Real food

After a few weeks of surviving on cereal, spaghetti, and other FYO (Find Your Own) dinners, I have finally come back to the kitchen. I go through these slumps occasionally, avoiding new recipes and becoming grumpy around dinner time, wishing I could eat something delicious without having to cook it. Then, inevitably, I wake up one day eager to browse through my cookbooks, whip up a huge grocery list, and start cooking.

I started with this recipe from Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone. What could be better than sauteed tofu, you ask? Caramelized sauteed tofu! Once the tofu is cooked and the veggies are chopped, you’re just minutes away from a steamy bowl of delicious veggies. I served this with steamed brown Texmati rice, and of course Justin doctored it up with some Sriracha sauce. What can I say? He likes it hot.

Stir-Fried Broccoli, Mushrooms, and Peppers with Caramelized Tofu

  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped ginger
  • 8 ounces broccoli florets
  • 6 ounces fresh shiitake mushrooms, stems removed, thickly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into long narrow strips
  • Caramelized Tofu (recipe follows)
  • 2 scallions, sliced

Add the oil to a heated wok or skillet. When hot, add the garlic and ginger and stir-fry for 1 minute. Add the broccoli and mushrooms and stir-fry for 2 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients, except the tofu and the scallions, then cover and cook until the broccoli is tender, 4 to 5 minutes. Add the tofu and cook for 2 minutes more. Serve garnished with the scallions.

Makes 4 servings.

Caramelized Tofu

1 (16-ounce) package firm tofu, cut into slabs, triangles, or cubes
2 tablespoons oil
2 tablespoons soy sauce
3 1/2 tablesoons light brown sugar
3 tablespoons water

Drain, then blot the tofu with paper towels. Cut it into 3/4-inch cubes. Heat the oil in a medium nonstick skillet over fairly high heat. Add the tofu and fry until golden. It takes several minutes to color, so let it cook undisturbed, then turn the pieces. Drain briefly on paper towels.

While the tofu is cooking, mix the soy sauce and brown sugar in a small bowl. While the tofu is draining, heat the skillet again and add the soy mixture. Reduce the heat to medium and add the tofu. Toss well, then simmer for 2 minutes. Add water and cook until the sauce coats the tofu with a syrupy glaze. Turn off the heat. Let the tofu cool in the syrup for 10 minutes.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone by Deborah Madison.

2 responses to “Real food”

  1. Ooh baby. I love tofu!

  2. oooh carmelized tofu sounds fabulous! ill try it- im always looking for ways to prepare tofu

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