Green Curry Tofu and Vegetables

 

Green Curry Tofu.jpg

One of my dear, sweet aunts has been very curious about the vegetarian lifestyle.  She eats no beef or pork and follows a healthy diet but she just can’t imagine how one can follow a strict vegetarian or vegan diet.  She says her wish is to primarily follow a more vegetable centric diet because it will make her feel better.  At 85, she has some general aches and pains and believes that perhaps this diet will help because the doctor’s aren’t coming up with any answers for her ailments (or maybe they’re not telling her what she wants to hear!).  Sometimes she embarks on eating as a vegetarian for a week, and she’ll start by going to Whole Foods on ‘Meatless Monday’s’ to get a platter that will last her a few days.  She was never someone who loved cooking, so that contributes to her inability to commit and be consistent with a vegetarian diet.  Nonetheless, she does give it a try.

So a few weeks ago when she arrived at my home with a case of tofu with one of the twelve packages of tofu missing I wasn’t surprised.    She bought the case at Costco and thought she would put tofu in her salad.  She ended up using very little of the 1st box, leaving the rest to spoil.  The idea of getting through the next eleven boxes seemed impossible to her.  I would also imagine that without prepping the tofu in any way left her with very little to be desired for using eleven more boxes of tofu.

Lucky me (and you!).  Now I have a lot more tofu on hand to get very creative with.  I started with my take on Green Curry Tofu and Vegetables.  I used broccoli and baby bok choy for my vegetables which provides the balance of crunch to the softness of the tofu.  I grew up on Yellow curry which is quite a different taste to the Asian Green and Red curries.  I love them all!

The green curry doesn’t give this dish its flavor, at least not all of it. It’s the marriage of the green curry with other ingredients – light coconut milk, ginger, and mirin, just to name a few.  What really gave this an unexpected boost was fresh basil.  Much like the tofu was gifted to me, as I was walking out of the house last week my next door neighbor asked me if I used basil and if I needed some just help myself to what she had on her porch.  She said they always have more than they can use!  What a win for me.  I told her to infuse olive oil with the basil to get more use out of it but I am also more than happy to take it off of her hands.  The basil coupled with the cilantro I planned for the dish gave it a burst of freshness.  I must be doing something right with these showers of food blessings!

This came together as a great meal served over jasmine rice and can stretch over a few days.  On that note, I will have to make some for my aunt so she doesn’t give up on tofu and perhaps this recipe will give my neighbor another way to use her basil.

Feed the wellness in you!

 

Green Curry Tofu and Vegetables

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 10 minutes

Yield: 4

Ingredients

  • 2 pkgs Extra Firm Tofu, cut in one inch cubes, drained, patted well between paper towels
  • 2 cups Broccoli Crowns
  • 2 baby Bok Choy, chopped
  • 1 can Light Coconut Milk
  • 2-3 tbl Green Curry Paste (I used one with no fish sauce but if you are not a vegetarian you can choose one to your liking)
  • 1 tbl Minced Ginger
  • 1/4 cup Red Peppers, sliced
  • 1/4 cup Yellow Peppers, sliced
  • 1/4 cup Red Onions, sliced
  • 1 tsp Sea Salt
  • 2 tbl Mirin
  • 1/4 cup Chopped basil and cilantro
  • 1/8 cup fresh chopped garlic
  • 1 tbl red pepper flakes

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 and roast the tofu for 30 minutes.
  2. In a large dutch pan, saute the peppers, garlic and onions in 1 tbl olive oil on a medium heat for 5 minutes.
  3. Add the broccoli, tsp of sea salt, and sautee for 5 minutes.
  4. Add another tablespoon of olive oil then add the bok choy, minced ginger, mirin, stir well then turn to low heat.
  5. In a small sauce pan combine the coconut milk and green curry paste, mix and keep on low heat until combined well for approx. 10 minutes.
  6. In the large dutch pan, add the tofu when done.
  7. Slowly fold in the Green Curry and Coconut Milk mixture.
  8. Simmer for 15 minutes.
  9. Add the chopped basil and cilantro.
  10. Serve over white or brown jasmine rice.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/green-curry-tofu-and-vegetables/

Chickpea Deviled Eggs

Chickpea Deviled Eggs

I had some friends over for drinks and nibbles last Friday (has it been a week already?) and in addition to dips and cheeses I wanted an easy appetizer to have along with a glass of wine.  I am a fan of deviled eggs although I had not made them in quite some time.  No one in my family likes them and there are also so many more creative appetizers that I enjoy preparing so I tabled the idea of making deviled eggs a long time ago.  However, deviled eggs have found its way on to restaurant menus in delicious combinations.  I’ve seen it with truffles, cheeses, tuna tartar, caviar, crab meat, even potato salad.  I love the freedom you have to refill the egg and with a variety of herbs and spices – tarragon, dill, curry – there could be so much going on in just one bite!

I shared this chickpea idea of deviled eggs with my friends and they really enjoyed them. I wanted a different way of presenting deviled eggs particularly for those watching calories and cholesterol levels. Chickpeas are a great way of getting protein so I eat them often and coupled with the egg white makes this doubly powerful.

I like that you can eat it with one hand and in two bites, with your glass of wine in the other.     It doesn’t take long  to boil the eggs and blend the chickpeas with other simple ingredients!  Quick, easy, classic and tasty.

