Wednesday, June 12, 2013

summer is here: teriyaki tofu bowls with pineapple salsa

There's a great little restaurant just off the Duke campus, Madhatters, which makes delicious breakfast, lunch and pastries.  It's a mellow place where she can find something good to eat and a quiet place to study.  Both years it's been in easy walking distance.  Plus it's in the same center as Whole Foods, so if Sara chooses it over WF's amazing hot bar (astonishing if the only WF hot bar you have ever seen is the one here in Carmel).  Last weekend it was sunny and warm and as we sat by the pool, I decided to look up their menu for some wrap or salad ideas.  Sara reminded me that she's had this wrap so many times I probably didn't need to look it up.  At home we made her favorite wrap sandwich it into a bowl because 1.we like bowls, 2. we didn't have spinach flour tortillas and 3. wraps are hard to wrap unless you get the grande tortillas.  It's easier than it looks all written out here.  Don't let the lists intimidate you.  You can make the salsa ahead, but I like to just chop and keep chopping.  You can make the roasted vegetables ahead (I grilled them the day before to use for whatever, again when I'm grilling I might as well keep grilling and use the entire grilling surface).  You can even make the ginger rice in advance and then all you have to do is reheat the rice and tofu (room temperature will be fine for everything) and assemble you bowl.  I am sure Greg would have this with Siracha.  Give it a try.

Teriyaki Tofu Bowls with Pineapple Salsa

one package firm or extra firm tofu, drained and pressed
1 C Soy Vay Island Teriyaki marinade (any teriyaki sauce including home made will do)

ginger rice
1 C brown jasmine rice
1 1/2 C vegetable broth
1 T grated fresh ginger

pineapple salsa
2 C small diced pineapple
1 small red onion, finely chopped
1 jalapeƱo, seeds removed, minced
1/4 C chopped cilantro leaves
juice of one lime
1/2 tsp salt

melange of roasted or grilled vegetables, diced
(zucchini or other squash, onion, red pepper, etc.)

fresh baby spinach leaves
Siracha, optional

Marinate tofu in a ziploc bag for at least 30 minutes.  Heat a little canola or soy oil in a skillet over medium high heat and brown tofu on all sides (about 3-5 minutes per side).

Make ginger rice by adding rice and broth to a saucepan and grate the fresh ginger over the rice.  Bring to a boil, stir, reduce heat to simmer, cover and cook for 20 minutes.  Let rest with lid on (check and make sure it's tender and cook a little longer if not).

Make salsa by combining all ingredients and tasting for salt and lime.  Cover and chill in the refrigerator.

Grill or roast vegetables with a little olive oil and kosher salt.  I have a cast iron griddle kind of pan from Crate and Barrel that I heat up as my grill heats up and I just throw on the vegetables and toss or flip them to roast over medium heat for about 10-12 minutes.

Make all these things in an order that's logical for you.  Put your bowls together with things how you like them,  hot, warm or chilled.

salsa ingredients

you can chop things finer, we are good with chunky

grilled/roasted vegetables
grating ginger over brown jasmine rice
finished ginger rice
marinated tofu hitting the pan
all done

my bowl

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

grab a spoon: little peanut butter cups in a jar

I have had this tab open on my computer since April just waiting for Sara to be home to give it a try.  Finally made it last week and now we feel like we missed out on a whole month of enjoying the silky peanut butter goodness.  This is a very cute little treat made in little glass canning jars or ramekins which is a presentation seen everywhere.  I'm thinking that's a phenomenon we can attribute to Pinterest.  You'll see our first batch was made in an assortment of jars.  We loved these so much I bought six pretty little 6-ounce Weck canning jars (love them with the flat glass lids, gaskets and clips very low-tech) from Crate and Barrel.  Now they'll be stackable in the fridge for chilling.  Pretty sure the stack will get short rather quickly.  Yum.  You could just make the filling and bust out a spoon, but try to save it for the assembled dessert.   This is quick to put together with a food processor, but you could crush your graham crackers in a ziploc bag and then just stir the crust ingredients together.  The filling could just be whisked together.  Oh right, forgot to mention that the filling is silken tofu.  Don't tell anyone, they'll never ever guess.  Silken tofu is found on the shelf in aseptic packaging at Trader Joe's (and elsewhere  I am sure).  It's also sold in traditional tubs in the refrigerated section.  You choose.  You'll only use 2/3 of the typical container, so at some point I need to adjust this recipe so you can just use the entire container of tofu (plus you'll have more dessert which is always a good thing).

Little Peanut Butter Cups in a Jar

10 squares of graham crackers (enough to make a heaping 1/2 cup of crumbs)
1 1/2 T pure maple syrup
1 T coconut oil, melted
2 1/2 tsp cocoa powder (unsweetened)

200 g silken tofu, roughly chopped (just falls apart into rough pieces)
1/4 C natural peanut butter
3-5 T confectioner's sugar or 1/2 C brown or raw sugar processed into powder
1 T almond milk
1 tsp vanilla (skip if using vanilla almond milk like I did)
pinch of salt to taste (mine did not need it)

chocolate shell
3 T semi sweet or dark chocolate chips (or  milk chocolate, whatever you like)
1 1/2 tsp coconut oil

If processing brown or raw sugar into powder use a blender or food processor at high speed and set aside.

In a food processor, process all crust ingredients until blended.  Add 2 T crust to each jar (really this depends on your jar, just divide equally into 4 or 6 jars) and press into bottoms.

Wipe out food processor bowl and process filling ingredients until silky smooth, scraping sides as needed.

Divide filling equally between jars (3 T or so, don't measure just spoon it out).  Chill jars uncovered in freezer for 30 minutes.

Remove jars from freezer and melt chocolate and coconut oil over low heat on stove or in microwave on medium power for 30 seconds at a time.  Spoon a tablespoon or so on top of the filling in each jar, swirling to coat (might be easy with the lids on).  Chill in the refrigerator to set (chocolate will set quickly on top of cold filling), or just dig in!


processed crust

crust in assorted jars

filling in jars