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!
- 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
- Preheat oven to 350 and roast the tofu for 30 minutes.
- In a large dutch pan, saute the peppers, garlic and onions in 1 tbl olive oil on a medium heat for 5 minutes.
- Add the broccoli, tsp of sea salt, and sautee for 5 minutes.
- Add another tablespoon of olive oil then add the bok choy, minced ginger, mirin, stir well then turn to low heat.
- 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.
- In the large dutch pan, add the tofu when done.
- Slowly fold in the Green Curry and Coconut Milk mixture.
- Simmer for 15 minutes.
- Add the chopped basil and cilantro.
- Serve over white or brown jasmine rice.