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Welcome to Claire's: 35 Years of Recipes and Reflections from the Landmark Vegetarian Restaurant

Welcome to Claire's

By Claire Criscuolo

Published 2014

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We all have a food that we enjoy and that we know is really good for us, yet we rarely eat it. For me, this food is tempeh. Tempeh is a fermented soybean “cake” that is made by cooking and dehulling soybeans and then inoculating them (either alone or with other grains) with a culturing agent that causes the mixture to ferment and become firm. Later, the tempeh is cut into blocks and packaged for sale. You can buy tempeh in packages, ready to cook into a variety of dishes. It has a nice nutty flavor and it pairs well with strong flavors. I love it baked with a smokey barbecue sauce or crumbled and added to a tomato sauce for a healthful and delicious version of Bolognese sauce. It’s loaded with protein—19 grams per serving—and one serving contains more than half the amount of fiber you need for a day. And it’s rich in isoflavones and the minerals magnesium and riboflavin, which makes tempeh both heart-healthy and a great antioxidant—good food for your entire body.