Identity Crisis

Our weather is having a identity crisis.

Late last week? 10-15 degree days and nights. Unseasonably cool.

This past weekend? 40’s and raining. Unseasonably warm.

Today? The identity crisis has spread to the precipitation, dropping upon us a random mish-mash of rain, then snow, and then a combination of the two.

Why, of course I love you, sleet and freezing rain – the ditch is such a fun place to be, don’t you know?!

Luckily, I survived another treacherous journey home, even if I did have a car wanting to drive up my bum behind me. There were a few choice words muttered and maybe a couple of ill wishes wished – but I’d rather keep my relatively innocent appearance and not share them with you here.

The good news is that it’s now all turned to snow (to devishly hide the icey roads underneath) with 6” by morning. And more to come all this week.

Iiiiiiii’m dreaminggggg of a whiiiiite christmassss.

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Anyways. Speaking of identity crisises – one recipe I followed this weekend was one for tempeh bacon. Because I am obviously deprived of any sort of real food, including real bacon, by not eating meat and this is my body’s way of rebelling against my beliefs.

Gosh, this post is brimming with sarcasm. Sorry!

I’m actually a little bit turned off by non-meat foods pretending to be meat…if it’s too close to tasting like meat, that is. I’ve found I don’t mind so much if it’s a seasoning replication, though – hence why I’ve become a little bit infatuated with fennel seed lately, but that’s irrelevant to this tempeh bacon. I’m not even making sense with my reasoning right now, though, so I figure the irrelevance is okay, too.

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I think getting to use liquid smoke was the only reason this recipe fascinated me. I couldn’t quite wrap my head around smoke…being liquid…in a bottle. The marinade was a combination of apple cider, liquid smoke, soy sauce and garlic.

Although… this “bacon” was a bit of a miss for me. Luckily, it’s not making me feel like I’m mowing down on some pork bacon, but I’m not a fan of the seasoning, I guess. Or maybe the texture of the tempeh paired with the seasonings. I have a feeling I’d prefer this recipe used on boiled tempeh rather than raw and then pan-fried.

Gasp – I boil my foods? How on earth do I ever meet my nutritional requirements? It’s a wonder I’m still alive to type this – and a bit full of myself, tonight, too!

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But, I am not complaining. I’m just so glad I have so many meals/pieces of meals prepared for the week – today was ridiculously busy and I have a feeling I’ll be working all week again, so long as I don’t have final exams interfering. Today, I worked through my normal morning snack, had lunch when I usually have my afternoon snack, and worked away the afternoon, too. I do love when the day flies by like that, though. Before I know it, I’m on my way home.

Home to you guys, who I’ve probably shooed away by my fake bacon and sarcasm.

I mean, think about it – even my food (tempeh bacon) is a sarcastic poke and prod at the real deal! (real bacon)

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By the way – see that bread? Another identity crisis. I was supposed to shape this loaf as a baguette but shushed that direction. Instead I left it as an oval. And wound up baking a nice little frisbee:

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If you ask me, it’s karma from being so proud of my bread making “skills” a while ago. Ironically – this is supposed to be the “easy” bread. Just stir and refrigerate! I think I added too much water, though. I quartered the recipe and ran into trouble when I had to quarter 3 3/4 cups of water. Eventually, my reasoning was: “well, that’s almost 4 cups – so I’ll just use almost 1 cup!” Uhh…yeah. I should work on my math if I want to keep playing in the kitchen.

At least it still tastes good. I feel like I say that about ugly quasi-fails too often…but at least it’s true. If it weren’t, I’d be the first to complain about “having to choke down this God-awful bread.”

“Fake” meats – yay or nay? I was a big fan when I first stopped eating meats – the soy chicken (I highly recommend Quorn!) and stuff – but now I just get freaked out if something tastes too much like meat. Although I still enjoy seitan, which is pretty meaty! I guess I just don’t make sense any way you put it. (And I’m not talking veggie burgers – I don’t think they’re even remotely close to tasting like meat…they just happen to be in burger form. I could make a burger out of bananas, and that’s not trying to taste like meat. Anyone wanna have a banana burger challenge with me?)

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17 Comments

Filed under dinner, lunch, tempeh

17 responses to “Identity Crisis

  1. I think that your frisbee-shaped bread looks like a mighty tasty boule. Yum.

  2. Seriously, we are having the freakiest cold weather here. Even Tony is freezing and he is never cold! I think your bread looks good, but I think you and I…we could find a way to eat any brick of bread! I don’t do fake meats, but I can’t have soy, so it is easy to stay away. I do eat eggs though and I know you don’t. I think it is all a balance and I have no bad things to say about fake me. It is yummy! Have a great night Jessica! Oh we are so enjoying the cider spices you sent us! Thanks again!

  3. I’m almost tempted to take you up on that challenge had I not once sprayed cooking spray in a pan and tried to make “banana chips” in a healthier manner than deep frying in coconut oil… Though it never hurts to try something again. Once I get home and after Christmas passes (because I’ll be pretty busy up until then), I’ll accept your challenge. We can make it interesting… fruity burgers – using fruits instead of veggies. Oh this would (will) be one epic post!

