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.

Ingredients
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…

Vegan Thai Red Curry

I wanted a coconut milk free curry. So I went with a tomato base and rounded it out with a little vegan mayo. Slightly creamy, but mostly  lighter.

Some pickled granny smith apple to finish.

1 pint sliced white mushrooms
3-4 vine tomatoes, roasted, peeled, crushed
1/2 medium yellow onion, sliced
3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1/2 can or 3 tbls Thai red curry paste
1 can red beans, plus brine
Liquid from 1 can black beams *
2 poblano peppers, diced
1 serrano pepper, sliced
1 jalapeno pepper, sliced
3 dry shishito peppers
2 chile de arbol
2 tsps vegan mayo
1 tsp dry basil
3 tbls olive oil
2 tps salt
1 tsp black pepper

Brush tomatoes in olive oil and roast at 450 F for 15 minutes. Set aside to cool.

Saute mushrooms and onions in olive oil, salt and pepper until nicely darkened.

Peel tomatoes. They should be easy to peel by hand. Crush into mushroom/onion mix using hands. They're not pretty, but I like to put the peels and cores into the pot for extra flavor.

Simmer until tomatoes give up most of their juice. Add black bean liquid, red beans/liquid, dry chiles and curry paste. Simmer 10 minutes.

Add garlic, serrano, jalapeno, poblano. Continue to simmer until reduced by 1/3. Stir in basil and mayo. Take off heat. Allow to cool for 5 minutes.

* Save the can liquid from your beans when you don't use it. It's a great flavoring agent. It also has a lot of starch for thickening sauces.