Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Heidi's Caramelized Tofu Recipe

I made this back in February, but it would make a really nice Spring-time dinner. I actually made it within days of Heidi's posting about it, but because of that, I didn't want to chat about it while it was still fresh on her blog... and then it sat there and sat there... waiting patiently.

For those of you that shudder at the idea of tofu or Brussels sprouts, those that are quaking at the idea of both these ingredients together in one dinner, I beg you - suspend your disbelief and give this a try. The tofu-steaks are flavored nicely by the garlic, pecans and sugar, and the quick saute of the sprouts leaves them bright and crisp-tender. I promise you will not be disappointed.

I had great fun preparing this dinner. Not only was I able to break out my v-slicer to shred my sprouts, but I only dirtied up one pan during the cooking process! Sweet! The nice thing about the thinly sliced sprouts is that they don't need long in the pan to be cooked-through and caramelized. Only a few minutes to golden-up in parts, and you're good to go. Quick, easy, nutritious.

The varying textures were really nice, too. The soft-but-not-squishy tofu with the the crunch of the pecans atop the tender-but-not-squidgy sprouts... no uniform bites here! Try this. You'll like it.

Caramelized Tofu Recipe
c/o Heidi at 101 Cookbooks

7 - 8 ounces extra-firm tofu cut into thin 1-inch segments (see photo)
a couple pinches of fine-grain sea salt
a couple splashes of olive or peanut oil
2 medium cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup pecans, toasted and chopped
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
1/2 lb. brussels sprouts, washed and cut into 1/8-inch wide ribbons

Cook the tofu strips in large hot skillet (or pot) with a bit of salt and a splash of oil. Saute until slightly golden, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and pecans, and cook for another minute. Stir in sugar. Cook for another couple of minutes. Remove from heat and stir in cilantro. Scrape the tofu out onto a plate and set aside while you cook the brussels sprouts.

In the same pan (no need to wash), add a touch more oil, another pinch of salt, and dial the heat up to medium-high. When the pan is nice and hot stir in the shredded brussels sprouts. Cook for 2 - 3 minutes, stirring a couple times (but not too often) until you get some golden bits, and the rest of the sprouts are bright and delicious.

Serves 2 - 3 as a main, 4 as a side


Deborah said...

I love it when only one pan gets dirtied!! I still have never tried tofu - I swear one of these days I will!!

DaviMack said...

Yum! Thanks! We'll have to try this!

Kristen said...

I love anything caramelized. Looks yummy!