Spicy Tofu Bowl
Event: Sunday Funday
Recipe: Spicy Tofu Bowl
Spicy Tofu Bowl is a healthy, delicious and easy recipe where I serve spicy tofu with salad ingredients and nuts with a light sesame seed dressing. This bowl is perfect as a light meal, for picnics, for lunch boxes or to serve it as a side to a main Chinese meal. And it is completely vegan and gluten free.
Tofu is not an ingredient I’ve grown up with. As a kid had no idea that a food ingredient tofu existed. That changed when Bangkok Chinese Restaurant, Nairobi first introduced it on their menu. During one family meal at the restaurant, the owner sent some stir fried tofu to our table to taste. Some didn’t like it but I loved it. Different from paneer in taste and texture, I couldn’t wait to order some on our next meal there.
Unfortunately, after offering the people of Kenya, authentic, delicious Chinese food, the restaurant closed down. I will always remember their salt and pepper vegetables… I could finish the whole plate on my own.
Back then it was not easy to find tofu in the supermarkets. Only some good Chinese Restaurants serve it. Recent times, it is easy to find it in the shops in Nairobi but not Mombasa.
Fast forward to now.. I am living in Magog, Quebec and get so spoiled with the choice of tofu available in the supermarkets.. soft, medium, firm,marinated, etc.
By the way, Sunday Funday is a group of Food Bloggers. Every Sunday we share some fun, traditional, hearty or easy recipes to make Sunday Family Meals a bit more exciting. To join this fun group, visit the Sunday Funday Facebook Page. Request to join in.
Sneha who blogs at Sneha’s Recipes suggested we use sprouts for this week’s theme. With the days being really hot, I opted for a lighter but nutritious meal with sprouts – Spicy Tofu Bowl. While the salad ingredients are not that filling, tofu is not only a good source of protein especially for those who follow a vegetarian or vegan diet but is a filling ingredient.
Sprouts are very young plants that are harvested just a few days after they germinate. In a broader term, we have bean sprouts, grain sprouts, seed sprouts. Sprouts can be enjoyed raw, slightly stir fried or steamed. Add them to soups, salads, meals, etc. I like to sprout mung beans at home for salads, main meals, curries, etc. However, for Chinese dishes I prefer to buy ready sprouted beans as they succulent and enjoyable.
Some Recipes With Sprouts
Moong Paniyaram – I like to use sprouted moong for the batter and also to add some whole ones.
Chinese Bhel – a fusion snack, where I love adding moong sprouts.
Winter Crunchy Salad – with beetroot, bean sprouts, tomatoes, etc.
Moong Sprout Salad – I enjoy raw home sprouted moong beans with pineapple and potatoes.
Another favourite of mine is this popular Maharashtrian street food Misal Pav. The curry made from sprouted moong or dew beans with chutneys and bread.
Sprouted Moth And Spinach Pudla are crepe like which can be enjoyed for breakfast or with a curry as a main meal.
Summer Salad where I’ve used dragon fruit, semi ripe mango topped with sunflower seed sprouts.
Check Out How Fellow Members Have Used Sprouts
Chinese Cuban Fried Rice from Karen’s Kitchen Stories
Korean Banchan (Bean Sprout, Pickled Radish and Cucumber) from Palatable Pastime
Masala papad with sprouted moth bean chaat from Mildly Indian
Mahahrastrian Misal Pav from Sneha’s Recipe
Quick and Easy Pork Pho from A Day in the Life on the Farm
Spicy Tofu Bowl from Mayuri’s Jikoni
Sprouted Wheat Bread (Wet Sprouted – No Dehydrating or Grain Mill from Amy’s Cooking Adventures
Tomato and Sunflower Sprout Salad from Pandemonium Noshery
The Goan Usali Recipe from The Mad Scientist’s Kitchen
Ingredients Required For Spicy Tofu Bowl
For Spicy Tofu
- Tofu – firm is better for marination.
- Garlic – peeled and minced.
- Ginger – peeled, grated or minced.
- Soy Sauce – dark or light.
- Chilli Sauce – any of your choice. I have used Schezwan Sauce.
- Salt – add according to your taste.
- Sesame Oil – or any other oil of your choice.
- Rice Vinegar – preferably or any good quality vinegar.
- Sugar/Honey/Maple Syrup – use any of your choice. Can use normal granulated sugar or brown sugar. I have used maple syrup.
- Cornstarch or Rice Flour
For The Salad
Use whichever salad ingredients you want to. The given list below is just a suggestion of what you can use.
