Thursday, May 11, 2006

tofu crusades

I was reading the veganlunchbox blog pretty religiously earlier this year and I got inspired by a discussion on tofu. The commenters were rating the importance of cooking (or blanching) tofu before consumption. They were worried about salmonella or other microbial ways to get sick. I don’t have any opinions on raw v. cooked tofu, but boy did I suddenly have a craving for tofu.

I walked over to the nearest Whole Foods and picked up a tub of tofu to have for dinner that night. Since then I have been eating the following tofu salad I created on and off for lunch. It’s caused a bit of dissention in the c+potion household. Some believe that there should be a crusade against bringing tofu into the home. Others, more enlightened, think that the anti-tofu crusade is full of shit. (But how cute is that lead crusader?) I just know that if he tried it, he’d love it. I’ve proved it with the couscous and can do so with polenta and now the tofu. Just one bite, that’s all it takes. If you, my dear readers, are willing to give it a shot, here’s my recipe:

Tofu Salad that M will love

1 tub of medium firm tofu (can’t remember the brand I got at Whole Foods, but it cost about a buck) cut into cubes
drizzle of sesame seed oil
4 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp Maruchan rice wine vinegar
2 cloves of garlic minced
dash of fish sauce (I use whatever I can find at the local grocery store-Ralph’s-Vietnamese or Thai fish sauce will do)
crushed red pepper to taste (optional)
1 tbsp thinly chopped scallions (optional)

Drizzle sesame seed oil, soy sauce and vinegar over cubed tofu in a medium sized bowl. Add remaining ingredients. Toss gently so as not to crumble the tofu (unless you like it that way). Let sit for approx 10 minutes before serving. I make mine the night before and keep it in the fridge until lunch the next day. Served chilled, it makes a cool summer savory treat. Today I had some leftover steamed brocolli which I also tossed with the tofu. Thinly sliced cucumbers are also great.

I didn’t measure out the ingredients so you may want to make adjustments based on how salty, tart, garlicy, etc you like your tofu. Bon appetit!

Ps. I've actually given this dish the family name, a decision I am thoroughly enjoying. I could have gone with something more Korean sounding, but then that wouldn’t be as fun. And if it ever becomes a household item, I want him to know that his name has been linked with tofu…forever.

Pps. The next time I make it, I’ll post a photo. As of now, my lunch is no longer photographable being that it happily resides in my belly. Yum.

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