Tuesday 25 May 2010

Sophie's moreish tofu - adapted

It has been busy here lately so I was quite pleased to finally get on top of my growing list of unread posts in my blog reader (I confess I partly managed this by accidentally selecting a large amount of unread posts and making them read). This means I that I have been able to catch up with neglected blogs, including Nupur's One Hot Stove.

While reading about her latest post this morning (a lovely Strawberry Cake), I found that she is hosting an event for bloggers to post about a recipe they have adapted from another blog. It appealed to me because rarely do I follow a recipe to the letter. The event closes today so I found a recipe I have been meaning to post that fits the bill. The Tofu with a moreish tomato and ginger sauce dish came from Sophie at Mostly Eating. I was particularly interested in the recipe because it used lemongrass and molasses, neither of which I would usually pair with tofu in this way.

Looking at my notes about the ingredients I used and my photos, I remembered that I had made quite a few changes. Firstly I had halved the recipe because I didn't have enough tofu. I didn't have fresh chillis so I used cayenne pepper instead and I added some red papper because I wanted to use it up. I also decided to change the method and cook the tofu in the sauce rather than frying it and adding it at the end. My logic was that I like tofu to absorb as much flavour as possible.

The tofu was lovely, though it seemed to have a bit less sauce than Sophie's. Maybe my tofu absorbed more of it. The flavours were delicious. We ate it with broccoli and roti but I would like to try it with rice or even rice noodles for a gluten free alternative.

So with my blog reader temporarily under control I have a new project (though I have so much tidying around the house that needs to be done as well as a scarf to finish knitting for Sylvia). I have tired of having so many recipes bookmarked that I never return to or can find when I need them. My new project is to try and start bookmarking recipes on Delicious so that I can search my bookmarks by ingredients. I usually avoid signing up to more sites that will take up more time, but I am hoping this one will help me organise myself a bit more efficiently.

Previously on Green Gourmet Giraffe:
This time last year: Resurrection Potato and Pasta Bake
This time two years ago: Baked Bean Soup
This time three years ago: Café Bellino: Rustic Charm in Brunswick

Tofu in a tomato, lemongrass and ginger sauce
Adapted from Mostly Eating
Serves 2

250g firm tofu
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Thumb sized piece of ginger, finely grated and juice squeezed out
½ stick lemongrass, finely chopped
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
1 medium onion, chopped
½ red pepper, chopped
1 x 400g can chopped tomatoes
½ heaped tsp molasses
1 tbsp soy sauce or tamari
juice of ½ lime (optional - I forgot about these)

Press tofu between two plates, wrapped in a piece of kitchen towel (or a clean tea towel) with a heavy weight on top. Leave for at least 10 minutes while you prepare the other ingredients.

Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large frypan over a medium heat and fry onions for about 5 minutes. While onions are cooking, chop the tofu into chunks. Add the red pepper and fry for another few minutes til it is softened. Remove onion/red pepper mixture and set aside, Add 1 extra tablespoon and the tofu to the frypan and cook for about 10 minutes until the tofu is lightly browned.

Return onions and red pepper to the tofu, add lemongrass, cayenne and garlic. Cook a few minutes, stirring frequently, til fragrant. Add tomatoes, molasses, soy sauce and ginger juice. Simmer for about 10 minutes until liquid thickens slightly. Serve with a squeeze of lime juice (if you remember).

On the Stereo:
Worker's Playtime: Billy Bragg


  1. I tremendously like the look of this, and am in complete agreement about your logic regarding absorbtion (that's why I marinated tonight's tofu for 8 hours, though partly that was to make it more palateable for my tofu-averse father).

    I would never have thought of combining molasses with lemongrass and ginger, but your photo (and report) makes me think this will be a good'un for my Smurf Kitchen :D [what was that you said about your google reader? ;)]

  2. Thank you for a fantastic entry, Johanna! The tofu looks completely delicious- I love the flavor of lemongrass.

  3. Looks really tasty. I wish it was sitting in front of me right now, I am totally uninspired tonight.

  4. Whoops, didn't realise Graham was logged in.

  5. What a great idea for an event! I think we're all adapting recipes all the time to suit our tastes and ingredients anyway! :)

  6. yummmmmmmmmmmmmmmm!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. Thanks Hannah - hope your dad comes around to tofu - I remember being a bit gung ho as a youngster in introducing my dad to tofu - would be gentler these days - hope this dish makes an appearance in the smurf kitchen - I need to repeat it because it is so good - and re the blog reader (I use bloglines) I am trialling a new way of bookmarking recipes in my constant search for better ways to get organised

    Thanks Nupur - glad to find out about the event - it is a good one

    Thanks Jacqueline - Graham's name made me laugh - ironically I am posting this recipe when I am too feeling uninspired - E will wish he was back in scotland with a nice freezer meal from M&S the way I am cooking!

    Thanks Lorraine - adaptation is one of the things I love about reading about recipes on blogs - it is so fascinating to see the changes others make

    Thanks Carla - oh yesssssssssssssss

  8. No, I wouldn't have thought of using molasses with tofu either - nice idea though and your moreish tofu looks delicious.

  9. This dish does look flavoursome - I adore ginger, and I personally don't have an issue with tofu (although a lot of people I know do!). I know what you mean about the bookmarks - I recently just tossed a bunch of recipes I'd printed because there were so many and they took up so much space.

  10. Thanks Choclette - I actually couldn't taste the molasses much and wondered if I should add some more as I love it - but I guess it is a matter of balance

    Thanks Cakelaw - I always feel sad when people have problems with tofu because I think it is like a chameleon and it is just a matter of finding the right way to eat it - as for tossing bookmarked/printed recipes, I understand - there are just too many to cook!

  11. You're right, when you put it like that molasses and lemongrass together does sound a bit odd!

    I'm glad the recipe worked for you and I like your addition of more veggies in the form of the red peppers

  12. this sounds interesting, I'm always looking for new and unexpected things to do with tofu. Definitely going to make a note of this!

  13. Hi Johanna, I'm a long-term reader, but I don't think I've commented before. I made this at the weekend, and it's the first time I've made something with tofu we actually liked! Your addition of peppers - which I left slightly crunchy - was inspired. Thank you :)

  14. It's hard to find good tofu recipes and it's always nice to discover one that does something you hadn't thought of like this one! To keep track of recipes I've found on blogs or websites, I email them to a different email account (which is used for my blog and sending myself recipes). Delicious seems like a great site but I get paranoid that people will take down their blog or it will move and I'll lose the precious precious recipes!


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