I thought I'd spend the rest of the month giving you a few ideas on how to USE these gravies and sauces. (and I have a few reviews too!)
Here's one of my favorite, and more unusual, ways to use Béchamel (remember, it's just "white sauce" nothing all that fancy).
Growing up in the '60's, (yes, I'm old, deal with it) one of my favorite vegetable dishes was when my Mom would make asparagus on toast with a white sauce and chopped bits of yellow boiled egg-yolk. (I know, sounds odd maybe? But I always thought it was so "fancy" and elegant). Plus, believe it or not, my Mom rarely ever made sauces or gravies, so I was particularly in love with this dish because it had the rare and much-beloved GRAVY (or white sauce).
Next time you're looking for something just a little different, but quick and easy (perfect for brunch and sort-of retro) to do with asparagus, give this a try.
- 1/2 a brick firm, water-packed tofu
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp. vegetarian "chicken"-flavor bullion powder
- 1/4 tsp. India Black Salt
- 1 pound fresh asparagus
- 1 recipe Vegan Béchamel Sauce
- 1 tablespoon snipped fresh tarragon or 1 teaspoon dried tarragon, crushed, optional, if you want.
- 4 to 6 slices toast, cut in half diagonally (these are called "toast points" which makes them sound all fancy)
- 1 tablespoon snipped, fresh chives
Make the "egg" part first; Mash tofu in a skillet with a small bit of oil. You want small pieces, I use a potato masher or a fork. Add spices and stir until well-incorporated, heat on medium-high and "scramble"-fry until dried out and crumbly. This takes 5 - 7 minutes. Mash a bit more to break up, and set aside.
Prepare asparagus; Break off woody bases where spears snap easily. If you like, slice the spears diagonally into 2- to 3-inch pieces. Place the pieces in a steamer basket over boiling water. Cover and reduce the heat. Steam for 5 to 8 minutes or until the asparagus is crisp-tender.
Meanwhile, prepare the Béchamel sauce as directed in recipe. Add tarragon if you like tarragon.
Arrange 2 toast slices on each plate. Top with the asparagus. Spoon on the sauce. Sprinkle some very finely crumbled tofu (I put mine through a sieve to make it look all "egg-yolk-fancy", yes, I'm down with re-creating this dish as exact as I can) on top of white sauce. Garnish with the chives to make it look even more fancy.
Serve to your 90-year-old-great-Aunt. She'll be impressed!!