New July, 2014 Follow Up…
This has been a great method, developed by Organic Cultures, for wrapping soy beans inoculated with tempeh spores. The culturing/fermentation times are shorter, which could be in part from the wild yeast spores on the burdock leaf. Burdock wrapping of the tempeh cakes makes it easier and faster to produce vs. filling plastic bags.
The burdock leaf is prefect this time of year for trying this tempeh production method yourself. Hurry though as the burdock will start the flowering and seed production cycles soon, which is still OK for wrapping the soy beans. This method is more like the traditional recipe and replaces plastic bags and the mess of poking all the holes.
Once the cakes are inoculated and growing tempeh spores medium, simply place cakes into a freezer bag and freeze. We find it best to take the finished cakes out right before you plan to use them and allow thawing about half way through. Letting the cake thaw completely seems to make a softer lower grade product.
Let us know in the comments how this method goes for you. Remember to identify correctly the plant used or have someone knowledgeable in herbal medicine assist you.
As with most of North America, we cannot produce tempeh in the traditional manor. Traditional tempeh is a mix of cooked soybeans inoculated with the proper spore starter. The inoculated tempe mixture is wrapped in fresh banana leaves to ferment outside for a day or two.
Here in the USA, it is common use plastic bags with perforated with holes for fermenting the soy cakes; however, this is not following traditional ways or sustainable methods. The following experiment, brought about by looking for an alternative, is as follows: …
Experiment #: Tempe1012AB274 –
Alternative Sources for Tempeh Fermentation
Equipment Used: Dehulled split soybeans, tempeh spores, burdock leaves, common kitchen and lab utensils and glassware.
– Experiment started via the standard tempeh recipe found on our organic-cultures.com website. Once soy beans are cooked and processed, the steps changed from placing tempeh mixture in perforated plastic bags to encasing the spore inoculated soy beans in a sustainable and eco-friendly wrapping.
– Cakes then wrapped in fresh burdock leaf. Found single layer of leaf material breaks and needs more holding strength. Some blanch the burdock leaves; in this case, we did not. Used two to three leaves placed opposed to each other. Proper amount of tempe spore soybean mixture placed within leaf ‘basket’. Secure with toothpicks or bamboo. Amount of mixture can very due to size of leaves, however, for better fermentation times use around
a 1/3 cup or 4 oz/ 113gr per leaf.
– Fermented cakes for 29 hours at 75 degrees F on breathable rack lightly covered with layer of plastic film to keep moisture in. Cakes need air circulation but not enough to dry out. Cover with additional layers of burdock leaves for future testing.
– Extra mixture placed in glass baking tray vs. plastic bags, mixture pressed down to better inoculate soybeans and covered lightly with plastic wrap. Within same time frame as above, soybeans showed complete growth with pure white ‘fuzzy’ growth on top of the soy beans. This method seemed faster for quick use or where a sliced ‘cake’ packaged in plastic bags, is not desired. Allows easier mixing of a sauce or marinade with the fermented tempeh. In our test, we mixed the tempeh with BBQ sauce, pressed into cakes, battered and deep fried. Not the healthiest tempeh recipe it is a great vegan substitution for meat!
With a cultured dipping sauce, it makes a very nice appetizer or snack.