Wild Mushroom Pasta

I'm a big fan of Good Eats and Alton Brown. I've learned a lot from him. So when he suggested that dried exotic mushrooms were an umani flavor bomb I took to amazon to procure some. 

When you only cook with and eat plants, sources of deep and real flavor are important. 

His advice was spot on. I got a dried exotic mushroom mix and used it in my pressure cooker to create a sauce/broth for pasta and even though I forgot to add olive oil, it still had tons of flavor. 
After the pressure cook was finished I added the oil I forgot and cooked it off for a  few minutes. I then stirred it into my precooked pasta. Let it rest 5 minutes to tighten up. It was a perfect sauce to enrobe my pasta. . 

Dried exotic mushrooms are not cheap. But if you don't eat/cook with animal products, they feel like a bargain. There's so much flavor to be had. It's worth it and then some. 

Ingredients
1/2 box pasta, cooked to al dente

2 ounces dried fancy mushroom mix, big pieces broken or diced
1 pint …

Tofu Salad

Here's a fun way to flavor tofu. I like how versatile tofu is and I also love its soft, yet chewy texture when properly prepared. For a sweet and spicy salad addition with lots of protein and no fat, cold tofu really hits the spot.

Start with one block of drained, firm or extra firm tofu. Slice into thin strips or small chunks. Marinate in a a combo of 2 tbls hot sauce, 2 tbls soy sauce, juice and zest of one lemon,  3 minced garlic cloves, 2 tsps minced ginger, and 1 tsp curry powder. Let sit in fridge for at least 2 hours. Preferrably 4.

Heat a skillet lightly coated with olive oil to medium high. Add tofu, marindate and all to the hot pan. Let it sear on each side. Then continue cooking and stirring until most of the liquid is gone.

Transfer to storage container and cool for at least 1 hour in the fridge.

When fully chilled mix with fresh shredded romaine, shredded red cabbage, sliced red pepper and chopped carrots.

Your tofu mix should already contain the base of your salad dressing. Drizzle with additonal lemon juice, hot sauce or olive oil as desired. Top with fresh cracked black pepper and sea salt.

Minced jalapeno, chopped almonds and toasted panko make fabulous additions.