Daily Archives: January 12, 2012

PF Chang’s Ain’t Got Nothin’ on Isa

Veg friends rejoice.  This is a meat-eater approved recipe (Christine tell Alex it’s good, like PF Chang’s good).  No one will look at you cross-eyed or make that funny chewing face, like when they hate it but are going to swallow it anyway just to make you feel good.  Take it to a party as an appetizer with some bib lettuce to really impress your friends, then tell them it’s tofu after they inhale it and watch them make another funny face…you know the one of shock when they realize tofu doesn’t suck.

This recipe served three as a main dish with a side of edemame with about 2 wraps to spare just using one block of tofu.

Lettuce Wraps with Hoisin-Mustard Tofu
Adapted from Appetite for Reduction

Tofu

  • 1 block (~14 oz) extra firm tofu, diced in 1/2 inch pieces
  • 2 tsp reduced sodium soy sauce

Sauce

  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced small
  • 1 small onion, diced small
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp minced fresh ginger
  • 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 3 tbsp seasoned rice vinegar (mirin is recommended but I didn’t have it)
  • 2 tbsp hoisin sauce
  • 1 tsp sriracha or sambal if you prefer
  • 2 tsp prepared yellow mustard

To Serve

  • About 12 romaine (bib or iceburg will work too) lettuce leaves
  • Bean sprouts
  • Dry roasted peanuts or cashews
  • Rice noodles (the crunchy kind)

Prepare the tofu: Preheat a cast-iron or heavy-bottomed nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the tofu and cook for about 10 minutes, flipping it once in a while, until it is browned on most sides. About midway through, drizzle with the soy sauce and toss to coat.  I had to add a smidge of peanut oil to this recipe when I flipped the tofu as it was sticking a little.  If you have great patience, and wait it out, it shouldn’t stick.  I do not have patience.  I did however have oil.

Preheat a separate large pan over medium heat with the sesame oil. Saute the red pepper, onion, garlic, ginger and red pepper flakes. Cook for about 10 minutes. The veggies should be soft and browned. Add the mirin (or rice wine vinegar would work here too) and let cook for about 3 minutes. Add the hoisin, sriracha, and mustard, and cook for another minute.  Omit sriracha if you don’t like spicy food.  In general avoid sriracha if you don’t like spice.

Add the tofu to the sauce and toss to coat. Serve alongside lettuce leaves, to stuff like tacos.  Top with the sprouts and crunchy bits.  Sidenote:  this is a great stir fry and would stand on its own over some brown rice or noodles.