I loooooove tofu.
Perhaps it’s because I grew up in a house of vegetarians or because I’ve found great recipes that have repeatedly delighted my tastebuds. Anywho, I don’t eat meat that often, just the occasional strip of bacon or slices of salami about twice a month. However now I’ll eat it once or twice a week because my bf is on the ketogenic diet which is a low carb diet, and includes only consuming meat, veggies and cheese.
In our home we only purchase naturally grazing, antibiotic free, nitrate free, humanely raised/killed, meat and cage free eggs. Watch Food Inc., it’ll change your life! Well, it changed my life anyway. I embraced different buying and eating habits after consuming that film, and for me there was no going back. Being fortunate to live in Cali, there’s lots of places to acquire such goods, but there’s no TJ, Sprouts, or Whole Foods near us, living in the heart of Downtown LA, so sometimes we have to wait a week before planning a trip to the store and we just walk to Ralphs nearby and get other sustaining foods.
This is one reason why it’s good to have tofu on hand.
When you’re outta meat and need a filler, tofu to the rescue!
When you’ve eaten everything in your fridge and it’s a month later guess what’s still fresh? Tofu, that’s right!
Seriously it’s as versatile as meat.
I use it to make tacos, scrambles to replace the meat or the eggs, as the “meat” in pastas, cut up and baked, in curry; the list is endless with TOFU!!!
And the benefits?
A half-cup serving of tofu contains 94 calories, 2 g carbs, 5 g of fat, and 10 g of protein.
Tofu, made from soybean curds, is naturally gluten-free and low calorie, contains no cholesterol and is an excellent source of protein, iron, and calcium.
Tofu provides 44% of daily calcium needs, 9% of magnesium, and 40% of iron and also contains small amounts of vitamin K, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B-6, folate, choline, phosphorus, manganese and selenium. (MedicalNewsToday.com)
Ok, let me calm down. 😛 But you can see I’ve got quite the zeal for Tofu
WHAT YOU NEED
2 blocks of Firm Tofu, if you don’t use firm you’re going to have mush on your hands, literally
1c Organic Coconut Oil *or enough to saturate/coat all the triangles
1/4 c Feta
1/2 tsp Cinnamon *I add cinnamon to all my meat dishes (and we’re pretending this is meat), because it adds a little sweetness to the other strong salty flavors, like a sweet bbq sauce
1 tsp Paprika, more if you really like spicy
1 1/2 tsp Ground Black Pepper
1 tbsp Garlic Powder
3-4 shakes Lawrys Seasoning Salt
6-7 squirts of Liquid Smoke
1/2-3/4 c King Arthur Unbleached All Purpose Flour
2 c Broccoli *I prefer fresh, but we only had frozen and it was delish
WHAT TO DO
Preheat oven to 350 *I like to preheat while I prep, so by the time I’m done preparing everything, I can just pop it in.
Cut a slit in the top of the tofu packaging, just enough to drain the water out at a decent pace. If you rip the whole top off, then you have to hold the tofu as you dump the water, and I prefer to not do that. But do whatever tickles your fancy!
Place tofu on a plate and press/pat the tofu dry with paper towels. Don’t get too aggressive with it or you’ll crumble the tofu.
Cut the blocks into triangles as small as you’d like.
Combine liquid smoke, coconut oil, pepper, Lawrys, garlic powder, and paprika into a mixing bowl large enough to fit all the triangles of tofu. We’re going to marinate them.
The goal is to have the amount of smokey flavor you want, so once you combine all the ingredients, stick your finger in for a little taste and adjust measurements to your liking
Stir the mixture in your bowl and toss the triangles in. Coat them by swirling the bowl and using a wooden spoon to gently turn over some of the pieces so that they are all covered with the ingredients.
*Coated, not submerged. Tofu is like a sponge, so if you have too much liquid it’ll take longer to cook because the pieces will be all soggy. Should I have put this note up further in instructions? eek!
Line a baking pan with foil for easy cleanup, or use an oven safe dish with tall sides and big enough to spread out the triangles.
*The coconut oil at this point has probably solidified and is all clumpy on the triangles, it’s ok. It will remelt in the oven.
Ceremoniously dump the triangles and mixture into the pan/dish. Keep them crowded together like a jam packed club on Saturday night, just make sure the pieces aren’t piled on top of each other.
Bake for 12 mins
Now drain a majority of the liquid, spread the tofu out some so they’ll bake more easily, and toss about 2-3 handfuls of flour onto them. The flour is going to help firm up the tofu and make it nice and deliciously crispy.
Bake another 12-16mins, or until they’re browned to your liking. I like mine golden and crispy.
Cool for 5 mins in order to firm up even more.
If you’re using frozen broccoli, put a regular size bowlful into the microwave, with 1/3 of the bowl filled with water. Heat for 6 mins. Then drain water and add a pinch of salt.
Serve yummy tofu up in a bowl, add the broccoli, and sprinkle feta on top.