Tofu-mushroom-bell pepper stir fry

I’m not super fond of tofu (I know it’s healthy and all!), but I try coming up with interesting recipes in the hope that I will like one of them (secretly hoping the husband likes tofu too *fingers crossed*) ! While surfing www.foodgawker.com (officially my fave thing to do!) I found this recipe and I thought it was interesting. Finally after making it, since the husband did not complain while eating, I think I have a winner in the tofu section 🙂

Ingredients:

1 pack extra firm tofu, cut into cubes

4 cloves of garlic, minced

1 green bell pepper, cut into chunks

10 oyster mushrooms, sliced

4 shiitake mushrooms, stalk removed and sliced

1 tbsp tamari soy sauce (you can also use any other dark soy sauce)

1 tbsp oyster sauce

1 cube chicken bouillon (use vegetarian bouillon if you want a completely vegetarian dish)

1 tsp cornstarch

2 tbsp water

Cooking oil (not olive oil, sesame will do. I used canola.)

Method:

Stir together soy sauce, oyster sauce, chicken bouillon, cornstarch, and water in a non-reactive bowl.  Set sauce aside.

Remove tofu from package and try and drain as much water out of it as possible. Cut into ¾ inch chunks.

Heat 2 tbsp of cooking oil in a skillet over high heat. When oil is smoking hot, add the tofu. Panfry, stirring occasionally, until tofu is browned on all sides, about 4-5 mins. Remove the tofu and set aside.

In the skillet add another tbsp of oil and reduce heat to medium-high. Stir-fry the mushrooms until they start to soften, and then add the green bell peppers and minced garlic. Toss the mixture around a few times to cook the peppers, but make sure they’re still crisp, between 30 seconds and 1 min. Add the fried tofu and stir-fry carefully, making sure you don’t break the chunks of tofu, just until heated through, about than 1 minute.

Add the sauce, and stir into the mixture until thick, less than 30 sec. If sauce is too thick, add a little more water and stir it in thoroughly.

Serve hot with steamed rice.

Bon Appetit!

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Spicy tofu

The past few weeks have been quite ‘busy’…I hate the word, but tend to use it a lot! Busyness in life makes me stressed. For the most part I am a laid back Type B personality. As much as I love rushing around getting things done, I do not enjoy the pressure that comes with it. When I am stressed I also cook…a LOT…so that’s good for the blog 🙂

I have been trying to follow some recipes I had requested from my mom and my MIL. They include spicy pork curry and roast beef. I did try all of them, but forgot to take pictures 😛 I will be trying them again soon, with a new twist. When I do, I promise to post the recipe and the pictures. I also tried lemon bars for the very first time and they turned out great!

A few weeks ago, I was on an Asian food roll. Here’s the recipe for spicy tofu that we had.

Ingredients:

1 pound extra firm tofu (cubed)

1 red onion, sliced

1 red green pepper, sliced

1 serrano pepper

3 garlic cloves, finely chopped

1/3 cup water

3 tbsps vinegar

3 tbsps soy sauce

1 tbsp brown sugar

1 tsp cornstarch

1 tsp red pepper powder

2 tbsps canola oil

Method:

Pat the tofu with kitchen towels, removing as much water as you can before you cube it.

Heat oil in a large pan or wok on medium high. Add cubed tofu and fry until golden brown.

After the tofu is browned, add sliced onion, bell pepper, serrano pepper and garlic. Toss it until the vegetables are just tender, about 5 mins.

In a different bowl combine the water, vinegar, soy sauce, brown sugar, cornstarch and red pepper powder.  Pour over tofu and vegetables to coat. Simmer everything together until the sauce thickens.

Serve either with rice or vermicelli

Bon Appetit!

 

Asian pan seared tuna with peanutty soba noodles

So it’s been really long. Part of the delay was because I took a surprise trip to India. It was my grandfather’s 90th birthday and since no one else in my family has reached that milestone I thought it was important for me to be there to celebrate as he stepped into a brand new year. While I was in India my low GI/low carb diet went for a royal toss….I was eating rice for lunch and dinner and lots of other sweets. Since I got back a few days ago I am trying to get back on track. I must admit that the task was made more difficult since there was hardly anything left in my fridge 😛

I did have some Albacore tuna from Trader Joe’s in the freezer. I defrosted it and thought I would try an Asian twist with some soba noodles on the side. End result – an absolutely lip smacking tuna that I am definitely trying again! I must admit that the pictures in this post don’t look very good. I had forgotten to take pictures so I took some pictures after I had taken a bite out of it 😛 While I am at it I should give due credit to the recipes that inspired me. The pan seared tuna was inspired from here and the soba noodles from here.

