I love it when I can grab a bunch of stuff out of my fridge and create a great recipe. Turns out Isa Chandra Moskowicz and I obviously share an icebox. I got into Isa’s cookbooks only recently as I am not Vegan, only Vegan-ish. I’m considered Lacto-Ovo Vegetarian, so it was just a bit ago that I discovered that her TV show Post Punk Kitchen is now available on Google Video. As a side note, I’m happy to say that this Oprah mainstream stuff did not inspire me to go Veg or Vegan for that matter and I don’t rely on a personal chef to cook my meals for me. Hell, if I have a personal chef, of course I’d be Vegan!!!!! I’d also have a personal trainer, a car service, a magical camera to make me look skinny from all angles, the list goes on, and on. However, I don’t live on Fantasy Island and I certainly do not have humpback whales to give each of you just for reading this blog, nor do I plan to build a school in Africa or buy a TV channel. Sorry guys, I can see me slipping from your good graces one-by-one. I want to be able to thank Oprah for the Vegan push, but I feel like she probably just bought the Teese Vegan Cheese Company (yeah, they are in Chicago) and wants to increase sales or something. I know. Glass half full as usual.
At any rate, back to Isa, goddess of Vegan cooking. Here is what I most recently made as inspired by her highness: Red Thai Tofu from her newest and greatest Appetite for Reduction.
Red Thai Tofu with Sesame Rice Noodles
I used Tamari in place of soy sauce in this recipe to make it Gluten Free
- 1 block extra-firm tofu, pressed and cut into triangle pieces
- 1 red bell pepper, seeded and sliced thinly
- 1/2 C sliced shallots (which is a TON of those little buggers)
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 Tbs fresh ginger, minced
- 1 1/2 Tbs Thai red curry paste
- 1/2 C warm water
- 2 Tbs Tamari (or soy sauce)
- 1 Tbs light agave nectar (or maple syrup, or honey would be fine too)
- 15 leaves fresh Thai basil
- 1/4 C roasted salted cashews, chopped
Preheat a cast iron grill pan (or any heavy non-stick skillet) over medium heat. Add the tofu and cook for about 10 minutes, careful not to burn, just brown both sides. Take care while flipping the tofu in cast iron not to tear it, use a thin spatula, metal works better than plastic here. About half way through, drizzle with 2 tsp of the tamari and turn to coat.
Remove tofu, set aside and saute’ the red pepper, shallots, garlic, and ginger in the oil that is left, careful not to burn the garlic. Cook until translucent. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix together the curry past, water, tamari, and agave. Add tofu back to pan with the curry mix and cook for another 5 minutes or until the sauce is thick. Add Thai basil, toss one last time and serve.
Okay, so when I was looking at this finished dish, it needed a bed of something. Serve this on greens, or any grain you like, it goes well with everything. I grabbed some leftover stick rice noodles, cooked them in hot water per the package instructions, then drained them and tossed with 2 tsp of roasted sesame oil-this made a delish bed for the tofu.
Lastly, there were two other things I was going to toss on top of this delicious mess, fresh bean sprouts and a bit of chopped red onion, but I of course forgot them as I was so excited to eat 🙂