The most important step is to ferment the tempeh in a warm environment.
Tempeh culture needs a special environment to develop properly.
Around 86°F (30°C)
Not too humid or too dry
With oxygen access
The easiest way to create this environment is to use plastic Ziploc bags with holes in them (you can reuse them after a good cleaning). They allow the culture to breathe while keeping the right level of humidity.
These bags filled with cooked and seeded (or inoculated) peas are then placed in a turned-off oven, with only the lights on and the door ajar. This is the simplest DIY method to reach 30°C easily.
Ideally, you should have a cooking thermometer to calculate the temperature of the tempeh and adjust the incubation environment if necessary.
Split Pea Tempeh Recipe (Soy-Free)
Learn how to make soy-free tempeh from yellow peas, also called split peas! For ease of preparation, buy shelled split peas.
Boil uncovered for 15 minutes, or until peas are al dente and still crisp.
Remove foam with a spoon.
Drain the peas well in the strainer and discard the water.
Spread the peas on the clean dishcloth and allow them to cool. Use the dishcloth to absorb some of the moisture.
When the peas are no longer moist to the touch, transfer them to the large saucepan.
Add the vinegar and mix well.
Add the culture and mix well.
Bagging and Incubation
Fill the plastic bags with the peas. Do not exceed 3cm in thickness.
Use a fork to poke holes in the bags.
Place the bags directly on the oven rack, or a baking sheet. Leave the oven off but turn on the light and leave the door ajar.
After 1 hour, test the temperature of the tempeh by placing the thermometer in contact with the bag. The target temperature is about 30°C. If necessary, open, or close the door to adjust the temperature.
After 12 hours, turn the bags over.
Between 24 and 36 hours, the first white spots will appear.
The tempeh is ready when all the peas are covered with a white string and sticking together. Fermentation of the tempeh can take 36 to 48 hours, depending on the incubation conditions.
Refrigerate or freeze to stop fermentation.
Tempeh can be stored for one week in the fridge and at least 6 months in the freezer. Always cook tempeh before eating it.
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That’s it! You have homemade, local pea tempeh! Use yellow pea tempeh in any recipe that calls for soybean tempeh.
We love yellow pea tempeh in burgers, wraps, curries, or just fried in oil.