Photo: Kelly Rossiter
Like many people, my mother serves turkey for Christmas dinner, and she just can't cope with the fact that my son is a vegetarian, so we have to provide a main course for him ourselves. I had just received Appetite for Reduction by Isa Chandra Moskowitz the day before, so I handed him the book and told him to choose what he wanted to eat. He's very partial to Asian food, so he chose the Hoisin-Mustard Tofu.This recipe is actually supposed to be wrapped in lettuce, but we dispensed with that seeing as we were transporting it to another dinner table. This was quite nice with the sweetness of the hoisin against the tanginess of some homemade mustard I was given as a gift. It made enough sauce that you could easily serve it over rice or noodles. The author suggests cooking the tofu and the sauce in two different skillets, but that seems like more cleaning up to me. I just removed the tofu from the pan to a plate when it was cooked and then put it back in when the sauce was finished. I also left out the red pepper because I didn't have one and it was Christmas day so all the stores were closed, but I don't think it affected the taste.
Hoisin Mustard Tofu
1 block extra firm tofu, sliced in 1/2 inch pieces
2 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced small
1 small onion, diced small
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp fresh ginger, minced
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (or 1/2 tsp if you want it spicier)
3 tbsp mirin
2 tbsp hoisin sauce
2 tsp prepared yellow mustard
1. Preheat a cast iron or heavy bottomed non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add the tofu and cook for about 10 minutes, flipping it with a thin spatula once in a while, until it is browned on both sides. About midway through, drizzle with the soy sauce and toss to coat.
2. Remove tofu to a plate and set aside. Saute the red pepper, onion, garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes in the sesame oil. Cook for about 10 minutes. The veggies should be soft and browned. Add the mirin and let cook for about another minute. Add the hoisin and mustard and cook for about another minute.