Sweet Chili Lime Tofu with Steamed Collards and Quinoa

I was orignally going to wait on this post but due to a car accident this morning (picture below), I have an unexpected day off. I wasn’t hurt or anything. And the damage to my car was pretty minimal (I think) in comparison to the other cars involved. However for some reason it did make me crave a big greasy burger. I guess I am just used to comforting myself with food. Instead, I am thinking I will just munch on the yummy leftovers from this recipe.

Anyways, I have most defiantly become a fan of quinoa. I have been looking up some vegan recipes and inspired blogs. I found this yummy recipe from Vegan Yum Yum. I actually meant to follow this recipe, but I totally spaced grabbing mint last night when I was at the grocery store. So I will list the recipe with the mint, but just know it is really tasty without it if you aren’t a big fan.

There are a bit more steps to this recipe than my previous posts, but don’t let that scare you off. It was all really easy. And I was able to make everything in about an hour.

Sweet Chili Lime Tofu with Steamed Collards and Quinoa

Based off the recipe by Vegan Yum Yum

  • 1 Block Tofu, extra firm, 14 oz

Sweet Chili Lime Sauce

  • 3 Tbs Sugar
  • 3 Tbs Reduced Sodium Tamari (or soy sauce)
  • 1 3/4 Tbs Fresh Lime Juice
  • 1/2 Zest of the Lime
  • 1/2 tsp Red Chili Flakes (or 1-2 fresh hot chilies, minced)
  • 1 Clove Garlic, pressed, optional
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 4 Mint Leaves, chiffonaded

Quinoa

  • 3/4 Cup Quinoa, rubbed/rinsed in cool water, drained
  • 1/2 Zest Lime
  • 2 Bruised Cardamom Pods, optional
  • 1 Tiny Stick of Cinnamon (I didn’t have sticks, so I used 1/8 teaspoon ground)
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 1 1/3 Cup Water

Wok Steamed Collards

  • 1 Bunch Collard Greens, middle veins removed, washed (I just grabbed a bag of collards washed and ready to use)
  • 2-3 Tbs Water
  • 1 Pinch Salt
  • 1 tsp Lime Juice

Combine all the ingredients for the quinoa in a pot that has a tight fitting lid. Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce heat to low. Cook for 20 minutes, then turn off heat. Do not open lid. Let steam for 10 minutes before serving.

Prepare the sweet chili lime sauce by whisking all of the ingredients together until the sugar and salt is dissolved.

Drain tofu and cut it into small triangles. I slice the block into 8 rectangles, then each rectangle in half to make two squares per rectangle. I cut each square diagonally to make four triangles per square.

Heat a well-seasoned cast iron or non-stick skillet over medium heat. A 10″ skillet will fit all the tofu, so if you’re using a smaller skillet, you’ll need to do this in batches. In order to properly “dry fry” the tofu, you’ll need a pan the tofu won’t stick to even without any oil.

Spread the tofu out in one layer in the pan. Using a spatula, press the tofu. The liquid will squeeze out and boil away, and the tofu will begin to turn golden. The more water that evaporates, the sturdier the tofu will be, so be gentle at first to prevent the tofu from breaking up. After about 5-8 minutes, flip the tofu over and press the other side. After about 10 minutes of dry frying, you can turn off the heat and set the tofu aside for finishing later, or proceed to adding the sauce. (You might want to set the tofu aside before finishing in order to to prepare the collards)

To finish the tofu, bring the pan back up to temperature if it’s not already very hot. You want to heat the pan and the tofu over high heat, making sure the tofu is hot all the way through. Add the sauce and stir to coat the tofu. Turn off the heat. The sauce will bubble up, reduce, and form a glaze. If it isn’t bubbling up and forming a glaze, turn the heat back on high and cook until the glaze forms.

Add collards to a hot pot/wok with the water, lime juice and salt. Cover with any lid that will contain the collards and cook over high heat for 3-4 minutes until the collards are steamed and tender (I ended up having to do this in 2 batches, which required a couple more tablespoons of water).

For plating, arrange the collards atop of a bed of quinoa. Don’t forget to remove the cardamom pods before serving. Add tofu over the top, drizzling any leftover sauce over the dish. Garnish with lime slices and mint leaves. Serve.

My car isn't pictured, but gives you an idea how much fun this morning was.

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