Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Tofu and Kale Heaven
I can't believe I pulled together an awesome meal today. I have been dragging so badly...we have had cool, dark, dreary, rainy, wet, sloppy, depressing weather for what seems like weeks around here. I have been so tired...and this afternoon after work I had to write an article that was long and boring and took forever. In the mean time, I was determined I was having this for supper tonight.
This is easily my favorite way to make tofu these days. I have eaten an entire block of it before...and Grace just helped me do it again. I found the recipe in my usual place - "somewhere online." This tofu takes time to prepare, so it's good to plan ahead. I am not good at doing this, so when I make it, I usually eat around 8 p.m. It's SOOOOOOO worth it, though. I also made the garlicky kale with tahini dressing from VWaV. This recipe introduced me to kale, which I now love, and tahini dressing, which makes me moan in ecstasy. I also made a butternut squash that was perfection, but I had already eaten it before this stuff was finished. I was hungry!
Indian Baked Tofu
For this recipe you need to press the tofu. I use one package, or 14 oz. of firm tofu. I press it by slicing it in half width-wise and placing a cloth napkin over it on my cutting board. I then place my hardcover illustrated edition of The DaVinci Code over it (the only purpose this book serves) and let it sit for about a half-hour. This way the tofu will soak up the marinade better. After that I combine the following ingredients in a zip-lock plastic bag:
3 tbsp olive oil (organic extra virgin cold pressed, of course)
1 tbsp lemon juice (or juice of half a lemon)
1 tbsp curry powder
1/2 tsp chili powder
pinch of turmeric
1/2 tsp salt
Cut the tofu into 1 inch cubes, place in bag and toss around really well. Place in refrigerator 30-45 minutes, turning once in the middle. Bake in a baking dish or on a baking sheet for about a half hour, or until it is chewy and tough on the outside. Mix it up every now and then. You can then broil for a few more minutes to get it crispy, if you wish. This is not a really spicy recipe, so feel free to add more curry if you want.
When I first became a vegetarian, I was afraid to try cooking with tofu. I had no idea what to do with it. I didn't learn about pressing it for a while, so sometimes it didn't soak up the flavors well, or else it was rubbery. I remember for a while just frying it in olive oil and putting a mixture of ketchup, mustard, vinegar and brown sugar over it. After many trials and errors, I have learned the secrets of great tofu, although I still have some failures once in a while. There are so many things a person can do with tofu that it's mind-boggling, and so much fun to try.
Oh, yeah - VEGAN MOFO!!