my food list, shopping will go faster over time. So, over the next few weeks, you'll see things that we are using up that are not on the food plan, while I will be purchasing the new things on the plan. If this works and is helpful, this will be long-term, but the variety of food is great, and I should be still putting out tasty food. Hopefully, you'll stick around to see what I come up with.

Tonight's dish was originally going to be burgers with Smart Bacon, what we call facon in our home. It was going to be a kind of "facon burger," if you will. But, the "facon" isn't on the diet plan, so I came up with Smokey Tempeh Strips. I only told GR that I was subbing tempeh for facon because I knew everyone else would compare the two tastes, and I didn't want that. Everyone seemed to like them, except for SR, who wouldn't try them due to her past distaste of tempeh. Too bad. JK had seconds, and the whole dish was gone by the end of the meal. So, I guess it passed. The burgers we already had on hand and are not on the diet, so it's a half and half meal. Check it out.

Open-faced shot of Burgers with Smokey Tempeh StripsBurgers with Smokey Tempeh Strips


2 Tbs. olive oil
1 - 8 oz. pkg. LightLife Organic Tempeh, Soy style
5 to 7 drops of Liquid Smoke
2 tsp. yellow mustard
2 Tbs. soy sauce
2 Tbs. canola oil
Your favorite veggie burgers (we used the extra large Boca Burgers from Costco)
Your favorite burger condiments
Your favorite burger buns


Slice the tempeh into thin strips width-wise. In a medium skillet, heat the olive oil on medium heat, and add the tempeh. In a small bowl, whisk together the Liquid Smoke, yellow mustard and soy sauce. With a glazing brush, brush some of the sauce over the tempeh strips. Cook for two to three minutes. Take tongs or a small spatula, and gently flip the tempeh strips over. Brush the remaining sauce over the strips. Cook for another two to three minutes. Flip one last time to sear in the top sauce and put in a serving dish. Meanwhile, in a griddle, heat the canola oil over medium heat and cook the burgers on both sides until done. Fix your burgers the way you like them with the tempeh strips on top. They actually came out pretty tasty, and I'll definitely be doing this recipe again. Serve with steamed veggies. Feeds five hungry vegans.


  1. It is amazing to see what us mothers would do for our kids....and most of all because we love them so much. Good luck.

  2. Well now I'm all curious what is up w/The Blessings. Hope the Chocolate Chip Pecan
    Bars aren't a contributing factor.

  3. So many problems are due to what's in our food, blessings to you for making so many healthy choices for your kids!

  4. Thank you, Millie. I'll keep you posted if this is successful.

    S.V., Well good news, I'm pretty sure those bars would be okay on the plan! Desserts are fine, and I've even double-checked on the chocolate chips, so we're good to go.

    Janet, I know you know that all too well. Thanks for the support.

  5. I think it's awesome what you are doing for your kids. There are so many parents out there who don't care! I see a lot of parents here in the south who don't take care of their kids, which is so sad. Your kids are very lucky to have a blessed mama like you! I hope the new diet works out for you.
    BTW, the burgers look very tasty! :o)

  6. Your such a great mama! I think it's wonderful what you are doing for your kids nutrition and health :) The burgers look delicious! I've never tried Tempeh and would like too. Thank you for reminding me about it, since today is my grocery shopping day. hehe :) xoxo

  7. I too worry about colors, preservatives, and "fake" foods (even though I do like Smart Bacon and also call it facon). There's always a tradeoff for convenience. I hope it helps, and either way it seems to be a change in the right direction.

  8. Sounds like an interesting plan; I'm looking forward to seeing the meals that come from it. Those tempeh bacon burgers look delish.

    Have a happy weekend with the blessings!

  9. Oh I am glad you made these instead of Smart Bacon..Im sure these taste a lot better than store bought tempeh bacon. Next time I make bacon, I must try your recipe : ]

  10. Hi, Everyone,

    Michelle and Maggie, since you both said similar things - thank you! I try to be a good mom, and hopefully this food plan will work. :-)

    Jessica, I agree - there are so many questionable ingredients out there. This plan doesn't eliminate all "fake meats," just those that don't fit in the plan. So, it will reduce our intake of them.

    Rose, how's the break been going? Thanks for the encouragement. Hopefully, the meals will still be tempting.

    Jacklyn, glad you like my last-minute tempeh version!

  11. GO FOR IT!!! i knocked out preservatives not to long ago(my ocd is telling me to tell you that sometimes i slip up......:) lol but rarely!:)!) and you are totally right, its just another healthy step, just like vegan and vegetarian. i have read a lot about how colorings and additicves can cause or exacerbate all types of problems. this is why i chose to get off foods that include them. kick out plain white sugar and hfcs too, i know that made a small difference in me. a say small, but every little bit adds up. i know its rough, feeling like "great, MORE limits for my kids and i" but do it, its a great idea.

  12. Thanks, Michelle, for your enthusiastic encouragment. We already eliminate corn syrup. The plan doesn't eliminate all sugars or sweets, just the ones that have these preservatives or colorings and flavorings. I'll keep you posted of what we are eating. :-)

  13. M- I love that you are working in other food for your blessings. It is a challenge to try to incorporate new foods while ridding yourself of old foods too. I did that when I switched over and it felt daunting to say the least, also when I switched over my grocery bill was huge! I will be your biggest supporter! I am ff to research the Feingold diet!

  14. Hi, Brandi! Grocery bills are the worst when you try to get healthier! I don't know why people think eating healthy is cheaper. A box of Kraft Mac and Cheese is cheap, but organic veggies are not. Let me know what you think of the Feingold Diet. :-)