Hello everyone! I can’t believe that Christmas is only five days away. Let me tell you, it does not feel like the end of December. Christmas break is always a fun and relaxing time, but I always kinda miss a routine. I am definitely not missing having reading to do!
This recipe was adapted from Sarah Coates, at The Sugar Hit. As you know, I have been trying to eat less meat. With this recipe for crispy, marinated tofu, you hardly miss the chicken its supposed to have! This recipe is a bit involved, but I think that it is one of the best things that I have ever made, so it is definitely worth it.
For the tofu:
- 1 brick tofu, extra firm (15.5 ounces)
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- Salt and pepper to taste
For the pickled onions:
- 1/2 medium red onion
- 1/4 cup vinegar (I used rice vinegar because that is what I had, but you could use rice, distilled, or apple cider)
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice.
For the roasted garlic aioli:
- 3 cloves garlic (unpeeled)
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 tablespoon yellow mustard (you can use any mustard you like, I used yellow because it is cheap and was on hand)
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 cup of canola oil
- Pita bread
- Parsley (optional, as garnish)
- Press the tofu: Open the tofu, and place the brick between two plates, with something heavy on top. I like two large plates, and a pyrex bowl filled with water. Leave for about an hour, and then cut into strips about 1/4″ wide. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Roast the garlic (optional): Once the oven is preheated, wrap the garlic in aluminum foil, and place in the oven. The packet can go directly on the oven rack. Roast until soft, about 15 minutes. If you want a stronger, garlicky flavor, you can skip this step. However, it really mellows the garlic flavor and I would suggest it.
- Marinate the tofu: Combine the rest of the ingredients in a bowl, and mix the tofu in, making sure to fully coat it in the marinade. Marinate the tofu while you are preparing the rest of the food.
- Slice the onion: Slice the onion as thin as you can. Because you won’t be picking these for very long, they need to be paper-thin.
- Combine the juice and vinegar: In a medium-small bowl, mix the juice and vinegar and add the onions. Leave while you prepare the other ingredients.
- Slice the cucumbers: Peel the cucumber. Slice it in half and scoop out the seeds with a spoon. Slice into very thin strips.
- Make the aioli: By now, the garlic should be done. Peel it carefully. Using a blender or food processor, mince the garlic (this should cool it off, but if not wait for the garlic to cool). Add the egg, mustard, and lemon juice. Mix on high until combined, about a minute. While the mixer is still running, slowly add the oil, a few drops at a time. Once you’ve added about a 1/2 cup of the oil, you can add it faster but keep it to a thin stream. The aioli should be thick now.
- Bake the tofu: Take the marinated tofu and place on an oiled cookie sheet in one layer. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until crispy. Optional, place the cucumber in the tofu marinade (obviously, this is a perk to cooking with tofu and not meat, don’t do it with raw meat!)
- Assemble! Put the pita on a plate, and spread the aioli. Then add the tofu, cucumber, and onions. Garnish with parsley. Wrap and serve!
- You can heat the pita on the stove first. Heat a dry cast iron pan, and then place the pita on it. Heat until soft.
- If you place the pita on a sheet on aluminum foil and then wrap it, it will hold together better (and look cooler).
- If you’re feeling up to it, this recipe for pita bread from The Kitchn is great!