This Grilled Tempeh Caesar Salad is a gluten-free, vegan version of the classic recipe. It isn’t a real Caesar salad — no eggs or anchovies are used. Silken tofu and capers make a creamy, tangy vinaigrette that you can prepare ahead of time. Tempeh is a fermented soy product that is used in Indonesian cooking. Tempeh always needs to be cooked before using. I like it best broiled. It has a meaty texture that goes well in stir-fries and curries. For this salad, it will replace the chicken breast that is so often used to bulk this dish up into a main course.
Tempeh comes in many grain and seed combos. The one we will be using for our salad is made with flax seeds to get that extra boost of omega-3s. If you have Celiac disease there are certified gluten-free varieties of tempeh. See Ann’s Tips for more information on how to safely handle and eat tempeh.
- Heat up a cast-iron grilling skillet on the broiler.
- Grill or broil the block of tempeh until it is browned all over. When cool enough to handle, cut diagonally into ¼-inch-thick slices. Set aside.
- Wash the lettuce well and tear into bite-sized pieces.
- For dressing, combine all the dressing ingredients except the salt and pepper in a blender. Blend. Taste for seasoning.
- Put the dressing into the bottom of a large salad bowl. Add the tempeh and turn gently to coat. Pile the lettuce on top. Toss when ready to eat.
- 1 8ounce block pasteurized flaxseed tempeh (See Ann’s Tips)
- 1 large head romaine lettuce
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice, or to taste
- 1 tablespoon capers, drained and rinsed
- ⅓ cup silken tofu
- Salt and pepper, to taste
Ann's Tips and Tricks
When purchasing tempeh be sure that is has been pasteurized. Raw tempeh should be cooked for at least 20 minutes in boiling water, then proceed with any recipe. Treat raw tempeh as you would raw meats to prevent cross contamination. Wash cutting boards, knives and hands after handling raw tempeh. Opened tempeh should always smell mushroom-like or yeasty