Archive | May, 2012

Crispy Miso-Shaohsing Tofu “Fries”

9 May

 French fries are delicious.  I love me some crispy, deep fried (or baked) potato strips.  But I had already started to press some tofu.  So I thought – why not try some tofu fries?

And they worked out surprisingly well.  The outer edges of the fries were crispy, the insides were soft and slightly chewy.  They had a light salty-sweet flavor from the marinade, and worked really well with the creamy and spicy yogurt-sriracha dip and sweet and tangy hoisin-vinegar dip.  You’re not going to fool someone into thinking these are deep fried potatoes, but they are pretty darn good.

Crispy Miso-Shaohsing Tofu “Fries”

Tofu “Fries”:

15 oz. block extra firm tofu, drained and rinsed

White Miso and Shaohsing Marinade (see below)

Non-stick cooking spray

Cut tofu into 1/4″ thick slices.  Place tofu on a stack of paper towels.  Top with another few paper towels and either a cast iron skillet or cutting board weighed down with cans.  Drain an hour or two, switching paper towels a couple times.

Heat a dry cast iron skillet over low heat.  Add tofu slices and cook 10-15 minutes per side until most of moisture has leached out and tofu is golden brown.

Place in a plastic bag and add marinade.  Marinate at least an hour but up to overnight.

Preheat oven to 425°.

Remove tofu from marinade and cut tofu into strips about 1/4″ wide.  Spray a tinfoil-lined baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray.  Add tofu “fries” in a single layer.  Spray again with non-stick spray.  Cook 10-15 minutes, turning once, until edges are crispy and deep golden brown.

Serve immediately, with dipping sauces below if desired.

White Miso and Shaohsing Marinade:

2 tbs. white miso paste

1/3 cup shaohsing rice wine

2-3 tbs. honey

1 lime, juiced

Whisk together all ingredients.  Set aside.

Sriracha-Yogurt Dipping Sauce:

1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt

1 1/2 tbs. seed-in sriracha

Whisk together ingredients and place in refrigerator for an hour to allow flavors to meld.

Sweet Hoisin and Vinegar Dipping Sauce:

3 tbs. hoisin

3 tbs. shaohsing vinegar

2 tbs. rice wine vingar

Whisk together ingredients and place in refrigerator for an hour to allow flavors to meld.

Spice Roasted Carrots with Mint

3 May

This dish is a nod to the fact that sometimes, something simple and easy is the tastiest and most satisfying.  This dish is singing with flavor – a nice heat that lights up the back of your palate with the distinctive flavors of cumin and garam marsala, a punch of bright, fresh mint and tangy Greek yogurt and balanced with the simple sweetness of the roasted carrots.  This is ridiculously easy with strong unique flavors – it would be excellent to amp up a simple roast chicken but would also stand up well to some full-flavored beef.  Both quick and versatile, this is a dish I’ll be making again and again.

Spice Roasted Carrots with Mint

4-5 large carrots, peeled, halved lengthwise, and cut into 3″ chunks

1/4 cup olive oil

1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes

1/2 tsp. ground cumin

1/2 tsp. garam marsala

1/4 tsp. whole cloves

Small handful mint leaves, chiffonade

1/3 cup plain Greek yogurt

Preheat oven to 350º.

Add carrots to a shallow casserole dish and toss with olive oil and spices.  Add to oven and roast 25-30 minutes until carrots are tender and lightly caramelized around the edges.  Remove cloves.

Transfer to serving dish and spoon a few tablespoons of the olive oil from the casserole dish over the carrots.  Add yogurt and mint.  Serve immediately.

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