Haole Koa Seed Tempeh

Tempeh with mature green seeds of koa haole (Leucaena leucocephala)
Tempeh with mature green seeds of koa haole (Leucaena leucocephala)

Haole koa (Leucaena leucocephala) tempeh, it’s what’s for dinner. Baby Zeb has even gotten into eating this wild food creation. My haole koa, Job’s Tear grain, organic soybean tempeh has an aroma of baked bread. Yes, this is one of the most invasive plants on our islands. I know you know it! Check Starr Environmental to see photos and help with identification.

To make this I harvested mature pods hanging from the tree, the seeds were all bright green. I soaked 1/2 cup of haole koa seeds in water overnight (throw away the pods that hold several seeds), then dump out the water. I also soaked 1 cup of organic soybeans and 1/2 cup of Job’s Tears. The haole koa seeds were rapidly boiled twice, for ~20 minutes each time, with water dumped out. Job’s Tears and Organic Soybeans cooked with a cover on top. Then I added vinegar and Rhizopus spp. mold and incubated them around 90 degrees until a uniform white mold grew throughout. This was sliced and sautéed in organic toasted sesame oil and dipped in shoyu….et voila! le dîner est servi.

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