Monday, January 10, 2011

Warm Up

I could not warm up at work today.

Does anyone else ever suffer from the "I work in the Arctic" syndrome?

I sat on my hands. I held them under my armpits. I wrapped my jacket around my shoulders. Yes, my shoulders. I've officially convinced myself that I'm a senior citizen trapped in a 26 year old body.

One of the student workers in my office asked why my lips were blue.

Needless to say I day-dreamed all afternoon about the warm-fest I would create for myself when I arrived home. I'm currently wearing five shirts.

In addition to wearing five shirts, the other cure for the Arctic Syndrome is a warm bowl of soup. Ah, yes. Just what I needed to warm my bones and eliminate that case of the shivers.

Adam created an interesting Peanut Tempeh Soup this evening from Bryant Terry's Vegan Soul Kitchen cookbook. While the recipe was delicious and super-filling, it tasted strikingly similar to the Moosewood's West African-Peanut Stew. This isn't a bad thing of course (we love the Peanut Stew), but I suppose tonight's soup just lacked the innovative and "exciting" piece we always seek in a recipe.

Nonetheless, if you love tempeh and you love peanut butter, you will certainly love this stew. (Bonus: it's chock full o' fiber and protein--the true love-bugs of a vegetarian diet, yes?). We served ours with homemade garlic bread.

Tomorrow, I'll take a stylish sweater to cover myself, and hopefully avoid the whole senior-citizen-in-my-20s situation. It's getting embarrassing.

Tempeh Peanut Stew
(recipe adapted from one in Bryant Terry's Vegan Soul Kitchen)

I absolutely love a warm, hearty, peanut stew. Something about the salty, nutty flavor combined with fresh veggies and spices just makes my tastebuds smile.

  • 1/2 lb. tempeh, sliced
  • dash of olive oil
  • 2 cups unsalted roasted peanuts
  • 4 cups veggie stock, divided
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 4 large carrots, sliced
  • 1/2 cup natural crunchy peanut butter (salted)
  • 1/3 cup tomato paste
  • 2 cups diced tomatoes, drained
  • 2 - 3 cups sliced cabbage (we took the easy way and used pre-sliced cole slaw mix cabbage)
  • dash of lemon juice
  • freshly sliced green onions, chopped peanuts, and parsley (garnish)
1) Heat 1 to 2 TBSP olive oil in a large skillet. Add tempeh slices and cook on one side until golden brown on the bottom. Flip each slice and cook until lightly browned on the other side (about 3 - 4 minutes each side). Remove from pan and chop tempeh into cubes. Set aside.

2) Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a blender, combine the peanuts, 3 cups stock, and a dash of salt and pepper to taste. Pour into a bowl and add 1 cup water; stir. Pour half of sauce into a baking dish that will hold tempeh cubes in a tight single layer. Place tempeh in the baking dish and pour remaining sauce on top. Cover tightly with foil and bake for 40 minutes.

3) While the tempeh is cooking, warm a little oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onion and a dash of salt, reduce heat and cook until onions are lightly browned (about 5- 7 minutes). Add carrots and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Add peanut butter, tomato paste, and 1 cup of veggie stock. Add tomatoes and cook until heated through.

4) When tempeh is done cooking, add to the sauce, raise the heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, until stew has thickened to the desired consistency. Stir in cabbage, season with salt and pepper, and garnish each bowl with parsley, green onions, and chopped peanuts.


  1. That's a bummer, this soup looks so good! What would you add to make it exciting?

  2. I have the same problem :( No matter what I do, I don't feel warm. Professional attire doesn't help either. I've thought about bringing in a space heater but I'm not sure that's a good idea.

  3. I spend half the day shivering-it-out at work. I'm looking into wrist-warmers because honestly, it's become absolutely ridiculous and typing with mittens will never happen. Good luck keeping warm!

  4. look and sound delicious. Got to try to buy some tempeh to cook this :D

  5. Sometimes I literally feel like I'll NEVER be able to get warm again!!! haha but I always do :)

    I've been looking for a new tempeh recipe! I've only had it baked in bbq sauce. This looks tasty!

  6. I hate it when I'm cold...and I've worked in quite a few arctic atmosphere. Layering is key! And a bowl of soup does always help. This looks hearty and nutritious. Thank you for sharing this with me. I hope you had a lovely Monday. I am trying to stay warm in Austin…we finally got a cold snap down here!

  7. haha, this made me laugh because the cold makes me feel like an old lady, too! Something happens and all of a sudden I develop a limp...always the left leg. This stew sounds awesome! I keep meaning to make the Moosewood stew, and think maybe I'll opt for that one first since it has kale in it. :)

  8. We have the exact opposite problem at my work! The thermostat is always around 79, so everyone is super hot. This stew looks delicious and perfect for the cold weather though. Thanks for sharing!

  9. My work is the same way and so, in protest, I took a snuggie to work. And I wear it nearly every day...I'd be embarrassed if I wasn't so cold! (And that soup sounds delicious)

  10. I am freezing cold all the time- my new thing is to drink hot tea or hot water with lemon instead of cold water, it actually warms you up!

  11. It's 16 F here today which is actually a heat wave compared to the -25 F. I always wear Cuddle Duds (the girls equivalent to long underwear I suppose) and they really help. You can even tell they are underneath your clothes. You should give em a try for sure!

  12. I'm the same way... I work as a host in a restaurant and stand at the front door where people are constantly coming in and forgetting to close the door! So cold!

  13. What a delicious-looking blog! Our classroom at school is permanently at ~60 degrees. Summer, fall, winter, spring... no matter the season, everybody is bundled in class with their down jackets on and noses dripping. It's terrible.

  14. Another great dish for when I'm traning for a fight! I love your recipes thanx for all the goodies!

  15. I tagged you with an award!

  16. I tried your Citrus quinoa salad the other night and it was a huge hit! Thanks for the idea, and I look forward to trying more of your recipes!

  17. My boss freezes me every day, then blasts the heat all afternoon. Gotta love her, but not her menopause body

    Tempeh Peanut Stew, looks delicious.

  18. i have never tried tempeh this way before.. it looks just delicious:) thank you for sharing this and have a great day.

  19. When you're that cold, you definitely need to warm up from the inside!! You can also eat something spicy to warm up... I don't usually choose that route though...

  20. This morning, I could not get my feet warm for anything in the world!