Tuesday, September 7, 2010

ass kicking tofu, peanut sauce and coleslaw!

Wow, has it been tasty around here. This tofu is a tried and true favorite for carnivores and vegetarians alike. I usually end up eating half of these little batonets before their intended use in stirfries, salads or my favorite--summer rolls. Try 'em even if you don't like tofu. Trust me.

How to resist golden crispness such as this?

The process begins. Start with a pound of firm organic tofu. For extra chewiness, freeze then thaw the tofu. Cover with some paper towel or a clean dish towel.

Gently press the excess water out of the block of tofu by weighing it down with something heavy.

Our star marinade ingredients: rice vinegar, dark soy sauce, hot pepper sesame oil. I've used just the soy sauce with good results so don't stress if you only use that.

Getting all coated up in here! Tofu doesn't need much time to absorb delicious liquid marinades...5-10 minutes will do the trick.

Then you need to get yourself some good tasting yeast, also called nutritional yeast. Note my mom's handwritten label, awww. Nice cheesy flavor. It's great sprinkled on salads and popcorn! It's a main ingredient in aux vivres dragon sauce if you are a fan of that.

Put about this much in a shallow bowl.

Get a tablespoon or 2 sized plops of coconut oil in a large frying pan and heat to medium.

Your tofu will be wet and ready to receive the sprinklings of yeast. Roll it around to get it all coated. Do not read too much into the previous two sentences.

Transfer the yeast covered tofu sticks to the hot, oiled pan like so. Let them brown on each side and when they seem crispy, stiff and golden they're ready.

What are you gonna eat this with? Well, a stick shaped food just begs to be dipped right? Right. Here comes the peanut sauce. I didn't realize how easy and addictive this is, beware.

You will need: 2 plops of peanut butter, 1 plop of hoisin sauce, 2 cloves minced garlic, a wee squirt of hot sauce and water. If you want to get fancy you can infuse the water with kaffir lime leaves, or chilis, or whatever turns you on. Use warm water (or microwave) to melt ingredients together. Add enough water to make a dip-like consistency: not too thick, but thick enough to still stick to whatever you're dipping.

You could serve the tofu with a nice Asian flavored slaw. Have I mentioned how much I love purple cabbage? So beautiful, so healthy, so inexpensive!

This is all you need for a wonderful tasty slaw.

So pretty.

Hello dressing ingredients! Some are missing though. You'll also need sugar and salt. But they don't photograph well, so I forgot about them.

The measurements are a bit iffy (if you don't know me by now...well just google a similar recipe or something). I'd say about 1/2 cup of oil of which the sesame oil makes up 2 tablespoons, a little over a 1/4 cup of rice vinegar (you can use lemon or lime juice too, or a combination thereof), a scant 1/4 cup of sugar and about 2 teaspoons of salt. Play around with the flavors until it is sweet yet tangy.

Bon appétit!

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