‘Honey’ Soy Tofu and Vegetable Stir-fry

This afternoon we were debating whether to get takeaway noodles or make our own tonight. We decided we would eat more vegetables if we made our own, plus at least we would know what was in it. So we went to the local asian market at Darra and bought all the ingredients. I found heaps of vegan brands of Asian products that I would usually buy from the health food shop and they were much cheaper. The only thing is that I had to check the expiry date of everything very carefully. They just have so much stock, so I guess its hard to keep track of.

I’ve never tried mong toi before. It was the freshest asian green they had. It is also known as malabar spinach, Ceylon spinach, and climbing spinach. It has a nice flavor and has a bit of sap in the leaves, but you won’t notice it. I decided to use soba noodles, since I felt like something different. I’m not sure if the Soyco Honey Soy Tofu, that I got from Woolworths, was vegan. I made more sauce, so if you don’t get flavored tofu you could always make a double batch of that. I had some chicken stock left over, so I soaked the shiitake mushrooms in that. If you don’t have any at hand just soak in water, then add the water to the stir-fry. As for the vegetables anything goes. I always like to have onion, garlic and ginger to start with and add whatever I have in the fridge.

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‘Honey’ Soy Tofu and Vegetable Soba Noodles (vegan, nut free)

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons coconut oil

2 garlic cloves

1 nob of ginger

1 onion

1 carrot

10 snake beans

1 zucchini

handful of shiitake mushrooms

1/4 cup vegan chicken liquid stock (optional)

bunch of mong toi or asian greens

1x packet of honey soy flavored tofu

soba noodles or other noodlesP1000468

Ingredients for sauce:

2 tablespoons mushroom soy

1 tablespoons sesame oil

2 tablespoons agave

1 tablespoons lemon juice

Method:

1. First prepare all the vegetables and tofu. Dice the garlic and ginger. Slice the onion and cut the carrots julienne. Cut the zucchini and snack beans. P1000469Dice the stems of the mong toi and slice the leaves. Soak the skiitake mushrooms in stock or water (just enough to cover). Cut the tofu in cubes.

2. Boil water and cook the soba noodles and put to side.

3. In the meantime, prepare the sauce. Just combine the ingredients in a small bowl.P1000471

4. Heat coconut oil in the wok. Then add the onion, garlic, ginger and carrot (I don’t like the carrot crunch). Cook for 3-4 mins or till onions are browned.

5. Then add the snake beans, zucchini, stems of mong toi, shiitake mushrooms, soaking stock/water and sauce. Cook for 3 mins or until tender.P1000472

6. Add tofu and mong toi leaves. Cook for 2-3 mins or until the leaves go limp.

7. Lastly, add the noodles and heat through before serving.

*Serves 3-4

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Roasted Cherry Tomato, Spinach, Lentil & Buckwheat Stew and Pumpkin Spelt Loaf

For this stew and the Roasted Cherry tomato Sauce I used Sweet Solanato Cherry Tomatoes. They are probably the best cherry tomatoes I have tasted in Australia and are exclusive to Woolworths at the moment. They just became available, so I picked up heaps of these 200 g punnets for only $0.48 each. They are really, really sweet and are addictive to eat fresh. They are a new variety, bred in the Netherlands and are grown hydroponically in Bundaberg, Queensland and Gosford, New South Wales. If you are in Australia and want to find out more about them I have included a nice clip below.

This is a really easy stew to make and full of flavor. I think roasted the tomatoes first really makes the different in the taste. I tried to make use the white parts of the spinach. Initially I sauted them with the onions, carrots and chili, and then pureed them with the tomatoes, so that they wouldn’t be crunch in the stew. I wanted to leave the leaves whole so I added them at the end, but if you have picky eaters you can puree them as well and they will be none the wiser. The red lentils and buckwheat went really well as they are both soft, quick cooking ingredients that are really healthy and have a mild taste.

For the Pumpkin Spelt Loaf I took some inspiration from this Taste recipe, but I changed it a lot so I could utilize my spelt flour. I added the dry ingredients to the pumpkin, rather then the other way around, which made it a lot less bread like, but I got rave reviews at home. So maybe it was a good mistake. It was even better the next day once it had set more in the fridge and we toasted in the sandwich press and served it with butter.

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Roasted Cherry Tomato, Red Lentil & Buckwheat Soup (vegan, gluten free, soy free, nut free)

Ingredients:

olive oil

600g cherry tomatoes

8 garlic cloves

sea salt

1 onion

2 carrots

2 small red chili

4 leaves of silverbeet (3 stems chopped and 4 of just green leaves)

½ cup red lentils

½ cup buckwheat

3 cups of vegan chicken liquid stock

Method:

1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees. DSC01119

2. Wash and cut in half all the cherry tomatoes.DSC01121

3. Take a baking tray and add cherry tomatoes, whole garlic cloves and sprinkle with sea salt. Cook for 15-20 mins, so that garlic is soft.

4. In the meantime, dice the onion, carrots, red chili. Separate the white stems and spines of the spinach from the green leaves. Then dice white stems (from 3 of whole leaves, discard one).

5. Take a pot and heat 1 tbsp of olive oil. Then saute the onion, carrots, red chili for 3 mins. Then add the spinach stems and saute for a further 3 mins. DSC01122

6. Once tomatoes & garlic are ready, peel the garlic and place both in to the pot. Then use a bar mix to blend all the vegetables together with the tomatoes to form a sauce (can also be done in a processor.

7. Put the buckwheat to cook in another pot. This should take 20-30 mins according to packet instructions.

8. While the buckwheat is cooking, add the red lentils and liquid stock to the pot with the pureed sauce. Bring to the boil, then place on simmer for 20-30 mins or until lentils are cooked.DSC01128

9. Lastly, cut the green spinach leaves (from 4 whole spinach leaves) into ribbons. You can do this by scrunch them up and in a cigar shape, then cutting them thinly.

10. Before serving add the spinach leaves and buckwheat and heat through, so the spinach goes limp.

*Serves 5

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Pumpkin Spelt Loaf (vegan, nut free)

Ingredients:

500-600 g butternut pumpkin

1.5 cup wholemeal spelt

½ cup white unbleached flour

1 teaspoon sea salt

3 teaspoons baking powder

2 teaspoons fennel seeds

2 eggs worth of egg replacer

5 tablespoons melted butter

½ cup soy milk

1 big sprig of rosemary

Method:

1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.

1. Wash and cut pumpkin into small pieces, remembering to remove the seeds and skin.

2. Place pumpkin in a steamer and cook for 20 mins or until soft.

3. Mash the pumpkin with a fork.

4. Take a large bowl and mix the spelt, white flour, sea salt, baking powder, fennel seeds and 2/3 of the rosemary leaves.

5. Then add egg replacer, melted butter and soy milk. DSC01115

6. Lastly add the pumpkin and mix through.

7. Place the mixture in a loaf tin and top with the remaining rosemary leaves.

8. Place in the oven and bake for 60 mins.

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Fresh Food Update – Sweet Solanato, http://cooking-recipes4u.blogspot.com.au/2012/11/fresh-food-update-sweet-solanato.html

AU: Spring into Sweet Solanato tomatoes, www.freshplaza.com/news_detail.asp?id=102489