In my search for more meatless mains for my dinner roster I posted a question on my Facebook page: What's your favourite vegetarian meal. I got lots of recipes that I'll be trying but this one grabbed me enough to make it twice this week! Well, that's also because I forgot to take pictures the first time.… I'm new to blogging if that wasn't already clear!
This recipe came from John Crossingham, musician, writer, dad of the insanely cute Isla and husband of my co-worker Lesa Hannah. John recommends this Crispy Tofu for it's ease of preparation and the crunchiness of the end product. When John makes it he also makes kale in the same pan once the tofu is done. I think that's so smart as it means one less pan. I did a yummy broccoli and shitake mushroom dish instead. I knew tofu would be a stretch with Esme and the kale would be an even bigger stretch. I know, I know, I just posted about how we weren't backing off challenging foods. What can I say? Sometimes you're just not up for it. I served it with brown rice. I've become used to how long it takes to make brown rice. Always start it first and by the time your other dishes are ready the rice is good to go.
Yummy Broccoli and Shitake Mushrooms
1 head of broccoli, trimmed into florets
About as many mushrooms as it takes to be equal to the broccoli
1 clove of garlic minced
1 inch of ginger minced
1 heaping tablespoon of prepared black bean garlic sauce
Splash of low salt soy
2 splashes of rice wine vinegar
1/4 cup water
Brush your mushrooms clean. Never wash mushrooms with water. It will make them soggy and flavourless. I love the little mushroom brush Ben gave me for Christmas. Trim off the stems and cut the caps into 1/4 inch slices.
Sautee the garlic and ginger in a glug of vegetable oil until they smell great. Throw in the mushrooms. They'll drink up the oil and seem dry at first. Keep pushing them around and they'll kick off some liquid. Once they get soft, add the broccoli.
In small bowl mix the black bean sauce, soy, vinegar and 1/4 cup of water. Throw it over the vegetables and stir it all together. Cover and let it all steam for around 5 or 10 minutes. Poke it with a fork to check done-ness. Don't let it get too soft. It can keep warm in the pan while you cook the tofu.
1 Block of firm tofu
1/2 to 3/4 cup bread crumbs (I used Panko)
salt and pepper (chili flake is you like)
glug of vegetable oil
Take your tofu and place it on its side. Slice it in half. Cut each of these halves in half. Then cut those pieces diagonally so you have eight triangles.
Whisk your egg in a small, shallow bowl. The wine is mine, not my assistant's!
Dip each piece of tofu into the egg and then quickly dredge it through the bread crumbs. Place the coated tofu pieces on a clean plate.
Heat a small glug of vegetable oil in a skillet but don't let it smoke. Lay out your tofu pieces — you'll probably have to do it in two batches. Let them get brown and crispy. Keep an eye on them, it doesn't take long. You'll probably have to use your stove's fan. Flip them over and cook for another couple of minutes. If you're ambitious you can cook every surface but to be honest it's a bit tricky.
Serve with the brown rice and the yummy broccoli and shitake. We were able to mash up a bit of the tofu and give it to the baby so that was a bonus. A really healthy, delicious dinner. Thanks so much, John!