Spicy Peanut Tofu Bowl with Coconut Forbidden Rice
Spicy peanut tofu pairs with forbidden coconut rice and bok choy for a hearty and nourishing weeknight meal. For meal prep, cook the rice up to three days in advance and marinate the tofu up one day in advance. The time below does not include tofu pressing and marinating. vegan + gluten free
In a medium sauce pan, add the rice, coconut milk, water and salt. Bring to a boil, cover and turn heat to low. Cook for 40 minutes with lid on. Start checked at about 35 minutes to make sure the rice is not sticking. If it is, give it a stir and put the lid back on. Remove from heat and let stand, covered, for 10 minutes.
For the Tofu:
Preheat the oven to 350F (180C). Slice the tofu into 1" cubes and place on a parchment or silpat lined sheet pan. Bake for 20 minutes. This will dry the tofu out.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl whisk the maple syrup, tamari, oil, sriracha, peanut butter, garlic and ginger. Whisk to combine the marinade. Stir in the baked tofu and marinate for at least 10 minutes (30 if you can).
Warm a medium non-stick saute pan on medium heat with 1 Tbs of sesame oil. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the tofu to the pan. Some of the marinade will transfer to the pan, most of it should stay in the bowl. Cook tofu on medium heat, allowing it to get a little crispy with some crust forming from the marinade. Cook the tofu until crispy and warmed through, stirring and tossing occassionally. About 5-8 minutes. Keep warm. Leftover marinade can be frozen to be used again. Or, gently warm it and use it as a sauce to slather over the tofu just before serving.
For the Bok Choy:
Slice the bok choy, lengthwise, in half. In a nonstick pan, add 1 Tbs of sesame oil, swirl it around in the pan and heat until shimmering. Place the bok choy in the pan, flat side down. Cook for 2 minutes, flip, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Add 2 Tbs water to the pan and put a lid on for about 30 seconds to wilt the bok choy. Remove from heat and keep warm.
Assemble the Bowls:
Divide the rice, tofu and bok choy between bowls and garnish with cashews, lime wedges and basil. Refrigerate leftovers in a covered container for up to three days.
Freeze your tofu when you bring it home from the store. Thaw it in the refrigerator overnight, then press out the water. Something magical happens in the freezer. Since tofu is packaged in water, we need press the water out of it to make room for flavor! To press thawed tofu, use a tea towel and place it under and on top of the tofu. Set it on a plate. Place something heavy on top, like a cutting board, another plate or a not-so-full box of wine to press the water out. We don't want it too heavy or it will squash the tofu. Move the tea towel a few times to a dryer area of the towel so it can absorb more water. Press for about 20-30 minutes, up to an hour if you have time.Marinade recipe adapted from my Thai Lentil Lettuce Wraps.