Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Asparagus and Pesto Tofu Scramble

After stocking my fridge with a full batch of radish pesto yesterday, I have been cooking up a delicious pesto storm!

Trying to be more creative than my usual "pesto pasta with zucchini," I decided to use the zippy radish pesto in this complimentary tofu and asparagus dish because I knew would result in a great meal AND great lunch leftovers (I pack my mom's lunches for her. Sometimes I label them for the day of the week. We have a pretty good thing going on in our household).

Tofu is a great base to use when cooking with strong herbs or sauces like pesto because of its ability to absorb and disseminate all those lovely flavors. I am one of those freaks who loves to eat plain tofu straight out of the container (and do, frequently) but if you are just beginning to experiment with it or if you are cooking for a non-believer, use something flavorful like a pesto to help you ease into the glorious world of tofu.

Asparagus and Pesto Tofu Scramble
  • 1 block tofu, cut into small cubes
  • 2 tsp vegetable oil
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 1/2 lb asparagus, chopped
  • 4-6oz crimini mushrooms, sliced thinly
  • salt/pepper/garlic powder/paprika/italian seasoning - to taste (about 2 tsp total I would say)
  • 2 Tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 head rainbow chard or other greens, chopped (mine came from the garden - yay!)
  • 1 recipe garden-fresh radish pesto
Start by dry-frying your tofu in a smaller NON-STICK pan. Bring pan up to temperature over medium heat and toss in your tofu (no need for oil or fat source here; that's why it's called dry-frying). Lightly cook the tofu on each side until golden brown.

Meanwhile, in a larger fry pan, bring your veggie oil (I used grapeseed) up to temperature over medium-low heat. Toss in your onions and saute them for 2-3 minutes before adding the asparagus and mushrooms. Continue to saute for another 5-6 minutes before adding in the tofu.

You want to add in your spices and nutritional yeast right after you add in the tofu to allow them to toast up before you add in the pesto for maximum flavor enhancement. Continue to cook for another 3-4 minutes.

As soon as the asparagus is cooked evenly - not too soggy and not too stringy - toss in your greens, spices, nutritional yeast and pesto and give the whole thing a good stir.

Cover the pan and continue to cook for another 4 minutes or until the greens are wilted!

Serve right on up and enjoy!

Live long and prosper! And don't fear tofu!

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