The sour and sweet of balsamic vinegar is a great match for nutty tempeh. And since it also pairs well with all manner of green veg, why not toss in some long, thin green beans to contrast those dense little chewy tempeh squares?
That's already a recipe for success, but where this dish really stands out is by throwing in fat, juicy orange segments to cook with the balsamic and a bit of bitter and savory toasted sesame oil. The juice from the orange scents the dish (further helping that tempeh out), but the fruit itself is knee-shakingly lovely—gorgeously flavorful orange wedges you can periodically pick up and eat with your paws for a rare finger-licking veggie experience. So good. (And probably not a first-date meal. You're also gonna want to floss after. Totally worth it.)
Seriously satisfying when served with a mixed-potato and cauliflower (s)mash seasoned with plenty of nutritional yeast.
Balsamic Tempeh, Oranges and Haricots Verts
1 TBSP olive oil
8 oz frozen green beans (preferably thin variety, may be labeled haricots verts)
8 oz tempeh, cut into 1/2-inch dice
1/4 tsp salt
freshly cracked black pepper
1 orange, unpeeled, cut into 8 wedges
2 TBSP balsamic vinegar
1 tsp toasted sesame oil
Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add green beans and cook, stirring frequently, until the frost is knocked off, about three minutes. Add tempeh, salt, and pepper, and let cook two minutes. Toss. Repeat, tossing every two minutes, until tempeh is golden brown and beans are seared in spots, about 12 minutes total. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
Return skillet to heat and add orange wedges and balsamic. Cook, tossing frequently, until orange flesh softens, about five minutes. Add sesame oil and toss to coat.
Return tempeh and beans to skillet. Cook another three minutes or so to let the orange scent the dish and ensure the tempeh and beans are heated through. Serve at once.