If you don’t become the ocean, you’ll be seasick everyday. Leonard Cohen
As I mentioned in last week’s newsletter, when I’m not well stocked with pre-cooked legumes, I like to keep a selection of easy to cook tofu or tempeh in the fridge, for when the mood strikes, or for just when dinner needs to happen fast and I’m just not prepared. This past weekend, I visited my parents at their homestead on Gabriola Island, and after three full days away, I arrived back home midday (fresh from a seaplane ride I might add!), starving. I was craving comfort food and took a quick peek inside the fridge, and was so pleased to find two blocks of tofu happily sitting there waiting for me. With that happy discovery, and a little more foraging through the cupboards and the crisper, I was off to the races for a dead simple and ultimately satisfying home-cooked meal.
This recipe is so incredibly adaptable in terms of actual amounts of the ingredients you use, though it’s hard to say whether there are any ingredients in this marinade I would say aren’t necessary. They are all so good! Play with the measurements of sriracha and ketchup you use (I mostly freestyle this recipe), but be careful not to splash too much soy sauce or Bragg’s, or you’ll likely end up with a tofu-textured salt festival. But, we’ve all been there at some point before, haven’t we?
I often make this baked tofu just to have in the fridge for the week, since it is not only fantastic hot out of the oven, it makes a great cold snack or add-on to a salad too. It never lasts long here in our house, and I usually always wish I had made more. I served it here with buckwheat soba noodles and quick stir-fried green veggies. I always add an extra splash of sesame oil (because I adore it!), and top with toasted sesame seeds. Perfection!
Everyday Baked Tofu:
1 pound firm tofu, cubed
2 tbsp ketchup
2 tbsp sriracha
1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
1/2 tsp crushed chili flakes, optional
1 tbsp soy sauce, or Bragg’s Liquid Aminos
1 tbsp sesame oil, more to taste
1-2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Add the cubed tofu to a mixing bowl, and add the ketchup, sriracha, sesame oil, chili flakes, and soy sauce. Toss gently to coat evenly with your hands. Lay flat on a lightly oiled baking tray and add to the 400-degree oven. Bake for 25-30 minutes, tossing gently every 10 minutes or so to ensure cooking on all sides. This will also keep the marinade from burning in the pan (and instead of ending up cooked onto the tofu where you want it). When the tofu is evenly cooked on most sides, and are turning brown, remove from the oven. Transfer to a mixing bowl and garnish with additional sesame oil and toasted sesame seeds.
Serve as seen here with buckwheat soba noodles, and broccoli and peas stir-fried in sesame oil. Makes approximately 2 servings, and this recipe can easily be doubled! In fact, I recommend it. You’ll likely wish you had more once it’s gone 😉