Monday, August 23, 2010

Gourmet Eggless Salad

I've been making tofu salad for quite a while now. One of my favorite lunches is to take a quarter of a block of firm tofu and mash it raw with a fork while mixing it with 1 tsp. Vegenaise, 1 tsp. dijon mustard, 1 stalk of chopped celery, a bit of minced red onion, salt, pepper and curry powder. Sometimes I add a few halved grapes too. It's delicious as an open-faced sandwich and equally delicious on a bed of greens. My co-workers can tell you that I've eaten this lunch at least 100 times in the last year (Hey, what can I say? When I get on a lunch kick, I go all out). The best thing about that salad is that it takes about 5 minutes to prepare. No, the best thing about that salad is that it is packed full of protein and yet has surprisingly few calories (15 grams of protein and 168 calories to be exact). No, the best thing about that salad is how yummy it is. BUT this new eggless salad I recently made for the first time completely blew that lame old salad out of the water! Completely!! The only problem is that this salad takes considerably more time to prepare, but I guess that makes sense.

I got this new recipe from Vegetarian Times, who say they got it from the Red Lentil restaurant in Watertown, MA. Seeing how I grew up just several towns away from this place, I'm making a mental note to go there sometime when I'm visiting my parents (hear that mom and dad? I really want to try this place!) While this recipe has a much longer list of ingredients than my old standby, it's not any more difficult. First rinse, drain and dry a block of extra firm tofu, then cut the block in half the long way, and cut each of those in half so that you have four slabs.

Next whisk together the tofu marinade:
3 Tbsp. soy sauce
2 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
2 Tbsp. rice wine vinegar
2 Tbsp. maple syrup
1 clove garlic, pressed

Pour the marinade over the tofu in a baking dish and bake for 10 minutes at 350 degrees. Flip the tofu over and bake for another 10 minutes on the other side. Cool the tofu overnight or for at least a couple hours.

To assemble the salad, crumble the tofu in a bowl and add the following ingredients:
1 cup chopped celery
3 Tbsp. Vegenaise
1/4 cup chopped red onion
1/4 cup golden raisins
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/2 Tbsp. paprika
1/2 Tbsp. turmeric
1/2 Tbsp. cumin
1/2 Tbsp. ground coriander
1/2 Tbsp. lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste.

Mix everything together and serve over salad or as a sandwich or wrap. The original recipe also calls for chopped cashews, which are incredibly delicious, but I think unnecessary here-plus they add a lot of fat. This recipe gives you 4 servings, so sometimes I bake all the tofu and just save two of the slabs in the fridge for a couple of days before making another 2 servings for us to eat. This salad blew my mind the first time I made it. As a major former egg salad lover (that is before I learned that my cholesterol was horrible...I wonder why?) this salad made me forget any past relationship I ever had with egg salad. Or chicken salad or seafood salad or any other kind of salad. I promise, if you make this salad you will be converted too. It's just soooo good.

1 comment:

  1. So are those amounts of ingredients for all of the tofu? This does sound intriguing, though I'm going to have to get tumeric and coriander before I make it.