Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Recipes to Keep You Running: Asian Slaw with Tofu Triangles

I'd like to occasionally share some of my favorite recipes with you guys as we go along. As a vegetarian runner, I'm constantly looking for new ways to incorporate protein into my diet while at the same time trying to lower fat and amplify taste. If you have any recipes to share, feel free to comment! You may see one of them featured in a post at a later date.

This recipe for asian slaw is adapted from a salad recipe in the May issue of Fitness magazine. It's fairly healthy from a calorie and fat standpoint. It's loaded with veggies and tofu. It is a little high in salt, though, so make sure to watch your sodium intake on the days you make/eat this. This slaw is also an interesting alternative to traditional coleslaws, and a great dish to bring to those Memorial Day cookouts this weekend.

Asian Slaw with Tofu Triangles

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 50 minutes

1/3 c. low sodium tamari
3 tbs. rice wine vinegar (I eyeballed this as well as the measurements for the honey and oils)
1 tbs. seasame oil
1 tbs. peanut oil (or canola oil if you don't have peanut)
2 tbs. honey
1 tbs. minced ginger (I just cut a chunk off of a ginger root and minced it)
2 or 3 minced garlic cloves

2 14 oz packages of firm or extra firm tofu

3 tbs. seasame seeds, toasted
2 c. sugar snap peas
6 c. shredded cabbage
1 red bell pepper, sliced
1 c. shredded carrot
1 bunch chopped scallions

1. Slice the tofu into half inch strips, and cut each strip diagonally to form triangles. Cook the triangles in a non-stick pan over low heat. This method is called "dry frying." No oil is required, but it is important that the heat stays low and that your pan is nonstick. When the tofu begins to turn light brown and "dry out," on one side, it's time to flip it and cook the other side. Another way to tell if one side is done is to try to move the piece around in the pan. If it moves, it's ready to be flipped. This takes about 30 to 40 mins.

2. While the tofu is in the pan, whisk the soy sauce, oils, honey, ginger and garlic together in a small bowl. Set aside.

3. Bring a small pot of water to boil on the stove. Add the peas and blanch for 2 minutes. Then drain and rinse under cold water. Set aside.

4. When the tofu is light brown on both sides, remove from the heat. Place in a small baking dish and pour half of the dressing over the triangles. Marinate for at least 10 minutes.

5. Toss the cabbage, red bell pepper, sugar snap peas, carrots, and scallions together with the remainder of the dressing. Sprinkle sesame seeds over the slaw.

6. You can serve the slaw with the triangles on the side, or put the triangles in the slaw. When I took this to a gathering last night, I tossed the triangles and their "marinade" in with the rest of the slaw for a one-bowl meal, but if you're serving at home, you may want to leave the triangles separate and have people serve themselves.

What I like about this recipe is that it can be customized in many ways. You can substitute snow peas or add edamame. You can top with crushed peanuts. You can even make this a more traditional "oriental salad" and add crushed, dried ramen noodles.

I hope you enjoy!

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