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Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Beer Battered Tofu & Veggies with Sweet Chili Sauce

Beer Battered Tofu & Veggies with Sweet Chili Sauce

For those who know me well, you know I'm not one to crave deep fried foods. Nor, am I one to use a lot of oil in my cooking, however I've been craving a deeply encrusted tofu dish. Bruce loved all of it, always one to be up for a gourmet meal. This dish stands alone perfectly with the chili sauce.
While I was prepping the chili sauce, I had the tofu between two plates with a can or jar of whatever you have that is 8 oz. or heavier. This squeezes/presses out the extra liquid from the tofu, without a lot of hands on. (It took about 30 minutes to prep and cook the entire meal.)

Sweet Chili Sauce
Vegan; Serves 4

(Before I started cleaning the veggies, I prepped the sauce. I put all of the ingredients {except the liquids} in a bowl and set aside until I put the tofu and veggies in the pan. I wanted the sauce and the tofu to be done at about the same time.)

3 Tbs red curry paste (hot ground-I went with a red curry paste, since the chili paste had shrimp.)
2 tsps minced garlic
1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
2/3 cup water
1/3 cup sugar (I used a little over 1/3 cup, and could have cut it to the 1/3 cup)
1 tsp salt
4 tsps cornstarch
4 tbsps chopped cilantro

1. Combine everything, except cilantro, in a small sauce pan and mix.
2. Once blended, bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer about 5 minutes.
3. Remove from heat and stir in cilantro.

Beer Battered Tofu & Veggies
Vegan; Serves 4
1 (14 oz) package of drained extra firm tofu
1 (12 oz) can cheap beer (I used a blond lager)
1 1/2 cups flour (I used 1 cup of whole wheat, and 1/2 cup of all purpose)
1 1/2 cups cornmeal
1 Tbs garlic pepper seasoning (I used a roasted red bell pepper with garlic)
1/2 Tbs oregano and 1/2 Tbs of thyme (I put both in 1 Tbs. measuring spoon)
1/4 teaspoon salt (I used a little less)
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
3/4 cup canola oil
Use veggies you have on hand, I used asparagus and baby portobello mushrooms. Sweet potato and zucchini would be great, too.....

1. Mix beer and flour in a bowl until you have a thin batter. Sometimes this uses more or less flour. Just adjust until it looks like a thin pancake batter.
2. On a large plate, mix remaining 6 ingredients.
3. Cut tofu into 1/4 inch thick slices. Clean/cut veggies (I left the mushrooms whole and cut the asparagus "butt" ends off.)
4. Heat oil in heavy skillet or cast iron pan. Carefully dip slices of tofu in beer batter shaking off the excess. Place in cornmeal mixture and tap each side to get coating to stick.
5. Place in hot oil and fry until golden about 3 minutes each side. Remove from pan and place on paper towels to drain.
6. Serve with sweet chili sauce, and enjoy!

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