Not joking, really. Even when I bake I have to change a little something at least, or I won’t be happy.
So well, I saw a couple of weeks ago a recipe that sounded interesting: Marmalade Tofu with Kale and Lemon Pearl Couscous, and thought to myself “Hey, this sounds interesting, gotta try it”. But of course, I failed in following the recipe, because I’m like that. My version is “Marinated Tofu with Bai Cai, Garlicy Shiitakes and Couscous”. In truth, they are four different dishes served together, with the Tofu as main, and the other three as sides. It’s a full meal, and delicious.
Recipes after the cut!
For the Marinated Tofu, you’ll need:
- 250gr tofu
- 5 tablespoons (Tbsp) of Orange & Elderflower Marmalade (from Ikea’s Bistro), or use any Bitter Orange or Lemon Marmalade of your choice
- 1 Tbsp soy sauce
- 1 Tbsp white miso
- 1 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp roasted sesame oil
- 1/2 teaspoon (tsp) smoked paprika (sweet or spicy, to taste)
- 1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- half onion, cut in half discs
- Press tofu: wrap the drained and rinsed block of tofu in two paper towels, then in a clean (please, clean!!) kitchen towel, and put on flat dish. Put another dish on top, and pile something heavy on top of the dish. Walk away for an hour or so.
- Prepare the marinade: mix everything else (except the onion) in an oven proof dish that can hold all the tofu cut in 1cm thick slices in one layer. Once the marinade is well mixed, add the tofu in one layer, turn to coat. Cover the dish with plastic film and walk away for another hour.
- Preheat oven to 200ºC / 400F, remove plastic from tofu, add the onion to the dish, and stick it in the oven for 40 minutes, turning mid cooking once.
While tofu bakes, make the side dishes.
To make the Bai Cai, you need:
- half Bai Cai (white chinese cabbage), leaves separated, cut in half lengthwise, and then julienned
- 2 Tbsp roasted sesame oil
- 4 Tbsp water
- 1 Tbsp soy sauce
- handful of raw almonds
- Heat half the oil in a lidded skillet big enough to hold Bai Cai. Add the cabbage and cook for 3 minutes. Add water and soy sauce, cover with a well fitting lid and steam for 5 minutes or until tender. Remove excess liquid.
- In a smaller skillet (or pushing aside cabbage), heat remaining oil, and cook almonds in it until golden and fragrant. Be careful, once the almonds start toasting, it’s easy to go from delicious to burn in no time. Better remove them when they’re slightly golden than too cooked. Add to Bai Cai. Keep warm.
For the Garlicy Shiitakes, you need:
- 200 gr shiitake mushrooms, clean and sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled, germ removed, and either pashed through garlic press or minced very finelly
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 Tbsp water
- Heat oil in skillet. Add garlic. As soon as garlic starts to sizzle, add shiitakes. Do not let garlic get burnt, unless you like the disgusting bitter flavour. Add a pinch of salt. Sautée mushrooms until well coated with oil and half cooked.
- Add water, cover with lid, and let cook, removing occasionaly, until mushrooms are completely cooked. Uncover, and let liquid evaporate. Keep warm.
For the Couscous, you need:
- 120 gr precooked couscous (the kind that only needs a soak for “cooking”)
- 150 ml water
- half vegetable bouillon cube
- 1 tsp roasted sesame oil
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- Put dry couscous in a heatproof dish. Heat up water until nearly boiling, dissolve bouillon cube and pour over couscous. Let soak until all the water is absorved.
- Fluff up couscous with a fork. Add sesame oil and lemon juice and mix well. Stick in the oven for 5 minutes while the tofu finishes cooking so it dries up a bit and the grains are completely separated.
Finally, serve all together, and dive in!