We can read minds and know what you’re thinking: Open-faced Sloppy Joes couldn’t possibly be served as finger food now, could they? Especially not with company around. Our testers were skeptical at first too, but let us reassure you that they all enjoyed a mess-less meal, leaving us to ponder whether we should rename these Not-So-Sloppy Joes . . .
Ingredients for Sweet-and-Sour Sloppy Joes:
- 1 tablespoon (15 ml) neutral-flavored oil
- 8 ounces (227 g) tempeh, steamed and crumbled
- 1⁄4 cup plus 2 tablespoons (56 g) minced green bell pepper
- 1⁄4 cup (40 g) minced red onion
- 2 tablespoons (31 g) minced pineapple, plus extra for garnish
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 11⁄2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme plus extra for garnish
- 1⁄2 cup (132 g) organic ketchup
- 2 tablespoons (28 g) packed light brown sugar
- 1 to 2 tablespoons (15 to 30 ml) red wine vinegar, to taste
- 2 tablespoons (30 ml) tamari
- 1 teaspoon vegan Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1⁄2 teaspoon liquid smoke (optional)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 4 vegan English muffins, split and toasted
- Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the tempeh and cook until lightly browned, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Add the bell pepper, onion, pineapple, cumin, garlic, and thyme. Cook and stir for 1 minute longer.
- Add the ketchup, brown sugar, vinegar, tamari, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, and liquid smoke. Reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. The sauce will thicken. Taste and adjust the seasonings. Salt and pepper to taste.
- Spoon 1⁄4 cup (65 g) onto each English muffin half and garnish with a few pieces of pineapple and a sprinkle of thyme. Serve immediately.
SERVING SUGGESTIONS & VARIATIONS
- Make these with black-eyed peas instead! Replace the tempeh with 1 can (15 ounces, or 425 g) black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed. Heat 2 teaspoons of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the bell pepper, onion, pineapple, cumin, garlic, and thyme. Cook for 1 minute.
- Add the beans, ketchup, brown sugar, vinegar, tamari, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, and liquid smoke. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Partially crush the beans with a potato masher as you cook them: You don’t want them to turn into a paste, but crushing them will allow the sauce to thicken, and also make it easier to eat because whole beans might roll off the bread.
- Taste and adjust the seasonings. Spoon 1⁄4 cup (75 g) onto each English muffin half and garnish with a few pieces of pineapple and a sprinkle of thyme.