Chinese Broccoli & Marinated Tofu Bowl.
I pre-marinated the tofu the day before (24 hrs) so it was ready for cooking by the time I was making lunch.
Prep the Chinese broccoli by washing and cutting the leaves away from the stem.
Cook the tofu on a grill pan, or if you don’t have one, simply use a skillet. Crisp up all sides of the tofu triangles to ensure even cooking and grill flavour. It’s easy to turn the tofu over on each side with tongs.
The chinese broccoli stems are tougher than the leaves and require more cooking. Heat a saucepan and cook the stems in boiling salted water until tender (a few minutes). Then add the leaves to the pot and turn off the heat, cover with a lid and allow the leaves cook from the residual steam.
Chop 2 cloves of garlic for the onion/pepper stir-fry.
Using a lightly oiled wok, cook the onion + peppers on high heat, adding the chopped garlic after a few minutes of cooking to prevent it from burning.
Once the wok’ed veggies are cooked, set aside in a bowl. Using tongs take the chinese broccoli out of the boiling water and add to the seasoned wok, with the heat turned off. This coats the greens lightly in residual sauce.
The base of my bowl was filled with the peppers and onion. Two triangle pieces of tofu is a complete serving size of protein for a single meal.
The leftovers I ate later on!
1. We all know tofu is naturally ‘neutral’ in flavour, which means its important to marinate it overnight (24-hours is best) to soak up optimal flavour. I tend to keep some marinating tofu or tempeh in my fridge to use for quick meals like this during the week.
2. Before making the tofu marinade, rinse the tofu from the package and squeeze out the extra liquid. Do this by wrapping the tofu block in a clean dish towel and placing a heavy item on top to put pressure on the tofu and drain the residual water out (I used a heavy pot). Once the tofu is drained of extra water, it acts more like a sponge to soak up the marinade. After 10 minutes, unwrap the tofu and cut it into triangles. Place it in the marinade so that each piece is fully emerged.
3. While the tofu is draining, make your marinade: 2 cloves of chopped garlic, a little minced ginger, plenty of Braggs (or use soy/tamari sauce), sriracha, pinch of five spice powder, freshly squeezed orange juice, a few drops of sesame oil and liquid-stevia for sweetness. Play around with these ingredients to suit your taste, marinades are very forgiving.
4. I flavoured the stir-fried onion & peppers with plenty of Braggs, a little sriracha, a few drops of sesame oil, and 2 cloves of minced garlic.
5. Chinese broccoli aka gai-lan (pronounced as Kai-an) is a part of the Brassica oleracea family (like cauliflower, cabbage, kale). This is a nutrient-dense ‘super food’ being both a cruciferous and green leafy vegetable. For convenience sake I bought this at my local market P.A but I’d recommend going to Chinatown to get fresher, and much cheaper greens. I used an organic, GMO-free firm tofu made in Canada, which I bought at the Bio-terre shop on St. Viateur, Mile-End. Tofu is one of those key ingredients I recommend buying organic & gmo-free, as the majority of soybeans grown in this part of the world are genetically modified.