Thanks for bearing with us last week with any software issues you may have experienced. We're back to operating smoothly & you should be receiving order confirmations to your email after orders are placed!
We're gearing up for quite a few changes! Starting in the NEW YEAR, we will be delivering on Thursdays ONLY to all customers. Order deadline is getting bumped to Mondays at 4 PM. This change will go into effect for delivery January 5th!
Al & the VRFH Team
Soy-free Tempeh from
About the Owner
From a young age, I have been driven by the question of how can I best help others. How can I make the greatest, most meaningful impact? At age 27 and after many years of searching, I’ve discovered the answer: food.
I believe that a diet based in local, fresh produce can drastically change the life of others. I know this because I have experienced it first-hand.
After beginning to consume more fresh, local plant foods, my body quickly craved more. Before I knew it, I had subconsciously transitioned to eating an almost exclusive seasonal vegetarian diet. As my diet changed, I noticed changes in my body. I felt stronger and more flexible. My sleep deepened, and I was able to arise earlier in the morning feeling light. With practice and determination, bouts of mental fatigue seemed to disappear. I was amazed by the changes I was witnessing as well as curious. I wanted to learn as much as I could about the connection between the food we eat, our health, and the health of the environment around us.
There were some bumps in the road on my journey to vegetarianism. I did at first find it difficult to obtain all of my the vital nutrients, proteins in particular, I needed for my physically active lifestyle. Enter tempeh. Fresh, natural, organic, unpasteurized soy-free tempeh, gave me the convenient and ample source of protein I needed.
It quickly became evident that through the provision of this fresh, natural, convenient food I could engage in work that was in line with providing the assistance helpful towards allowing other people to experience the same benefits from natural, plant-based eating that I have grown to know and love.
Several months later, Project Umami is making the dream a reality bringing quality plant-based protein to people who want a healthy diet that mirrors their principles.
Tempeh is an indigenous food from Indonesia, where it has been consumed as a staple for more than 300 years. It is a significant source of protein, vitamin B12, and other healthy bioactive compounds. Tempeh is made by fermenting various nuts, grains and beans with the Rhizopus species of filamentous fungus.
Fermentation Studies have shown that fermentation is the key makes the food we eat super nutritious. Specifically, tempeh fermentation decreases anti-nutrient and allergen contents, whereas it increases essential micronutrient content, for example vitamin B12 and health-promoting compounds.
Sensory Characteristics The color of tempeh should be white, due to growth of Rhizopus, and limited black spots indicating the completely natural spore-phase of its life-cycle. The spores are completely safe to consume and lend tempeh an increased depth of flavor similar to aged camembert cheese. The flavor of tempeh should be meaty, mushroom-like, and nutty; never bitter. The odor of tempeh should be fresh, without a hint of ammonia. These are the qualities of fresh, high-quality tempeh.
Origin The earliest reference of tempeh was found in the Serat Centhini, a 17th century compilation of Indonesian legends, traditions, and teachings published in 1815 under the supervision of King Pukubuwono V of Surakarta Kingdom, Central Java, Indonesia.
Production The production of tempeh involves soaking the raw beans, cooking the beans along with any grains or seeds to be added, cooling the beans, grains and/or seeds, inoculating them with the Rhizopus culture, and then incubating the ingredients under specific environmental conditions (e.g. temperature, moisture, pH, oxygen and time) to facilitate the growth of Rhizopus. This growth increases the health-promoting potential of the beans, grains and seeds used to make tempeh by enhancing nutrient bioavailability and eliminating anti-nutrients by breaking down protein into amino acids, digesting lipids into fatty acids, transforming iron(II)-species into iron(III)-species, breaking down isoflavone glycosides into aglycones, reducing phytate content, as well as producing vitamin B12 through symbiosis.
Effects of Tempeh Fermentation on Nutritional Content of Ingredients Tempeh fermentation is found to drastically increase the amount of soluble protein in tempeh made from chickpeas by 62.7%. In chickpeas, tempeh fermentation is also found to increase antioxidant activity and fiber content as well as decrease anti-nutrient (oligosaccharide) levels. In white and colored quinoa, tempeh fermentation increased the levels of protein by 15-20%, fiber by 48%,and free amino acids 5.5-9 %. A decrease in crude lipids is observed in chickpeas to be 38.9%, in peas 37.5,% and in black beans 12.5-25%. Tempeh fermentation also increases chickpeas’ total phenolic content 2.78 fold and antioxidant capacity 1.80- to 1.94-fold.
Health Benefits. The literature body on tempeh consists of evidence on the potential health benefits of tempeh on gut health, cancer, cognitive function, lung health, cardiovascular health, anemia, liver health, bone health, type 2 diabetes mellitus, obesity, skeletal muscle recovery, and malnutrition. Most of these health benefits in tempeh are linked to the isoflavone, protein, mineral, as well as para- and probiotic contents in tempeh.
Information from projectumami.net
Colorado Pinto Bean & Millet
Black Bean & Sunflower Seed
Black Cat Farm Chickpea & White Mountain Farm Quinoa
Al Stone: Markets Manager and Mycelium Architect
Ryan Davis: Ops Manager & Pallet Jack Cowboy
Nick Chambers: GM & Chief Fungi
JD Kettle: Red Hot Chili Pepp'r
Ally Jean aka AJ: Director of Business Development & Grub Guardian
Joshua Wagner: Wagz
Angelica Quintana: Kitchen Angel
Alex Disbrow: Tater
Prester Kochlee: Ocotillo
Allergen Notification: We handle and co-mingle on pallets boxes of tree nuts, eggs, and wheat.