Precious tempeh

Discovering the food made with fermented yellow soybeans. A great vegetarian resource

02-09-2014
(foto Emanuele De Marco)

(foto Emanuele De Marco)

After the dish by chef Federica Scolta from Abruzzo, we present the pupils and the recipes of vegan chef Simone Salvini, who, among other things, is at work at Ops!, in Rome. New natural cuisine arms.

My name is Gabriele Pompei, I’m 40 years old and I’m from Rome. I’ve been a chef for 20 years. I attended catering school in Rome, fulfilling my great passion for food and good cuisine straight away. After a first period when I worked in hotels and traditional local restaurants, in 1997/98 I came to meet macrobiotic and vegetarian cuisine, a world that up to that moment had been almost unknown.

One year later, together with other researchers of what’s healthy, I opened the first macrobiotic restaurant that also sold organic products, called Un Punto Macrobiotico, in Rome. After six intense years, both from a professional and personal point of view, in 2005 I opened Zenzero BioRestaurant with other brave partners, a mainly vegetarian restaurant serving fish and certified gluten free cuisine. In March, this year, Zenzero BioRestaurant doubled. I also work at Ops!, in via Bergamo 65 in Rome. In Salvini’s lessons I found new inspiration, great experience and humanity. And a deeper knowledge of vegan cuisine, in particular of vegetal proteins.

Gabriele Pompei (foto Emanuele De Marco)

Gabriele Pompei (foto Emanuele De Marco)

Just to give an example, the tempeh we use is a food made with fermented yellow soybeans. It is very versatile in the kitchen, so much so that many people call it “soy meat", also because of its intense and unique flavour. Tempeh is a marvellous gift given by Oriental cuisine and culture, which I love to prepare in various ways: steamed, fried or simply stewed with vegetables. Was one to analyse its organic characteristics, we could say it is a treasure trove of fibres, minerals and carbohydrates that make this the ideal food for a balanced vegan diet.