Honey and Herbs de Provence Tempeh

By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by National Honey Board and am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I received a gift card to offset the expense of my ingredients.

Let’s take a moment to talk about honey.  Honey is kind of awesome.  It’s a natural sweetener that you can very often use in place of sugar, and you can get a whole variety of flavors of honey, depending on what kinds of plants the bees use to make it.  Did you know that honey is the only food that doesn’t go bad?  Sometimes it gets hard and crystallizes, but all you have to do is put your jar or bottle of honey in a bowl of warm water and it will loosen right back up!

Personally, I’m a big fan of raw honey because it retains all of its enzymatic activity, along with plenty of antioxidants.  Regular honey is pasteurized to prolong shelf life, but the truth is, raw honey has such a low water content that it rarely goes bad or cultivates unhealthy bacteria or molds.  You can find raw honey at your local farmer’s markets, or even at your local supermarket.

But enough about honey, let’s talk about this recipe!  I was first introduced to the honey and Herbs de Provence combination by a boy.  He made baked brie and smothered it in honey and this herb mixture, served it with some toasted baguette rounds, and oh my god, it was the best thing I have ever tasted.

Since then, I’ve been obsessed with the combination of sweet honey and savory Herbs de Provence.  I’ve been wanting to put it on everything I make.  I think the flavor combination is subtle, elegant, unexpected, and absolutely perfect for entertaining (or for just generally showing off your culinary skills).  I once made a spice rub mixture that was similar to this marinade, minus the wine, for some roasted chicken.  I was told it was good, but I did not get to try it myself.

Recently, I’ve been playing around with this recipe.  I tried it with tofu, but it was a little disappointing.  I decided that tempeh works much better because it really soaks up flavors in a way that tofu often does not.  I tried to make this not too sweet, but with an obvious honey note.  The wine very nicely rounds out the herbs, and the lemon zest brightens the whole dish.  You could also easily take this marinade and pour it over some chicken and bake it until everything is golden brown.  However you decide to use the marinade, it will be perfect for an elegant main dish at any holiday or celebration meal.  Pair it with green beans and a simple rice pilaf, a glass of your favorite white wine, and suddenly you’ve got yourself a lovely meal.

Honey and Herbs de Provence Tempeh

Serves 4

Ingredients:
2 packages of tempeh
1.5 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons Herbs de Provence
1 cup dry white wine (I used chardonnay)
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
Zest of 1 lemon
Salt and pepper to taste
Half a lemon, to finish

Directions:
1. Steam the tempeh for 10 minutes in a steam basket over about an inch of water.

2. While the tempeh is steaming, place the honey in a microwave safe bowl or jar.  Microwave the honey for 20 seconds to loosen it.  Add in the rest of the ingredients to the honey and stir, or shake, if you use a jar, until the honey has dissolved.  Taste and adjust the salt and pepper as preferred.

3. Allow the tempeh to cool slightly, then transfer to a ziplock bag.  Pour the marinade over it.  Squeeze out any air and seal the bag.  Marinate like this either on the countertop for at least an hour or two, or overnight in the fridge.  Make sure to turn the bag over occasionally to evenly distribute the marinade.

4. When you’re ready to bake the tempeh, put your oven on broil.  Spread the tempeh out on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.  Broil for 3-4 minutes, then pour a spoonful of the marinade over the tempeh and broil for another 2 minutes.  Flip the tempeh, pour the rest of marinade over evenly the pieces, and broil for a final 2-3 minutes.  Keep a close eye on the tempeh since it could very quickly burn.  When it’s done, the tempeh should be a nice, deep, golden brown.

5. Just before serving, squeeze a little lemon juice over the top of the tempeh.  Serve hot, cold, or room temperature.

Enjoy!

6 Responses to Honey and Herbs de Provence Tempeh

  1. wow this looks and sounds amazing!! i love the idea of honey and herbs. mmm!

    • also i really love the idea of raw honey. my brother is a vegetarian too and he eats it all the time to help with his allergies. but he told me that when he opens a new jar there are still bee parts at the top and that totally grossed me out!

    • Ewwwwww!!!! That would gross me out as well. I’ve never had that experience, but then again I tend to buy my raw honey from stores rather than farmers markets, so it might be less, uh, authentic?

  2. Eileen says:

    Honey plus herbs de Provence sounds like a fabulous idea! I must try this one out. 🙂

  3. Elizabeth says:

    always looking for good tempeh recipes. great idea!

  4. OK, I rarely have used herbs de provence but with the magical combination of honey – I think I’m going to slather that on everything now (starting with that baked brie & baguette concoction!)

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