Thursday, January 15, 2009

Bean Curd Casserole on Soba Noodles

**This is not a gluten-free recipe and was posted before I eliminated gluten from my diet. Substitute brown rice pasta for the soba noodles for a gluten-free meal.**

tofu casserole on soba noodles with lots of vegetables, adapted from Practical Cooking: Wok and Stir-fry
I've been dying to try out some of the recipes from a book called Practical Cooking: Wok and Stir-fry that I picked up at a used bookstore in Tallahassee. I haven't done much Asian cooking, but it's something that I want to add to my repertoire. Instead of picking a recipe and buying the ingredients, I tried to find a recipe that included things I already had (or could substitute). That's not usually how I do things, but it worked ok this time.

Bean Curd Casserole (adapted from "Practical Cooking: Wok and Stir-fry")

1 lb tofu (ideally use firm, but all I had was silken)
2 Tbsp peanut oil
1 bunch green onions, sliced
3 small zucchini, sliced thinly
1 small head napa cabbage, shredded
5 oz baby spinach
8 oz baby bella mushrooms, sliced
2 cups vegetable broth
2 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp honey (or agave nectar)
1/2 tsp chili powder
1 Tbsp toasted sesame oil

Cube/crumble tofu and set aside. Heat peanut oil over medium-high heat in skillet, add vegetables and tofu, and cook for 3-4 minutes. Mix remaining ingredients in saucepan and bring to a boil. Add sauce to vegetables, reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes. Serves 4-5.

It turned out with a good flavor, but it was very saucy (almost to the point of soup). I'm not sure if that's because I adjusted the veggies in this recipes (it originally called for green onions, celery, broccoli, zucchini, and spinach), didn't use firm tofu, or what. After I scooped the veggies and tofu out of the sauce, it had a good, albeit subtle, flavor. Next time I would definitely get firm tofu.

I was excited to serve this on soba noodles because the ones I've had in restaurants have been delicious. I wasn't keen on the flavor of these, though. They were made with buckwheat and yam, and perhaps I need to try the pure buckwheat ones. I'm not sure of the brand, but here's the package. I would avoid them.

soba noodles

I was in a flustered mood when I made this, and that may not have been the best time to try out a new cuisine. It went fairly well in the end, and I'm excited to try out more recipes from this book.

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