Tofu Garlic Vegan Mayo

I don't currently have the luxury of a lot of ingredients lying around. The coronavirus has turned everything on its head. Still, I'm trying to find comfort in familiar hobbies like cooking and origami.

What I did have was half a package of silken firm tofu that needed to be used and a whole head of garlic that wasn't getting any younger. That is the inspiration for this recipe. That, and my love of all things creamy and garlicky.

1/2 package silken firm tofu, drained
8 cloves garlic, stems removed
1 habanero, deseeded
1 serrano
3 tbls olive oil
3 tbls white vinegar
1 tbl salt
1/2 can chick peas, drained and rinsed

Puree all ingredients in your food processor until a creamy mixture is the result.

It's great right away, but you can chill it in the fridge for a few hours to thicken and let the flavors coalesce.

This is extremely garlic forward and also hot from the chiles. Because the mayo is tofu based and tofu has no flavor of its own, the full on flavor …

Hot Yellow Curry with Pinto Beans

It's time for another curry. Because there's always room for another curry. This one is hot and herbaceous and filled with meaty mushrooms and rich coconut milk. I keep it vegan. I also use nooch to add that umami quality that makes things cravable.

I used canned pinto beans for protein, for salt and also for the starch to thicken the sauce. I let Mexico, India and Thailand inspire me in the flavor combinations.

Here's the trick with curry... do not use curry powder. You simply don't know how much of anything is in there. Make your own. It's easy and you control the flavor. As Alton Brown will be quick to tell you, there's no such thing as curry powder in India.

Curry is in its most basic form a blend of spices. There are definitely certain spices that usually appear in the blend. And it's almost always very spicy and carries some heat. But curry is very subjective. If you're into Indian and Thai flavors you should be experimenting with your own spice combinations and ratios to create your personalized favorite.

Still, numerous recipes, including this one, can give you a jumping off point

1 pint white mushrooms, sliced
1/2 cup celery, sliced
1/2 cup white onion, diced
1 poblano, diced
1 jalapeno, diced
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 inch ginger, grated

1/2 cup tequila
1 can coconut milk
1 tbl canola oil
1 lime, zest and juice
1 tbl sriracha
1 tsp habernero hot sauce

2 tsps chunky salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp crushed pepper flakes
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp basil
1/2 tsp cayenne
2 tsps nutritional yeast flakes
2 tsps curry spice blend, see below

1 can pinto beans, plus can brine

cooked noodles to serve over

Saute mushrooms and celery in oil over fairly high heat. Season with a pinch of salt. When those are tender add tequila. Cook down until most of the liquid is gone. Add poblano, onion, jalapeno, garlic. Continue sauteing until all veg is tender and fragrant. Add curry blend let cook in now mostly dry skillet to toast. About 2 minutes.

Add coconut milk, sriracha, hot sauce. Simmer 5 minutes.

Add can of beans, remaining spices, yeast, lime. Simmer to heat through and thicken sauce. About 5 more minutes.

Curry Blend
2 tbls cardamom
2 tbls cumin seed
2 tbls coriander seed
2 tbls celery seed
1 tbl allspice
1 tsp cloves

Buzz up spices in a grinder. Store in an air tight container. Yield 3-4 uses.