Saturday, June 11, 2011

Laotian Pun Tofu

Years ago I worked with a woman who was Laotian and the couple of times she and her husband had us over, she made this wonderful finger food, using lettuce as the food container.  So after a quick Google and then putting my own spin on it here it goes.

1 large seedless cucumber peeled and finely diced
3 tomatoes finely diced
3 scallions cut into thin rings
lots of mint (I took the leaves off of 12 or so stalks in the garden).
2 packages of extra firm cubed tofu (you could buy it uncubed, this just saves time)
1 cup seasoned rice vinegar
Juice of two limes
1 cup Kikkoman Ponzu (essentially lime flavored soy sauce)
10 drops sesame oil
1/3 cup Tamari
1/4 cup sugar
4 Tbsp Hoison sauce
1 Tbsp olive oil

Optional: Alfalfa Sprouts

Remove the mint from the stalk, rinse the leaves, dry them and then slice them into fine shreds.

Toss the cucumber, tomatoes, scallions and mint together and let sit.

Put the tofu (drained) into a ziplock bag with 1/2 cup vinegar, 1/2 cup Ponzu, 2-3 drops of Sesame oil and 1 Tbsp Hoison and let marinate for a couple of hours

Meanwhile in a pot combine the juice of the limes, the rest of the vinegar, Ponzu, Tamari, 1/4 cup sugar and 3 Tbsp of Hoison.  Heat over medium heat until it starts to boil and reduce to a low simmer, reducing my 1/3.  Then remove from the heat and let cool.

Then once the tofu has marinated, in a large skillet heat the olive oil and about 7 drops of sesame oil.  Once hot, add the tofu and marinade, stirring often, until the marinade has cooked off and the tofu starts to brown.  Remove from heat and cool.

Once cool, stir into the vegetable mixture.

To serve: Take leaves of your favorite lettuce, tear a roughly palm sized piece.  Put a dollop of the mixture on the lettuce, drizzle with a little bit of the sauce, fold the lettuce over and enjoy.  For a little extra punch, add a pinch of Alfalfa Sprouts to your wrap.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Tamales redone

Sorry no picture on this one.  Almost two years ago I made portabella and black bean margarita tamales.  These were so much better.

2 cups Masa flour
1/2 cups water
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cumin

Mix all of these ingredients together, this will create a nice dough, kind of like what you'd have for cookies.

The filling can be anything you'd like.  I made half of mine with taco seasoned TVP, black beans and mexican corn.  The other half I made with yellow and red peppers and onion that I cooked down in a pan with some cumin and finished with about 2 tbsp of lime juice and 1/2 tsp cumin.

Take a sheet of parchment paper about 9 inches from the roll and tear it off.  I then rolled thsi up and cut it into thirds.  Take each third and put a thin layer of dough on it from one edge to about 1" away from the other, leaving 3 inches or so at the other end. 

Put some filling on it, then tightly roll and fold the extra parchment paper up.  Then place into a pot (I took the top half of my pasta pot and had it on the side).  Once they are all rolled, put water in the bottom of the pot and bring to a boil and steam for 30 minutes.  Make sure the pot doesn't run dry.  I placed a pyrex measuring cup in steamer section to make up for the empty space.

Serve with some salsa and guacamole.