The Diary of a Tofu Snob

First of all, some good news! I am feeling almost at 100% back to myself after kicking whatever little bug I had. My Aunt told me about this homeopathic nasal spray called Sinus Blaster that practically burns your nasal passages to a crisp clears your sinuses up AND is totally natural and not tested on animals. It’s a vegan dream come true! It was a long few days of being posted up on the couch at home but with proper rest with my two three favorite guys:

1) My Cat and 2) Conan Doyle's complete "Sherlock Holmes"

1) My Cat and 2) Conan Doyle’s complete “Sherlock Holmes”

3) my favorite Baker Street boys. Benedict Cumberbatch is so dreamy.

3) my favorite Baker Street boys. Benedict Cumberbatch is so dreamy.

There was a lot of reading and a lot of rewatching the new series of “Sherlock” (it’s SO good, you guys) but I am feeling back to my normal self, so I figured I would head back to school a day early because I knew I would have plenty of unpacking to do, not to mention groceries to get.

While I was home, I spent a lot of time researching new recipes. I was browsing through channels one afternoon at home and stumbled upon this cooking show on PBS that caught my attention. I not-so-secretly love PBS, so I paused and saw what the show was. I had never heard of her, but I was watching The Jazzy Vegetarian and she was making some delicious-looking tofu cutlets. After the show was over, I frantically searched the recipe she made and found out more about the host — as it turns out, she is a vegan! I found the recipe and flagged it for a later date.

Today was that date.

I had to go to the store because for not being at school for  a month, my fridge was looking bleak:

I don't want to talk about it.

I don’t want to talk about it.

So I spent a good hour-and-a-half-ish at the store and went on a very successful haul:

I usually use tofu for wraps for extra protein, and if I would have realized the recipe I was going to try out tonight would have used a whole block of tofu, I would have bought more. Oh well, it was worth it. Behold, Coconut Encrusted Tofu Cutlets by The Jazzy Vegetarian:

Coconut Encrusted Tofu Cutlets

Coconut Encrusted Tofu Cutlets

A few things about this recipe:

  1. Stick to it to the T. I promise you this recipe won’t let you down, so there is no excuse for you to tweak it.
  2. Don’t get ahead of yourself or get cocky when making it…you’ll end up making a stupid and completely avoidable mistake like I did. DO NOT, for the sake of all good things, DO NOT add the tamari sauce to the coconut/wheat germ blend. Never shall the two meet in the same bowl. *NOTE: I really would recommend using tamari instead of taking the easy route and using soy sauce. Basically, tamari has a much stronger taste but gets more mild after baking. Though the two are in the same family of sauces (if such a thing exists), they do make a difference in your cooking. Read all about it here.
  3. If you are not a tofu connoisseur or connoisseuse, let me give you a pro tip from someone who has had many rodeos with tofu: get extra-firm tofu for this recipe and drain it. It’ll absorb the sauce better and, in turn, will help the crust to adhere to the cutlet.

Easily, this recipe gets a ten out of ten, in my book. It is super easy to prep, super easy to make but doesn’t taste thrown together in any way. I did end up making the Maple-Scallion dipping sauce (the recipe is on the same page as the tofu recipe) and they both go hand in hand. The sweetness of the syrup balances out with the bitterness of the green onion and compliments the coconut. I used unsweetened coconut and I ALWAYS use pure maple-syrup, so there was a good balance of sweet flavors. I am a big advocate of natural maple syrup for the reason that it doesn’t have all of those weird chemicals or corn syrup, to say nothing that it tastes much better than the type you normally smear on pancakes in the morning.

Dinner time in apartment 3.

Dinner time in apartment 3.

Not only did I have great success with this recipe, I also used my steamer basket for the first time and that was a great experience! I really love green beans (except the canned ones) and though fresh ones are my favorite, I’m really lame and usually get the frozen ones that you can steam in the microwave in the steamable bag. Unfortunately, those usually lack the fresh taste and are kind of pricey, especially in contrast to how inexpensive fresh green beans are. I bought a big bag of fresh beans tonight and decided to try them out on my own. With a bit of help, I steamed them in my steaming basket on the stove for about 8 minutes and had a pretty little spread for dinner.

I have a few new recipes lined up to try this week, so be on the lookout for those. Especially now that I can breathe through my nose again. Life is good.

Cheers.

 

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