Tofu steaks with sesame noodles and quick Asian pickle

by Sofia

I’m eliminating dairy from my diet for two weeks, which is harder than I remember. Last night I was in a bad mood, but around 9pm I went grocery shopping and put on Idan Raichel while I cooked. I wound up making this, taking mostly from Berley’s Fresh Food Fast and improvising a pickle, which I’ve been keen on doing recently. It was pretty, too, but I was so hungry I couldn’t wait to take a picture. Maybe next time.

1.5 lbs firm tofu, cut into 12 slices
3 T soy sauce
2 T mirin
2 T honey
1 t red pepper flakes
2 T neutral oil
2 bunches of vermicelli noodles
2 T sesame seeds
1 T toasted sesame oil
a few baby bok choy heads, rinsed
1 scallion, thinly sliced

carrot
2 radishes
scallion
red pepper flakes
salt
2-3 T rice vinegar
1 T mirin

Thinly slice the ingredients for the pickle, then add pepper, salt, vinegar and mirin. Let sit in a bowl.

Mix soy sauce, mirin, honey, and pepper together in bowl.

Start boiling water in a large pot for the vermicelli noodles.

Press excess moisture out of tofu with a clean towel. Warm a large nonstick skillet over high heat and add neutral oil. Let it heat for 30 seconds. Add tofu and fry until golden brown on bottom, about 3 minutes. Flip the slices, pour on the soy mixture, and cook until the sauce has reduced and thickened, about 5 minutes.

Add vermicelli to boiling water. Turn off the pot and let cook on stove until vermicelli are soft. Drain them, then transfer to bowl and toss with sesame oil and seeds, and a bit more soy sauce if you want.

Steam the boy choy in the large pot with a cup of water for about 2 minutes.

Serve noodles topped with greens and tofu, sprinkled with scallions. Serve with pickle as condiment.

PS. Maziar and I just agreed that we disagree that bees regurgitating honey is a silly reason to consider it non-vegan. So there.

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