- Baby Pak Choy – best suited for salads as it does not need to be cooked. Finely chopped.
- Snow Peas – Trim the ends. Blanch in hot water.
- Bell Pepper – any colour of your choice. Cut into long strips.
- Carrot – peeled and cut into strips.
- Bean Sprouts – I have used a cup per bowl.
- Spring Onion – finely chopped, both the white and green part.
- Roasted Almonds – or any nuts of your choice, like peanuts, cashew nuts, etc.
For The Sesame Seed Dressing:
- Sesame Seed Oil |Olive Oil – some sesame seed oils have a strong flavour. You can mix a bit of sesame and olive oil if you want to.
- Rice Vinegar – or any good quality vinegar.
- Soy Sauce – light or dark.
- Maple Syrup | Honey |Sugar – use whichever you prefer.
- Garlic – minced
- Ginger – minced or grated.
- Salt -add according to your taste.
- Black Pepper Powder – add according to your taste.
- Red Chilli Flakes – add according to your taste.
- Sesame Seeds – lightly roasted.
Watch How To Make Spicy Tofu Bowls
SPICY TOFU BOWL
FOR THE SPICY TOFU
- 250 g firm tofu
- 1 tbsp garlic minced
- 1 tsp ginger paste
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 2 tbsp sesame oil
- 1 tbsp chilli sauce
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 tbsp rice vinegar
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- 2 tbsp cornstarch
FOR THE SALAD BOWL
- 2 cups baby pak choy finely chopped
- 2 medium carrots
- 1 large bell pepper any colour
- 100 g snow peas approx. 1 cup
- 2 cups bean sprouts
- ½ cup spring onion chopped
- ½ cup almonds roasted and chopped
FOR THE SESAME SEED DRESSING
- 2 tbsp sesame/olive oil
- 1 tbsp rice vinegar
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- ½ tbsp maple syrup
- ½ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp garlic minced
- ¼ tsp ginger minced or grated
- ¼ tsp black pepper powder
- ¼ tsp red chilli flakes
- 1 tbsp sesame seeds roasted
- extra sesame seeds topping
- PREPARATION OF SPICY TOFU
- Preheat the oven to 200°C. Line a baking tray with parchment paper.
- Cover the tofu slab with a kitchen paper towel so that it soaks up the moisture.
- Leave it for 10 mins.
- In the meantime, get the marination ready.
- Take a wide bowl. Add ginger, garlic, soy sauce, vinegar, maple syrup, oil, chilli sauce and salt.
- Mix it well.
- Cut the tofu into bite size cubes.
- Add it to the marination sauce. Gently mix it so the sauce coats all of the tofu pieces.
- Add cornstarch or rice flour. Toss the tofu.
- Arrange the tofu pieces on the prepared tray in a single layer.
- Bake the tofu for 15 minutes.
- Remove the tray and turn all the tofu pieces.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes.
- Remove the tray from the oven. Remove the tofu from the tray.
- Brush the remaining sauce on the tofu pieces.
PREPARATION OF THE SESAME SEED DRESSING:
- Mix all the sesame seed dressing ingredients in a bowl.
- Keep it on the side till required.
PREPARATION OF THE SALAD:
- Peel and cut the carrots into thin strips.
- Cut the bell pepper into thin strips.
- Wash the pak choy and wipe them dry with a kitchen towel. Chop it finely.
- Put some water to boil in a saucepan.
- In the meantime, trim the ends of the snow peas.
- Keep a bowl of ice water ready.
- Add the snow peas to the boiling water. Allow them to blanch for 2-3 minutes.
- Remove the snow peas from the water using a slotted spoon and put them in the ice water. This stops the cooking process.
- I prefer to wash the bean sprouts under cold water to remove any bacteria. Place them in a colander or sieve and wash. Allow the water to drain out completely.
PREPARATION OF SPICY TOFU BOWLS
- Divide and arrange the salad ingredients, bean sprouts, spicy tofu and almonds in two wide bowls.
- Drizzle the salad dressing over it and serve immediately.
- Add salad ingredients of your choice like broccoli, cucumber, radish, onion, etc.
- Make sure you use firm tofu as the medium one can crumble when marinated.
- If you don't want to bake the tofu, then pan fry them. Make sure you keep tossing the tofu frequently otherwise it can stick to the pan.
- I made a mistake of using aluminum foil.. parchment paper or silicon mat works better.
- Add spices to the marinade according to your taste. Can add minced onion too.
- Mix all the ingredients if you are carrying the salad for a potluck. Add the dressing later.
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