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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Making of a Tempeh Ruben Sandwich

There are great vegetarian sandwich's and then there is the Tempeh Ruben, a big open face sandwich that takes a bit of jaw stretching to wrap your mouth around its layers. It is perfect for an at home lunch, as it can get a bit messy and require some finger lickin. I will take you step by step with photos to help guide you through the process. So let's begin with lunch for 2:

2 slices of your favorite whole grain bread, lightly toasted.
6 slices of vegan Almond cheddar cheese

I have used the Berlin Bakery Sourdough Spelt bread for this demonstration because it is my favorite. You can lightly toast the bread and place the cheese on each slice while still warm. This helps the cheese to soften.

Next comes the tempeh. Take an 8 ounce package of tempeh and cut it in half. Remove one half and slice that through the center so you now have 2 squares of tempeh. In a small saucepan bring 1 cup of water to a boil, add a few drops of tamari soy sauce and simmer the 2 tempeh squares f
or about 5 minutes. When done remove and place on the almond cheese while still hot. Now you're melting.

The all important next step is the Russian dressing traditionally used when making a Ruben sandwich. However, for this recipe I prefer to mix a few teaspoons or tablespoons (your choice) with a few teaspoons of spicy salsa and use that for my sauce. Once you have whipped up these two ingredients you can spoon it over the tempeh and then add thick slices of fresh tomato.

Next comes fresh slices of ripe avocado, followed by a mound of raw, live sauerkraut, more dressing if you choose, and then top with a fresh leaf of lettuce. Serve with a knife and fork and a strong napkin. This is a hearty, delicious meal and should be enjoyed slowly and chewed thoroughly. Bon Appetit!

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