What is tempeh?
Tempeh is a compact white cake made from dehulled boiled soybeans through a fermentation with Rhizopus molds. In 2012 the World Health Organization defined “tempeh” in its Codex Alimentarius. According to this definition tempeh shall consist of the following ingredients: soybeans (any variety) and tempeh starter, a mixture of spores of Rhizopus spp. (R.oligosporus, R.oryzae and/or R.stolonifer) and cooked rice powder, rice bran powder or wheat bran powder. The texture must be compact and not easily disintegrated upon cutting with a knife. The colour must be white as the result of luxurious growth of mycellium of Rhizopus. Tempeh’s flavour must be nutty, meaty and mushroom-like, while the odour must be fresh without ammonia smell. The Codex also specified following analytical requirements: free from foreign matters, max. 65% moisture, min 15% protein, min 7% lipids and max 2.5% crude fibers. No additives are allowed and only processing aids can be used to control acidity during soaking the soybeans. The name tempeh cannot apply to products that have that undergone further processing other than freezing.
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