It’s going to be a scorcher today, Boston! Cooking might be the last thing on your minds on this freakishly warm March day. I appreciate warmth and a mild winter, but mid-to-high 80’s in March is worrisome even to me. More importantly, we have wine traveling from California, and I am crossing my fingers the crazy temps don’t spoil it.
As you know, I celebrated the big 32 on Tuesday, and dinner was so great I thought I would share. Since we were in Sonoma and Napa so recently, I decided I wanted a quiet birthday evening at home. After lots of loving messages from friends and family and gorgeous flowers from my family and my husband and a loooong work day, I kicked off my birthday celebration with a bubble bath and a glass of bubbly.
I was able to relax because I had started dinner the night before. I cubed a giant block of tempeh to start. After this meal, I realize I prefer tempeh to tofu for a vegetarian protein; I like the chewiness, and does it soak up sauce!
Raw tempeh looks a little like brains, unfortunately.
I chose to marinate my tempeh in this Ortega taco sauce. When we were little and my dad would travel for work, we often had tacos for dinner because my dad didn’t like them. This taco sauce brings back fond memories of these dinners. And it’s tasty.
Marinated overnight, the tempeh basically took on the flavor of the taco sauce which made it a fabulous filling for our tacos.
When it was time to start our build-your-own-taco bar, I sautéed the tempeh on low in a frying pan while I prepped our toppings.
They included grated cheddar and chopped romaine,
I also brought out some of my homemade habanero salsa which is to-die-for and makes my forehead sweat, guacamole, 2% Fage yogurt, and of course warmed whole wheat tortillas. We each built out own tacos, starting the tempeh, piling them high with deliciousness.
We ate on the floor with the windows open and bubbly in our glasses and followed our tacos with some desserts that my husband brought from Flour. It was a nice picnic dinner.
Warm weather definitely brings out the desire for quick foods that don’t take a ton of heat to prepare. The tempeh was the only part of these tacos that required turning on a burner, and that was only for about 10 minutes so it didn’t heat the house much. Tonight we’re having giant salads with fried eggs and trying to stay cool with a walk at Castle Island. What a week!
Have you done anything summery this week?