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Recipe: Silken Tofu with Kimchi

Silken Tofu with Kimchi

Silken Tofu with Kimchi

Looking for a vegetarian entree or appetizer that’s full of spice and loaded with nutrition? Look no further. This recipe for Silken Tofu with Kimchi is delicious and takes about 15 minutes to make.

Kimchi is a Korean dish that’s a spicy blend of spicy peppers, cabbage and other Asian vegetables. I used storebought kimchi I got from our local Asian market, but feel free to make your own. Here’s a recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 1 block silken tofu
  • 1 cup kimchi, minced
  • 6 tsp soy sauce (I use reduced sodium)
  • 4 tsp chili oil
  • 1 TBSP sesame seeds
  • Silken Tofu with Kimchi

    Silken Tofu with Kimchi makes a great entree or appetizer

  • Chopped scallions, for garnish

Directions:

  1. Boil a pot of water and add tofu and simmer until the tofu is warmed through. This should take about 5 or 6 minutes.
  2. Drain the tofu.
  3. Divide the tofu evenly between 2 bowls (or 4 if making as an appetizer). Drizzle each portion with half of soy sauce and half of chili oil. Divide kimchi evenly atop both bowls of tofu.
  4. Garnish with green onions and sesame seeds, then serve.
Silken Tofu with Kimchi

Silken Tofu with Kimchi serves 2 to 4

I was surprised at just how much flavor is in this dish given the limited amount of ingredients and easiness to prepare it. The only problem is that I was left wanting more.

While this can be served as an entree or an appetizer, it’s probably better as an appetizer as the portions are small. I chose to eat mine as an entree as I had a tennis match to play an hour later so I wanted something light. This Silken Tofu with Kimchi definitely fit the bill.

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Posted by on September 6, 2012 in Appetizers, Cookin', Entrees, Recipes

 

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Recipe: Butternut Squash and Kale Salad

Butternut Squash and kale Salad

Butternut Squash and Kale Salad

Kale is a well-known super food. It’s also a very versatile ingredient in the kitchen. This recipe for Butternut Squash and Kale Salad combines two of my favorite ingredients to make a perfect salad.

This salad can be served hot, cold or at room temperature. Adding in toasted almonds gives it a nice crunch and a balsamic vinaigrette gives it a nice acidic kick.

Ingredients:

  • 8 TBSP olive oil
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 3 TBSP balsamic vinegar
  • Butternut Squash and Kale

    Butternut Squash and Kale

  • 1 bunch of kale, stems removed and chopped
  • 1 1/2 cup butternut squash, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 tsp hot sauce
  • 3/4 cup almonds, toasted and coarsely chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425F.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk 5 TBSP olive oil, balsamic vinegar, shallot and hot sauce. Set aside.
  4. Kale

    Sauteing the Kale

  5. In a medium bowl, combine squash and 2 TBSP oil, season with salt and pepper then toss to combine.
  6. Transfer squash to prepared baking sheet and roast, turning occasionally, for 20 minutes or until tender and lightly golden. Let cool slightly.
  7. While squash is roasting, heat remaining 1 TBSP of oil in a large skillet over high heat. Add kale and cook until bright green and slightly wilted (about 1 to 2 minutes).
  8. Remove from heat then add 4 TBSP dressing and toss to coat.
  9. Add squash and almonds to kale and toss well. Season with salt and pepper if necessary.
  10. Divide the salad among bowls and drizzle with remaining dressing.

This Butternut Squash and Kale Salad is fresh, flavorful and full of antioxidants and other nutrients. It can be a main dish or a side dish.

The flavors in this dish pair well with a fish or chicken dish. It’s also perfect for vegetarians and vegans.

 
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Posted by on August 14, 2012 in Cookin', Recipes, Sides

 

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Recipe: Tofu Coconut Curry

Tofu Coconut Curry

Tofu Coconut Curry

In one year I’ve gone from never having tofu to eating it at least once a week. It’s so versatile and goes well with just about everything, but especially curry.

The tofu really takes on the flavors of the curry well. Pair the tofu with coconut curry and vegetables and you’ve got a quick meal of Tofu Coconut Curry that’s loaded with nutrients and low in fat and calories.

Ingredients:

  • 1 can reduced-fat coconut milk
  • The Veggies

    The Veggies

  • Juice of one lime
  • 3 TBSP soy sauce
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 TBSP curry powder
  • 1 TBSP minced ginger
  • 2 tsp chili paste
  • 1 block extra firm tofu, cut into bite-sized cubes
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
  • 1/2 green bell pepper, cut into thin strips
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/4 cup basil, chopped
  • salt to taste

Directions:

  1. In a large pot over medium heat, mix coconut milk, curry powder, soy sauce, brown sugar, chili paste and ginger.
  2. Basil in Tofu Coconut Curry

    Adding the basil

  3. Bring to a boil and let simmer for 3 to 5 minutes.
  4. Add tofu, bell peppers, onion, mushrooms and tomato. Combine all ingredients, cover and cook for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Mix in basil. Season with salt or more soy sauce to taste.
  6. Continue cooking for an additional 5 to 7 minutes or until vegetables are tender, but crisp.
  7. Garnish with additional basil and serve over rice, if desired.