Ingredients:

2 (6-8 ounce) Albacore tuna steaks (3/4 of an inch to an inch thick)

1 tbsp dark sesame oil

1 tbsp chili oil

2 tbsp soy sauce

1 tbsp grated fresh ginger

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 green onion, thinly sliced

1 tsp lime juice

2 tbsp sesame seeds (for coating)

Method:

Mix the marinade ingredients and coat the tuna steaks with it. Cover and refrigerate for a few hours.

Heat a nonstick skillet on medium-high to high heat. When the skillet is hot, remove the tuna steaks and coat them with sesame seeds. Pan sear them for 3-4 mins on each side (or less if you want your tuna medium-rare or less).

Remove from pan and serve with soba noodles. Following is the recipe for the peanutty soba noodles

Ingredients:

2 tbsp peanut butter

1 tbsp soy sauce

1 tbsp honey

1 tbsp water

1 clove garlic, minced

1/2 tbsp rice vinegar

1 tsp sesame oil

Ground red chili powder – to taste

2 ounces cooked soba noodles

1/2 cup julienned carrots

1 green onion, thinly sliced

Method:

Combine the peanut butter, soy sauce, honey, water, garlic, rice vinegar, sesame oil and ground red chili powder.

Toss cooked soba noodles with the carrots and green onion.

Add sauce and combine to coat everything.

Chill in the refrigerator until ready to eat.

I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we did. It is really good for a quick weekday dinner if you keep everything ready and simply toss it together.

Stir fried soba noodles with lemon-ginger dressing

While I have always been fond of cooking, I started following recipe blogs only in the past 3 years. Mainly it was because I left all my recipe books at home in Bombay. But, ever since I discovered these blogs I have rarely felt the need to go look for a recipe in a book. Partly it’s because I know that the recipes in these blogs are made in a regular kitchen just like mine, as opposed to a hoity-toity chef’s kitchen 😛 Secondly, they are tested and tried recipes so I know that there is a lower chance of failing while trying them 😀

In my quest to eat healthy and to be on a low GI diet, I came across soba noodles, or buckwheat noodles. They are always available at Asian stores and are different from the regular noodles. Since they are, for lack of a better word, unique, in taste, I only made them once in a blue moon using ground meat or with beef and broccoli. Then I came across a blog that contains primarily Asian recipes. I rarely have all the ingredients available in my pantry, but when I do, I make it a point to try out recipes from the Steamy Kitchen.

Jaden Hair has done a fabulous job with her blog and I enjoy trying recipes from there. She also dabbles in a lot of fusion food, something that I enjoy doing too. So, here’s how I modified her tofu and soba noodles recipe:

Ingredients:

For the dressing –

Ginger, 1 inch, peeled and grated

1 tbsp. honey

1/2-1 tsp. chilli powder (or cayenne)

1 tbsp. lemon juice

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

1/3 cup soy sauce

2 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp. toasted sesame oil

For the noodles –

Soba noodles – 3 bunches (they are normally packed in separate bunches in one packet)

1 tbsp. cooking oil (either olive or sesame oil)

1-1/2 assorted bell peppers, sliced (I use red, yellow and green, just because the end result looks colorful!)

Mushrooms – 1 small pkt, 6-8 oz.

Browned sesame seeds (optional)

Method:

To make the dressing, combine all the ingredients except for the oils in a blender (hand blender is more convenient and easy to clean!) Run the blender for a few seconds, until all ingredients are combined. With the machine running, pour in the oils. Adjust the chilli powder to taste, we have ended up with really spicy noodles a few times 😛

Bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook the soba noodles until just tender, then drain.

While the noodles are cooking, heat a nonstick frying pan over medium high heat and when hot, pour in the cooking oil. Add the sliced bell peppers and sear them for a few minutes. Add the mushroom and stir fry together for another minute or two, until the mushroom looks cooked (make sure it isn’t over cooked). It’s important to have the heat on high while adding the mushroom. Toss gently and turn off the heat.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the soba with the dressing, vegetables and the sesame seeds. Toss until well combined.

Enjoy 🙂