Feed the wellness in you!

Chickpea Deviled Eggs

Prep Time: 40 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour

Yield: 24

Prep time includes time for the eggs to cool.

Ingredients

  • 1 dozen eggs
  • 2 tsp vinegar
  • 1 can of chickpeas, drained
  • 1 large lemon, juiced
  • 1/8 c red onion, chopped
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • Smoked Paprika
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground white pepper

Instructions

  1. Boil eggs in water and 2 tsp of vinegar until fully cooked. The vinegar helps the brightness of the eggs and the peeling process.
  2. Once cooked, immerse the eggs in cold water. Add ice to keep the water cold.
  3. Cut eggs in half and discard the yolk. Set aside.
  4. Blend the chickpeas, red onion, sea salt, turmeric, curry powder, cumin, onion powder, 1/2 tsp ground white pepper.
  5. Add juice from one large lemon.
  6. Mixture should be smooth and thick.
  7. Fill each halved egg with the hummus mixture.
  8. Sprinkle smoked paprika on the eggs and serve.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/chickpea-deviled-eggs/

Curry Tofu and Chickpeas

Curry Tofu and Chickpeas1 

Since starting this blog I stayed away from the inclusion of a tofu recipe thus far.  Despite preparing meals with tofu at least 2 days a week,  I figured a tofu dish would be expected on a vegetarian blog, very cliché and the obvious default.  I thought you would find it boring.   While chatting with some girlfriends recently they told me that although they eat tofu they never cook it because they didn’t know how.  They weren’t sure where to start and how to incorporate it into their lifestyles because they would if they could (they are not vegetarians). How many of you are struggling with cooking tofu?  If you don’t fall into this category and this post bores you, please return tomorrow!  But for those who are curious about how to prepare tofu, here’s the first of many tofu dishes, an easy Curry Tofu with Chickpeas.  I always have tofu and chickpeas in my pantry along with the required spices.  I am a first generation American, born to parents from the Caribbean so this style of cooking in this recipe is very natural for me to use.

Tofu dishes can be considered my ‘fast food’.  I regularly have it for breakfast, lunch or dinner.  It can be scrambled for breakfast, added to sandwiches and salads for lunch, used in an array of main and side dishes for dinner, and even in desserts.  The key to adding it to the dish is knowing the type of tofu to purchase depending on what you are making.  There are several different types of tofu – silken, firm, and extra-firm.  Silken is used for soft things like sauces or desserts; firm is best used in salads or things that don’t require a lot of manipulation like a wrap sandwich and extra firm would be used in stir fry’s, baked dishes or deep fried.  When eating out, do not be fooled by the inclusion of tofu in the dish as a healthier option.  It is often deep fried when it arrives so ask how it is prepared before ordering it.  If it is fried, just ask them not to.  It’s a quicker process for the chef to flash fry it than to dry the water out of it.

Tofu is packaged in a big block usually with water.

Tofu in white backround

What helps with  gaining the right consistency for your dish before cooking is to drain the water from the tofu.  I open the package, drain the water, slice the tofu, then wrap it with paper towels, changing at least twice.

Curry tofu 2

I then often bake for about 20 minutes at 350 degrees so it just gets a little firmer and slightly brown around the edges, as I did with this dish.  When I do bake it, I cube it before placing it on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.

Tofu

With this base of tofu preparation, you can try tofu in various dishes.  Here’s the Curry Tofu and Chickpeas recipe which requires this type of prepping.  I hope you give it a try.  I served it over a plantain mash but I also do it with rice and peas –  it works with any starch you choose.  Use as a side dish with your protein of choice or as a main dish if you’re exploring the green life on that day.

Feed the wellness in you!

Curry Tofu and Chickpeas

Prep Time: 40 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes

Serving Size: 4

Curry lends itself to be customized for those who love it so pay attention to your spices, taste and adjust accordingly.

Ingredients

  • 2 pkgs extra firm tofu
  • 1.5 cans garbanzo beans
  • 2 tbl extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/3 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 red onion, sliced
  • 1 tsp curry powder (mild, medium or hot - your choice!)
  • 1 tsp minced ginger
  • 1 tbl minced garlic
  • Sea Salt
  • 2 - 3 cups vegetable stock
  • 3 tbl curry powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp ground white pepper
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 cup scallions, chopped
  • 2 stems fresh thyme
  • 1 scotch bonnet or habanero pepper (optional)
  • 2 plum tomatoes, diced
  • cilantro

Instructions

  1. Prep the tofu as described above.
  2. Saute the red bell pepper, green bell pepper, red onions, garlic, ginger, 1 tsp curry powder for 5 minutes on a medium heat. Turn to low.
  3. Add your tofu and mix well.
  4. Add 1 cup of vegetable stock along with your chick peas, tomato paste, curry powder, onion powder, ground white pepper, cumin, turmeric, 2 sprigs fresh thyme, scallions, 1 tsp of sea salt, habanero or scotch bonnet pepper.
  5. Cook on medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring periodically.
  6. Add the additional cup of vegetable stock as it thickens, then turn to low for 25 minutes.
  7. Add salt to taste.
  8. Add the diced tomatoes, mix, then let sit for 5 minutes.
  9. Remove the scotch bonnet or habanero before serving.
  10. Serve over your grains with cilantro on top.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/curry-tofu-and-chickpeas/