Crispy, Sticky Sesame Tofu
I had myself at crispy! Tofu is no longer just for hipsters with scraggly beards and a penchant for ‘artisan coffee’ – as if a cup of coffee in a bohemian cafe really tastes better than in a franchise restaurant (except the Spur – their coffee is made from stale grounds and broken dreams).
Even so, it is still viewed with suspicion – condensed soy milk? Why would you? Well, why would you grill what was once a living, breathing animal…but you know, potato potahto.
I’d say tofu is enjoying a bit of a renaissance, but that would mean it was once on the up and that would be giving it too much credit. More accurately, it is slowly becoming mainstream. Blame it on the vegans, or maybe it’s growing awareness of the environmental impact of beef farming – either way, tofu is having a shining moment in all its slightly spongy glory. Incidentally, this sponginess is what makes tofu so adaptable, as it soaks up the flavour of any dish that you add it to.
I’ve blogged a recipe for crispy tofu before but this one is next level – because sticky sesame sauce. This is my new ‘let me impress you with my plant based cooking skills’ dish, so get in touch if you want to come for dinner!
Crispy, Sticky Sesame Tofu
- Half a 350g block of firm tofu (smoked or plain), drained* and cut into 1cm wide strips
- 150g cornflour and spices for coating (I used paprika, chilli, salt and mixed herbs)
- Olive oil for cooking
- Half a head of broccoli
- 1 pack baby pak choy
- Wild rice, cooked and drained
- 2 oranges or 4 naartjies (mandarin orange or tangerine to you international folks)
- 2 tbsp water
- 3 tbsp soya sauce
- 1 tbsp sriracha (can use other chilli sauce)
- 2 tsp sesame seeds
*To drain tofu, wrap the block in a clean kitchen towel and place it between two plates or weighted objects. Let it sit for half an hour.
- Mix the cornflour and spices together in a bowl. Lay the tofu strips on a board and shake the cornflour mix over them. Use tongs to turn them and shake more cornflour over until the strips are coated on all sides. Make sure the coating is thick as this will give it the crunchy texture.
- Fry the tofu strips in olive oil until they turn golden brown and crispy on all sides.
- In the meantime, make the sticky sauce by juicing your citrus fruit and adding the juice to the soya sauce, water and sriracha.
- Remove the tofu from the pan and clean the pan with paper towel – this prevents everything from sticking and burning. Place tofu back in the pan and pour the sauce over. Cook on low heat for 4-5 minutes.
- In a separate pan, saute the pak choy and broccoli in olive oil until just cooked. Don’t add flavouring as the veggies will be covered in the sticky sauce.
- Serve up bowls of wild rice, topped with pak choy and broccoli and finally the sticky tofu strips. Drizzle sesame seeds over the top and enjoy!