Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Crispy Tofu Triangles and Peanut Sauce

One of the many ways my kids loved to eat tofu when they were little Sprouts (it still is); and quite possibly the quickest "tofu" dinner I can make. SOOO easy!

And the triangle shape was a MUST! Perfect shape for little hands to hold, and lots of crispy corners.
I was in serious trouble if I forgot to make "sail-boat shapes" for their dinner.

Don't laugh - The picture on the left is vintage Tofu-Mom; one of my first-ever vegan-food-photo attempts, back before I even started blogging!

This works best with really fresh, firm, well-drained tofu. Wrap it in paper towels for a few minutes. Some people prefer their tofu pressed and drained until it is super firm and there's very little moisture. This also removes some of the "beany" flavor that some people don't care for. It's up to you.

Crispy Tofu Triangles and Peanut Sauce

peanut or coconut oil
1 package extra firm tofu, drained between paper towels, pressed to remove excess moisture if you do that sort of thing (I don't bother).
2 - 3 Tb. cornstarch
salt and pepper (optional)

Peanut Sauce:

1 1/2 cups smooth peanut butter
1 - 2 Tbsp. coconut milk **
3 tablespoons water
2 Tb. sugar
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon hot sauce (or to taste)
1 tablespoon fresh finely grated ginger root
2 cloves garlic, minced (or pressed thru a garlic press)
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro (optional, if your kids don't mind "green bits")

Cook tofu triangles:
Heat shallow layer of oil in nonstick skillet.
To prepare tofu: slice into 1/2 inch thick slices; Cut slices into squares and then in triangles (or leave in squares - my kids just like them triangle shaped - it all tastes the same though).
Set on paper towels to absorb some moisture.
Put cornstarch in a shallow bowl. Season with a little salt and pepper IF desired. Dip triangles in cornstarch, shake excess off, (you just want it "dusted" with cornstarch) and put in hot pan.
Fry until golden brown, I can't really say how long, as it varies with the type of pan, type of stove and how hot your comfortable cooking at.
Turn with tongs or fork, and fry on other side, remove, drain on paper towels or brown paper bag. Keep warm.
Continue until all pieces are cooked (If you have a large pan, this goes faster, you may need to add more oil but you only need a thin layer)

For sauce:
In a bowl, mix the peanut butter, coconut milk, water, lime juice, soy sauce, hot sauce, sugar, ginger, and garlic. Heat over low heat if you want it warmed - I usually serve it cold. Mix in the cilantro just before serving.

Drizzle sauce over tofu, or let your kids dunk - It's also YUMMY over veggies, noodles or rice!

And yes - That's totally a generic Asian-blend frozen veggie mix from Trader Joes, - hey, it was still good.

**I freeze leftover coconut milk in ice cube trays and then pop out the cubes into a large ziploc baggie so I can throw a little into sauce and curries when needed, without using an entire can.


Sal said...

nice! this sounds great, I always loved satay sauce so i bet this is great with crispy tofu.

T said...

I know some Thai restaurants that serve this and I always love it. Thanks for the recipe!

James said...

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Dawn said...

Oh, I love the frozen cubes of leftover things trick! Great idea for coconut milk as it does end up that you don't always (or even usually) need the whole can.

Great recipe, my son's gonna love this!