Spicy Barbecue Tofu

Tofu tends to get a bad rap. If it's not prepared properly it can feel like eating an old sponge and taste of absolutely nothing. On the other hand, when treated well, tofu can be a scrumptious treat for the senses as well as powerful nourishment for the body.

I first fell in love with tofu through my local Chinese takeout. They have deep fried tofu with sauteed vegetables. Deep fried tofu has the perfect chewy exterior and pillowy soft center. It tastes of all the vegetables, oil and soy sauce from the wok.

I've experimented with cooking tofu at home. I don't really deep fry. But there are other great ways to prepare tofu as a main protein. I like to broil it. I use a classic meat eaters method to give it flavor. I brush it with a glaze before and mid cooking. It works brilliantly both in terms of flavor and texture.

It's totally vegan.

1 package extra firm tofu
4 tbls olive oil
2 tbls hot sauce
2 tbls sriracha
1 tbl apple cider vinegar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp…

Asian Carrot Fettuccine

I found myself inspired by all those vegetable versions of noodles and pasta. I think they're silly. Pasta is delicious. Zucchini noodles are not. Carbs are awesome.

Still, ribbons, are a great way to quickly process carrots for easy cooking. It's also pretty.

I don't want to spend time julienning carrots. Sliced take too long to cook. So shaved seemed like a perfect marriage of both aesthetics and function.

Normally, I don't peel carrots. I just wash them and slice. With this method, you do peel, but you just keep peeling the entire carrot right down to the core. Don't discard the outer peels. All of the peels are usable. Besides being great for quick cooking, they're also good for texture as a raw garnish.

When you get down to the carrot cores, reserve them for snacks or stocks.

2 large carrots, shaved into ribbons
1 pint white mushrooms, sliced
1 bunch scallions, sliced on the bias
1 poblano, diced
1 jalapeno, minced
7 cloves garlic, microplaned
2 inches fresh ginger, microplaned
1 can garbanzos and can juice
2 1/2 tbls low sodium soy sauce
2 tbls sriracha
1 lime, zest and juice
1 tsps fresh black pepper

1 pint orange grape tomatoes, sliced
2 handfuls fresh basil chiffonade

1/4 cup red wine
2 tbls olive oil

2 tsps crushed pepper flakes
2 tsps celery seed
1 tsp cayenne powder
1 tsp cumin seed
5 whole cloves

Put the first group of ingredients into a large stock pot or deep dish skillet. . Bring up to  medium heat and simmer 2 minutes. Add oil. Stir to coat contents of pot in the oil. Simmer 5 more minutes. Add wine. Cook off wine and scrape pan to deglaze carmelized bits.

Add dry seasoning. Simmer 15 miinutes.

Turn off heat. Stir in tomatoes and basil. Let rest 5 minutes.