Friday, August 9, 2013

Grilled Tofu Salad


      I love grilling all sorts of things over an open flame. This recipe, like my like post, is meant to show that there are plenty of foods besides meat that can undergo great transformations on the grill. Poor, misunderstood tofu is just the kind of ingredients that really benefits from a kiss from an open flame. 

             While this salad is somewhat similar to the typical balsamic chicken salad that is on a lot of restaurant menus, I usually don`t like to treat tofu as if it`s simply a meat replacement. Often if you just substitute tofu into a recipe that calls for beef or chicken, you can be left with some pretty bland results. The secret is to treat tofu for what it is: a blank canvass, waiting to be filled in. That`s why I include a healthy amount of sesame oil and mirin in the marinade to round out the flavour. The balsamic sesame marinade also doubles as the salad dressing that you can try out on other salads. 

       




prep time: 15 minutes + 1 hour resting time. Cooking time: 10 minutes. Serves 5. 

Ingredients:

500g medium soft tofu
500g spinach
1 pint cherry tomatoes, cut in quarters
1 english cucumber, sliced
150g sunflower seeds 

Marinade / Dressing

80 ml balsamic vinegar
60 ml mirin
60 ml sesame oil
150 ml olive oil
salt & pepper to taste


1. Whisk together all the ingredients in the marinade except for the olive oil, then slowly incorporate the oil in a slow steady stream, while whisking constantly. Set aside half the dressing for the salad and use the rest to marinate the tofu for at least one hour, or overnight.

2.  Get the grill the very hot and the grill the tofu until nicely browned on each side, about 4 minutes per side. Slice the tofu into small wedges.

3. Toss the spinach, cucumbers, tomatoes & sunflower seeds in the dressing and dived into 5 bowls. Top each salad with slices of grilled tofu. Garnish with extra sunflower seeds.



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