Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Oh so sweet, Sweet Chili Tequila Lime Tofu

Well, tonight has started off, much like any other night. I'm hungry. And I don't know what to make. So naturally, I start perusing the net for something new and interesting and delectable, that isn't too complicated, and includes ingredients that are currently residing in my kitchen. Well, I found a couple of things, but nothing really seemed right. So I went back to an old favorite. Which I ended up changing up and adding tequila to. And OMG! Soooo much better. I mean, everything is better with tequila. :)

Sweet Chili Tequila Lime Tofu,  Adapted from Lolo at Veganyumyum

Ingredients: (serves 2)

1/2 block extra firm tofu, drained and pressed


3 Tbs sugar
3 Tbs reduced sodium soy sauce
2 Tbs lime juice
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
1/2 tsp chili powder
1 large clove of garlic
1/4 tsp salt
about a shot or two of tequila

Also need:

1/2 cup quinoa (or rice or couscous or whatever grain you like)

3 or 4 large leaves of kale, washed and cut how you like it.


additional lime juice and chili powder


Start by pressing tofu. I like to squeeze any excess moisture out first. And then wrap in a paper towel, and wrap that inside of a terry towel, and place in between two large plates. Then place some heavy cans that take up space in your pantry, that you never actually eat, on top of the plate, for about 30 minutes or so. So, meanehile... Measure 1/2 cup of quinoa. And rinse and scrub. Add quinoa to 2 1/2 cups of boiling water in medium sauce pan. Bring back to a boil, and then reduce to a simmer. And cover. Leave alone for 10 minutes and then check periodically. It's usually done when the germ peel starts to lift off and the center gets translucent. Meanwhile, mix together the marinade. Whisk until the sugar and salt are fully combined. (at this point, it's totally acceptable to take a shot or two of tequila to the face) Next, start slicing and dicing your tofu into whatever shape you like best. I like triangles. (but try to get thin, even slices... although... I'm not too good at the whole sliced evenly thing...)We're going to dry fry the tofu, so we need a pan that the tofu won't stick to. Heat a non stick skillet over medium heat. Start adding tofu. Wait a minute or two until the bottoms start to get goldenish. Then start flipping every couple minutes. I like to alternate my flipping with smooshing. Think prevegan grilled cheese days. Where there was a stubborn piece of cheese that didn't want to melt thoroughly. So you would take a spatula and smoosh the crap out of it. I call this, "the grilled cheese effect." You want to get as much of the moisture out as possible from the tofu. It'll result in better textured tofu. So after about 10 minutes or so, your tofu should be nice and browned. Turn off heat. Stir marinade. Dump over tofu. (You want the pan to be hot, but not too hot, or the sauce will basically evaporate) And stir tofu into sauce. Sauce should be bubbling up nicely now and getting all glazey. At this point, dump tofu and sauce into a seperate dish. Add kale to same skillet. Stir for a bit. Heat is now on mediumish. Add 1/2 cup of water to skillet and immediately cover. Allow to steam for a couple minutes, until kale is all pretty and green and softened. Oh, check on your quinoa. If it's ready, strain the grain.. (ha. it rhymes).. and add a couple squirts of lime juice and a couple shakes of chili powder. And now, Plate up. Don't forget to drizzle any remaining sauce all over the dish. And prepare to smash... ok... Smash!

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