After my last attempt at baked BBQ tempeh, I really, really needed this to work. If it didn’t, chances are I would have given up. (Not very good at repeated failure.) Fatalism not necessary, kids. This worked superly and duperly.

I’m just not into marinating, even for an hour. When I decide to eat, I want to eat. I figured with my tempeh tacos, I just add a bunch of water with the spices and it does double duty, marinating while cooking—so why wouldn’t it work with baking?

I sliced up my tempeh into 16 triangles, coated them generously with barbecue sauce, then poured a good ¼ cup or so of water over it all, not covering the tempeh but definitely thinning out the sauce. I wouldn’t worry about overdoing it with the water. The flavor’s not going anywhere but into the tempeh; the water will evaporate sooner or later.

After about 15 minutes in a 450° oven, the water had fluffed up the tempeh a little bit and had otherwise vacated the premises. So I sprayed it all with oil, flipped it, then brushed the top with more barbecue sauce. After another 15 minutes I repeated the process—by then it was almost done. I upped the temp to 475° and let it go for another 5 minutes or so.

This whole time I’d had some thinly sliced potatoes frying with red onion, olive oil, cayenne, paprika, and salt (probably my favorite way to eat potatoes).

About halfway through lunch, I noticed a glaring omission of corn on the cob…and summer.

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