Make sure to thoroughly coat the tofu in the curry sauce. This recipe is quite spicy. My nose was running after eating it and my palate and body are quite accustomed to spicy food.

Also, the vegetables I used are just a guide. Feel free to experiment with a variety of veggies.

 
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Posted by on March 30, 2012 in Cookin', Entrees, Recipes

 

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Recipe: Perfect Guacamole

Perfect Guacamole

Perfect Guacamole

Guacamole is one of my all-time favorite things to make. It’s simple, fresh and nutritious. Over time, I’ve perfected my recipe, that’s why I feel confident in calling it Perfect Guacamole.

I think it goes best with tortilla chips, but it also makes a great sandwich spread or topping for most dishes. The only way to eat guacamole is fresh, I don’t know how people do the bagged stuff. Be sure and save the pits and put them in the bowl with the guacamole — it helps the avocados maintain their color.

Ingredients:

  • 4 ripe Hass avocados; peeled, halved and cored (save the pits)
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 jalapeño; cored, seeded and diced
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped cilantro
  • 2 TBSP olive oil
  • 2 TBSP chili powder
  • 1 TBSP cumin
  • 1 TBSP sea salt
  • 1 TBSP cracked black pepper

Avocados

Avocados


Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, season the avocados with salt, pepper, chili powder, cumin, lime juice and olive oil.
  2. Using a potato masher or large fork, mash the avocado and seasonings.
  3. Add in onion, jalapeño and cilantro then stir to mix well.
  4. Serve or store. If storing, place the pits in the guacamole (to preserve color) and cover with plastic wrap.

This is virtually a fail-proof recipe — no cooking, not much measuring and not much hassle. So if you mess it up, I feel kind of sorry for you.

Beware: the bowl probably won’t last long so you may want to make more. Just multiply the ingredients appropriately. This recipe should be about right for four people.

 
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Posted by on January 30, 2012 in Cookin', Recipes, Sides

 

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Recipe: Homemade Tomato Sauce

Tomatoes for Tomato Sauce

Tomatoes for Tomato Sauce

Mark the day and time because this will probably one of the only tomato-centric recipes I ever post. I don’t like tomatoes. But, oddly enough, I like ketchup, tomato sauce and most form of tomatoes that have been pummeled, pureed or simmered. Maybe tomatoes just taste better after they’re destroyed.

Tomato sauce is on my approved tomato dish list and is one of those simple sauces that can be used in thousands of ways. I enjoy making my own rather than buying it from a can, jar, bottle, etc. The ingredient list is short, but the cook time is high. You really only need tomatoes, basil, garlic, olive oil, salt and patience.

Ingredients:

  • 12 fresh tomatoes, halved and clean (squeeze out juice and set aside)
  • 3 cloves fresh garlic
  • 3 springs fresh basil
  • 2 TBSP salt
  • Olive oil

*This will make a pot big enough for a lasagna or a spaghetti dish to serve 4-6 people. Multiply the ingredients based on the amount of people you plan on feeding.

Directions:

  1. Prep a large sauce pot by placing it on the stove and adding a thin layer of olive oil.
  2. Tomato Sauce in the Pot

    Tomato Sauce in the Pot

  3. Fill a food processor (or blender) with tomato halves that are cleaned to remove spots. Make sure to save the juice and set aside in another bowl.
  4. Add garlic, salt and basil and blend until the mixture is frothy.
  5. Add the tomato mixture to the sauce pot.
  6. If necessary, repeat step 2-4 with remaining tomatoes. (You may have to blend more than one batch depending on the size of your appliance.)
  7. Simmer (uncovered) over low heat for hours. Yes, hours. You want to reduce the mixture until it was half the size of what it initially was. However, you can keep simmering for even longer if you want. The longer you simmer, the more flavorful the mixture becomes.
  8. Adjust seasoning while the sauce is simmering to your liking.
  9. Once it’s cooked to your satisfaction, serve with pasta or any other ingredient you have in mind.

If you don’t planning on using the sauce right away, you can jar it and refrigerate or freeze the tomato sauce until you’re ready to use it.

I’m not Italian so I’m sure many people have more/better ways of making a basic tomato sauce, but I can attest that this is a good one that will serve you well with your everyday cooking.

 
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Posted by on January 23, 2012 in Cookin', Recipes, Sauces

 

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