    I used to eat Boca burgers and Morningstar soy crumbles / sausage patties and lots of meat analogs just because they were lower in calories and fat, but they don’t really appeal to me anymore and usually just taste like a bunch of salt and seasonings. I haven’t tried tempeh bacon yet (NoMeatAthlete has a recipe for homemade vegan soy-free bacon I’m dying to try!!!) but there’s a bottle of liquid smoke in the cupboard at home so there’s another one to add to my list.

    And you’re still alive to blog after boiling your food because you drink the cooking water, you can’t fool me. 😉

  4. Stefanie

    I am with you on being freaked out by fake meat tasting like real meat. I had vegan tacos from a vegan resturant and they tasted like the non-vegan tacos I used to eat. If tofu is classified as fake meat then I guess I am a fan but I do not eat it often. Seitan is too salty for me so I do not buy it and tempeh just does not appeal to me.

    Even experienced bread bakers have fails. Don’t give up. As long as the end result is edible, it is still a success since you learned something. Stay warm and have a great night. 🙂

  5. I still go for the real deal over her in carnivore land 😉 I’ve never had a ‘faux meat’ product… other than tofu if that counts? I like tofu, but I’ve never made my own. Basically, I’ve lived a sheltered life when it comes to venturing outside the world of meat. Haha!

    I wouldn’t be opposed to trying, I just never buy the stuff. Your tempeh always looks delicious though! Seitan on the other hand, completely freaks me out 😛

  6. You just kept one upping yourself on the sarcasm in this post – I <3'ed it! 🙂 I'm nt a fan of fake meat products… it's just… weird.

  7. ha ha. your funny. okay..well u know me..i gotta have real meat…sometimes i wanta be a vegetarian..but it never works very well. i think your probably going to have a white christmas…lucky!! 🙂

  8. I think the weather is crazy everywhere!!

    About the whole “tasting like meat” thing, it does freak me out a little bit when something tastes too much like meat, but only because it’s just… astounding that it can replicate it so well. I don’t really care whether it does or it doesn’t, since I’m grossed out by the origin of meat more than the taste of it. Or, I should say, poultry. I was never a big fan of red meat in the first place.

    And trying to halve 3 3/4 cups of water? Yeah, that’s why I prefer to just use a scale when, well, scaling down recipes (no pun intended)… and as an added bonus, less dishes to wash!

    ❤ ❤

  9. i really enjoy fake meats! I have to get over the fact that its NOT meat and that it is just soy and stuff.. but I think they do a pretty fair job of trying to make it taste like the real deal! its more exciting!

  10. Hahaha I love your sarcasm! 😀

    So that’s what liquid smoke is! Back in the summer I really wanted to try tempeh bacon, so I looked up a recipe that called for liquid smoke, and I was like “What the HECK is that?”

    If we’re not counting veggie burgers, I’ve never really given fake meat a try. I guess there’s not much point since I still eat the real thing. On a side note: banana burgers sound like an AWESOME idea. Maybe made with some raw oats, dates, and coconut??

  11. It’s cool to see how you did the bacon! I’m a meat-eater, so I usually just go for turkey bacon, but it’s nice to see it done a non-meat way : ) And I know what you mean about the temperature identity-crisis…..it’s the same way in Tucson right now. (literally) freezing one day, then 80 the next! What’s up with that?

  12. Oh weather’s the exact same way!! It hasn’t been so bad lately, but yesterday it was snowing, 5* with 20 mph winds and today it’s calm and sunny. Mother Nature’s bipolar. 😛

  13. Oh wow I’m loving the burgers made out of bananas idea!!
    With fake meats I’m really not too much of a fan as I am in love with lentils, chickpeas and other beans but I do occasionally have it when I feel like I need something more ‘meaty’ to cut into. But I only have the types that taste like chicken because I used to eat chicken/turkey but the ones that taste of red meat I can’t stand the flavour of because I didn’t used to eat red meat because of the taste.
    I still need to try tempeh though because you seriously make it look sooo good! I have just bought some seitan for the first time but I don’t know what to do with it yet..hmmm!

  14. Ashlei

    Usually nay for fake meats, but I do like tempeh because it’s fermented and better for you.

  15. I don’t like fake meats. I just eat the real deal!

  16. jen

    For now, I do like fake meats because I’m too scared to go cold turkey and not have meat at all!

    Jen

  17. We’re having mental weather here too – freezing cold snow, england shuts down. Today? Sun and shine and no ice or snow in sight. The weekend – back into the ‘big freeze’ as the papers call it…england is so pathetic.
    I eat a lot of tempeh and tofu, but not in their fake meat form, just in their ‘hi, we’re tempeh and tofu’ form, if that makes sense!? I don’t like how processed fake meats are here, plus 90% of them add egg white anyway :/

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