Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Tried this and liked it....

I'm trying to cook more vegetarian recipes. Mainly for economic reasons but also for health reasons. I don't want to be a "french fry vegetarian" and I've heard American vegetarians called. These people eat a lot of cheese and soy sausages. I'm trying to be more Indian about it. I'd like to use chick pea flour and lentils and yogurt as protein sources. This change requires a lot of research and frankly reaching for those ingredients is not at all intuitive for me. I'm working on it.

At any rate, while this is not Indian, I have long thought I should use tofu as a thickener in the blender more often. I found this recipe and tried it (aldulterated of course) It's pretty good. Dave loved it. I didn't make the deep fried tofu croutons - that seemed inordinately messy. I just actually made the vinaigrette as a sauce/salad dressing. It's good on broccoli slaw, which is pretty hearty. I reduced the sugar to 1 tbs, and the oil to 1/2 cup. I have no idea with sambal oelek chili paste so I used what I had which was harrissa. I also used Chinese cooking wine instead of sherry vinegar, which probably didn't taste as good, but I had no sherry vinegar and I added in some fresh basil leaves I had that were getting dark spots. I also used tahini instead of sesame oil but I can't see how that made any difference. It really is filling and quite tasty...but it's a flavor with, as they say on Project Runway, a "strong point of view". One could easily get sick of it after a whole batch.

The first night I dumped it on a hot meal in a bowl. On the bottom was brown rice, followed by a mixture of onions and a few leftover green beans and the rest of the tofu sauteed in plain soy sauce and a little canola oil. On top of that went some black beans I had simmered in the morning and then the sauce over it all. The next day I used it as a salad dressing.

here are the ingredients:

    For the tofu-soy vinaigrette:
  • 1 cup silken tofu
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons sambal oelek chili paste
  • 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • For the radishes and beans:
  • 1 pound radishes, preferably a mix of different kinds, trimmed and thinly sliced
  • Salt
  • 2 pounds fresh beans, preferably a mix of three kinds, such as green, yellow wax, and Romano, or haricot verts, snow peas and sugar snap peas, trimmed
All in all a good way to step out of my cooking comfort zone.
(next up i'm going to use tofu as a thickener in a dessert, like with cocoa powder and soy milk.)

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