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CRISPY, SPICY CRUMBLED TOFU – AKA HOW TO MAKE TOFU TASTE LIKE MEAT October 14 2017

Your relationship with those humdrum blocks of tofu is about to change, my friends.

I had a somewhat spicy fling with tofu in the past, but the balance of our infrequent exchanges was admittedly "meh." Besides cutting the tofu into cubes and marinating it for a length of time that never seemed to be worth the final flavour result, I wasn't really in love. The only person who looked forward to eating tofu was my girl. Her, I love.

A few months back, I ran across a method for how to make your tofu taste like pork. Such a bold claim, I thought. Skeptical but curious, I read on... aaaaaand then bookmarked it for another day.

Well, "another day" happened to be one when I woke up feeling less than stellar. I pulled myself together enough to get the kids off to school (while I kept my miserable state confined to my car) and decided I was due for a sick day.

When I'm unwell, I don't just crave soup: I crave spicy soup. But also a strong hot toddy with lemon and bourbon, just not at the same time ;P

I remembered that enticing spicy crumbled tofu from before and called up the original post. Too lazy to follow all the steps, I gleaned a coles notes version of the process and gave it go while I was waiting for my miso soup broth to achieve its full germ-banishing potency.

I wasn't convinced this crumbled mess of tofu would even remotely resemble ground pork until about the 20-minute mark. Yep. It takes time and a little more oil than I anticipated to achieve that dark, crumbly, crispy-yet-slightly-chewy taste and texture of well-cooked ground pork. The soy sauce and sesame oil definitely help the tofu look much less anemic, and the result was nothing short of remarkable.

About the same time this culinary miracle was finished, so was my miso soup. A few ramen noodles and a well-placed egg later, I reached the pinnacle of satisfyingly spicy, soul-lifting, virus-blasting comfort food. With a gratifying stir to combine the crisp, peppery bites of tofu with the smooth miso broth and I'm in heaven.

Funnily enough, the next time I made and shared a photo of this tofu revelation, again served specifically with my cheater miso ramen soup, it was August. You'd think that posting something like this during the heat of summer would tame the response, but it didn't, and I think that's pretty amazing.

Thanks for reading and I hope you'll keep in touch on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest for frequent foodie fixes.

Eat well,

Gayle

 

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Crispy, Spicy Crumbled Tofu
Say goodbye to boring tofu. This method of cooking tofu is heavily inspired by Bon Appetit and transforms a rather drab block of tofu into something remarkably resembling meat.
Ingredients
  • 4 tbsp + more if needed neutral oil
  • 350 g extra firm tofu
  • 3 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp or to taste sambal oelek
Instructions
Prepare the block of tofu by wrapping in several layers of paper towels or clean tea towels and squeeze to remove as much moisture as possible. I usually set it on the counter and lean with both hands on top of the block a few times. It will begin to crumble, which is perfect.Meanwhile, heat a neutral oil such as grapeseed or avocado oil over high heat in a non-stick wok or skillet until shimmering. Add the crumbled tofu to the hot oil and stir immediately to coat the tofu in the oil, breaking up larger pieces with a wooden spoon. Now shake the pan and let fry without disturbing it for a couple of minutes to allow the tofu a chance to brown. If you feel like the pan is too dry, add a little more oil throughout the process. Keep frying and stirring occasionally until the tofu is darker in colour. It should resemble cooked ground pork at this point.Add the soy sauce, sesame oil, and sambal oelek; stir-fry for a few more minutes until the tofu is well browned. Remove from heat and use immediately, or store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week.
Worth noting: If you are at all interested... this cooking method works perfectly to make a Tex-Mex style filling for taco or to add to our Vegetarian Chili. Swap out the soy and sesame oil for taco seasoning and a couple tablespoons of water. This homemade seasoning is delicious.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 4

 

 


The Kids Are Going Baaaack! August 06 2015

{5 Tips for a Healthy & Litterless Lunch PLUS a GIVEAWAY}

Whether the thought of the kids going back to school makes you jump for joy or cringe at the thought, there's no question a little preparation and planning makes the first few weeks of new routines run smoother.

Putting together healthy AND tasty school lunches can be a challenge. I find sending a hot lunch to school is easiest and my kids love having a warm comforting meal like chicken noodle soup or turkey chili. I'd like to share with you a few easy meal ideas, serving tips and our favourite healthy snack recipes to make feeding your family healthy food on the go a little easier.

1) Stock up on ready to heat soups & sauces.

Whether you make your own or you plan on a delivery from The Soup Solution - now's the time! Our products can be defrosted and stored in the fridge up to 2 weeks (unopened) for fast easy meals at your finger tips. A lifesaver when busy schedules get the best of you.

2) Invest in good quality reusable food containers.

We love our Thermos® food jars! They are easy to fill, easy to clean and even have a spoon nestled in the lid. These jars have never let us down - food stays hot for hours. We also love sturdy *leak-proof* containers like these ones from sistema®, and stainless steel containers like these made by Onyx. Having a stock of easy to use containers in various sizes is essential when packing a portable and litterless lunch. We have used all of these products and give them 5/5 spoons! Our neighbourhood London Drugs has a fantastic selection of these containers as well as practical lunch bags to pack them in.

3) Have pre-cooked pasta ready to go.

Our Bolognese Sauce and Alfredo Sauce are a huge hit with kids, and when you have pre-cooked pasta handy, lunch is made before you've finished your morning coffee! Keep leftover pasta in smaller portions in the freezer. Simply drop in boiling water for a few seconds and it's ready to go. You can also add cooked pasta to soups like our Fresh Tomato & Basil Bisque. We love Duso's Sunrise Mini 4-Cheese Ravioli or try cute alphabet shaped pasta for a fun spoonful. Adding whole grain pasta is always a great idea!

4) Use that leftover rice.

When there are after school sports and activities on the schedule, kids need a hearty, nutritious meal to power through their busy days. Try serving a generous scoop of cooked brown rice with our Butter Chicken Soup, Mexican Chicken Soup, Thai Curried Chicken Soup or any one of our chilis topped with shredded cheese. Our Southwestern Corn Chowder over rice is a delicious vegetarian option.

5) Keep the processed and individually packaged snacks to a minimum.

Now that you have all the great reusable containers, it's easy to send snacks like apple sauce, yogurt and crackers without creating more waste using individual pre-packaged portions. Make a batch of this protein-rich Miso Hummus in minutes and serve with vegetable sticks or whole grain naan. Having a freezer stash of homemade snacks makes packing lunches a breeze. Our favourite healthy snack recipes are Whole Wheat Carrot Apple Muffins and Nut-Free Protein Brownie Bites. Easy to make, low in sugar and most importantly, kid-approved. 

 

Get an A+ in Lunch this year! 

    Giveaway ($60 Value): We love our Thermos® Food jars so much, we wanted to share them with you. To enter the draw, simply place a qualifying order ($150 minimum and a delivery address within Greater Vancouver) via our website before September 1st, 2015. That's it! Once your payment and order details are confirmed, you will automatically be entered. The winner will be randomly drawn and notified via email on September 2nd, 2015. Good luck!

    Eat well,

    Gayle

    Have some great ideas to share? I'd love to hear from you! Leave a comment below or email me at info@thesoupsolution.ca. Don't forget to to join me on social media for more tips and recipes! 


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