Saturday, February 13, 2010

Vegan Brunch

new take on tofu scramble

This brunch was inspired by one of my favorite places to eat, Bandidas Taqueria. Every time I hit it up for brunch I get a vegan benny, which is made with tofu and butternut squash. Like a scramble. It seemed a weird combination to me at first, and wasn't sure how i'd like it, but it's been love since I first tried it almost a year ago.

I've been meaning to try my hand at the combination myself for some time, and since I had tofu and butternut squash, today seemed like the right day to go for it. I served it over home fries and steamed kale and the result was a delicious brunch.
Next time I plan on making some cornbread and making sure I have some good fresh salsa to make it even more like a delicious Bandidas' benny.
As I didn't have any salsa, I threw some diced tomato on top. My kitchen is kind of sad right now.

new take on tofu scramble

Tofu "benny" scramble
Serves one as a big brunch.

1/2 baby butternut squash, or 1/4 cup cubed squash
1/4 brick of tofu (I had extra firm. Firm or medium firm would also work.)
1/2 small white onion
1 tbsp olive oil
splash of soy sauce (1 tbsp?)
splash of rice vinegar (1 tbsp?)
1/4 cup vegetable stock
2-3 tsp mrs.dash
dash of seasoning salt
generous grinding of black pepper
1 tsp itlalian seasoning
1-2 tsp cayenne pepper

In a small pot, add the squash and add water until it's just covering the squash. Boil on medium heat until squash is fork tender, about 5-10 mins. Set aside.

Chop the onion, and simmer in a pan with olive oil. Add tofu until most of the water has cooked out. Add the soy sauce and vinegar. Stir until liquid has dissolved. Add the vegetable stock and stir until almost completely absorbed. Add the spices and stir until liquid is gone. Add the butternut squash and incorporate.

Serve over home fries, cornbread, english muffins, or fly it solo in all it's own glory.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Tofu Florentine

tofu benedict

While I haven't been a vegetarian my whole life, and was raised a meat eater (though I use that term lightly, as I tried my best to never have to actually eat meat as a child), I have almost never eaten straight eggs. I don't mind them when they're hidden away in baked goods, but I always hated eggs on their own. The sulfur smell they gave off when my parents would scramble them used to make me cry. I recall on one occasion my parents forced me to take a bite, and I hated it's squishy, slimy, spongy texture. From that day on, I never let that mistake happen again. Though over the years i've tried to get brave,  and i've nibbled on friends scrambled eggs or omlettes from time to time, I still just can't get into eggs. Which I'm okay with. Because who needs eggs when you have tofu?!
I've been a lover of tofu scramble for a long time. But i've never tried another tofu'd take on an egg dish (eggs florentine and/or benedict) until this fall. The recipe I used then advised to use some vegenaise with spices added to it for the hollandaise sauce; traditionally made with eggs and butter. While I loved the lightly spiced tofu on a crisp english muffin with spinach and tomatoes, I thought the sauce that consisted purely of vegenaise weird and didn't get why this was a dish worth veganizing.

Today I tried a different recipe. Now I understand.
While I haven't ever had real benedict, and have most certainly never had the desire to, I don't ever need to worry about trying the egg version because this recipe is too good to question!

I slightly adapted this recipe from "Being Vegan and Getting Away With It".

tofu benedict

Tofu Florentine:

for the tofu:
3 slices extra firm tofu, drained
splash of soy sauce & rice vinegar

sprinkle the soy sauce and vinegar on to each side of the tofu. fry on medium heat until browned. set aside.

for the sauce:
3 tbsp margarine
2 tbsp all purpose flour
1 cup soy milk
1 tsp curry powder blend (or plain tumeric, curry mix was all I had)
1 tbsp dijion mustard
2 tsp mrs. dash garlic seasoning
dash of salt & pepper
1 tsp cayenne pepper
2-3 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp parmesean cheese (use nutritional yeast to make this vegan. I didn't have any on hand so i used parm.)
1 tbsp mayo substitute (use vegenaise to make it vegan! I am out and only have mayo in my fridge.)

Heat the margarine in a small pot over medium heat. Add the flour and whisk constantly. Heat for 1 min. Add the soymilk slowly, whisking constantly. Add the spices, mustard, lemon juice, parmeasean, and mayo. Whisk until incorporated.

Now all you have to do to serve is layer a toasted english muffin with slices of tomato, some sautee'd spinach (I sadly did not have any on hand) and then layer on the tofu, then drizzle with sauce.
Sooo good.