Tofu Tuesday: Salad

Salad doesn’t have to be a boring mixture of lettuce, cucumber and tomato. You can make endless variations with different vegetables, they can be fresh, cooked or canned. A bowl of salad can be a filling meal with protein source such as beans, lentils, tofu, soy curls, nuts or seitan, and even more filling with some pasta or boiled potatoes. Besides, salad is a perfect lunch: it doesn’t take long to prepare it and you can take it to work or picnic or wherever, because you don’t have to worry about reheating it.

This tofu and rice vermicelli salad is Asian inspired, even though I didn’t have any particular Asian country in my mind while I made it. My favourite dressing for this kind of salads is peanut dressing: I blend 3 tbsp peanut butter, 1 medium hot chili pepper, garlic clove, some lemon juice or vinegar together and season with salt and pepper.

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Tofu Salad with Vermicelli and Black Beans

250 g tofu (frozen and thawed)

marinade:
juice of a half grape fruit
0,6 dl white wine
1 garlic clove
salt

oil for frying

1 l cabbage
2 carrots, grated
3 dl black beans
3 tbsp tofu marinade
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp mirin
pinch of salt
50 g rice vermicelli (1 portion)
1 small red onion
piece of red bell pepper

Combine marinade ingredients and marinade diced tofu overnight.

Heat some oil on a frying pan and fry tofu until golden.

Put the cabbage in a bowl and squeeze it with your hands until soft. Peel and grate carrot and put it to the bowl. Add beans, 3 tbsp marinade, olive oil, mirin and salt and stir. Prepare rice vermicelli according to instructions on the package. Slice the onion thinly and cut the bell pepper in strips. Divide the cabbage mixture into bowls and arrange the other ingredients on top of it. Serve with your favourite dressing, or drizzle 1 tbsp marinade on each bowl.

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Thursday Stir-Fry

I haven’t cooked much with tempeh, because it’s rather hard to find here in Finland. Last week I was visiting my sister in Helsinki and brought home two packaged of tempeh. One is in the freezer for later use and one was used for noodle stir-fry today with vegetables we had in fridge and freezer.

Tempeh and Noodle Stir-fry

3 tbsp oil
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp paprika
1 habanero
400 g tempeh (1 package)
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp rice wine vinegar

2 tbsp oil
1 tsp brown mustard seeds
2 tsp ginger powder
1-2 onions
3 garlic cloves
2 carrots
piece of rutabaga
florets of 1 broccoli
1 bell pepper
2-3 handfuls snow peas (frozen)

100-150 g whole wheat noodles

soy sauce and/or hot sauce for serving (optional)

You can first boil your tempeh 10-20 minutes to remove bitterness. Cube the tempeh and mince the habanero. Slice the onion and garlic. Cut carrots, rutabaga and bell pepper into sticks.

Heat 3 tbsp oil in a wok and fry cumin, paprika and habanero about 30 seconds. Add tempeh and stir to cover with spicy oil. Add soy sauce and rice wine vinegar and stir again. Fry, stirring often, until tempeh is nicely browned. Remove from the wok.

Heat 2 tbsp oil in the wok and fry ginger and mustard seeds about a minute. Add onion and garlic. Fry couple of minutes, add carrot and rutabaga, then bell pepper and broccoli. Boil the noodles 2-3 minutes or according the instructions on the package while you stir-fry the veggies. When the vegetables are almost done, add snow peas. When they’ve thawed, add noodles and tempeh.

Something Simple

If I don’t feel like cooking I often just throw some noodles and other things to a pot and boil them few minutes. Today was one of those days. I will add a picture later if the camera and computer start co-operating. And here’s the picture!

Noodles with Mushrooms and Vegetables

1 l water + bouillon cube (mushroom or other)
2 handfuls of dried funnel chanterelles
some dried chard stalks
1 big carrot
half bell pepper
1 celery stalk
2 handfuls of frozen green beans
1 handful frozen kohlrabi
100g whole wheat noodles
1 onion
soy sauce for serving

Cut carrot, bell pepper and celery into strips. Bring the water to boil and dissolve bouillon cube in it. Add funnel chanterelles, chard, carrot, bell pepper and celery, and boil 2-3 minutes. Throw in frozen veggies and noodles and boil 3 more minutes. Cut the onion in thin half moons and stir it in before serving. Nom nom.

Almost Instant

As far as I know, Japanese ramen always contains some kind of meat. My vegan version of ramen is made of whole wheat noodles, tofu and vegetables. This time I used carrot, bamboo shoots and red cabbage, which dyes everything pink, but you can use any vegetables you have.

Tofuhead’s Ramen

8,5 dl water
1 vegetable bouillon cube (preferably MSG free)
2 tsp miso powder
7,5 dl vegetables, cut into strips (cabbage, carrot, onion, green beans, bamboo shoots etc.)
350g tofu
100g whole wheat noodles
soy sauce for serving (optional)

Bring the water to boil and dissolve the bouillon cube and miso powder in it. Add the vegetables and tofu and simmer 2-3 minutes. Add noodles and simmer 3 more minutes.