Saturday, November 22, 2014

Orange Sesame Tofu – Eat, Drink and Be Vegan

I am extremely proud of myself for learning how to cook and eat an entirely new food group: tofu. I say food ‘group’ because there are lots of different styles and types of tofu. While I am not yet an expert in the tofu arena, at least I’m not terrified of it any more.  Yes, I was terrified of the harmless stuff just a few short months ago! Terrified, I tell you!

At first I had no idea what the scary stuff was let alone how to use it. I admit that I did not even know it was made from a simple soy bean. For you newbies, let me say that it’s not nearly as difficult as it seems to add this healthful food to your weekly menu.

 Zero dietary cholesterol and tons of protein. Plus it’s inexpensive! Find a simple recipe, like the one below and give it a try.  Hey, if Benjamin Franklin ate it back in the day and billions of people eat it nowadays, then it’s good enough for me.

I served this delicious tofu with Coconut Lime Rice (also from Eat, Drink and Be Vegan) and roasted broccoli with a garlic-chili paste dressing. A squeeze of fresh lime really brightened up everything. Excellent! 

Orange Sesame Tofu  (adapted from Eat, Drink and Be Vegan by Dreena Burton)
Here’s what you need:
2 t cornstarch
½ C freshly squeezed orange juice
1 t orange zest
3 T soy sauce
2 T maple syrup
2 T apple cider vinegar
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 T toasted sesame oil
1 pkg  (12 oz) extra-firm tofu, sliced and patted dry
Green onions and sesame seeds for garnish

Here’s what you do:
Zest the orange first. Squeeze the juice out of the orange. To this juice add the cornstarch and whisk until fully incorporated.  Add the zest, juice, soy sauce, maple syrup, vinegar, garlic and sesame oil to a 9X12 baking dish. Stir until well blended. Add the tofu slices and spoon each piece with the marinade. Allow to marinate for at least an hour or as much as 24 hours. Cover with foil and bake at 400 degrees for about 15 minutes. Carefully turn tofu over and spoon sauce over the pieces. Bake for another 10 minutes, uncovered. The sauce should be thicker and will continue to thicken as the dish cools. Garnish with green onions and sesame seeds.

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