Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Tamarind tofu curry recipe

I was amazed by a foodie suggestion from Dave recently - he thought
Tamarind tofu curry 
that maybe we could try a meat-free alternative such as tofu in place of, say, chicken in one of our meals. We have been noticing that meat does seem to have less and less flavour to contribute so why not substitute an ingredient that is essentially tasteless to start with? It would be better for the planet, probably cheaper, and possibly easier to cook. I thumbed through our folder of favourite recipes for a suitable guinea pig(!) and the strong flavours of tamarind sauce offered a good chance of a successful meal.

I basically adapted the Tamarind Chicken recipe that I posted back in May, making minor changes to suit tofu in place of chicken. Also, I hadn't bought any fresh tomatoes so used two tablespoons of tomato puree instead. And our jar of cayenne pepper is getting old so I have taken to using it instead of chilli powder to use it up. The whole meal was ready to eat in just under an hour.

1/2 small onion, finely sliced
Rapeseed oil
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 garlic cloves, finely sliced
1/4 tsp ground cayenne pepper
1 tsp ground ginger
1 pack Dragonfly organic tofu
2 tbsp tomato puree
200ml coconut cream
3 tsp tamarind paste

Fry the onion in oil in a covered saucepan with the cinnamon until the onion has softened but not browned.

Stir in the garlic, chilli powder and ginger. Add the tomato puree, coconut cream and tamarind paste. Bring to just simmering, then continue to simmer gently, uncovered, for about half an hour, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.

Once the sauce is simmering, remove the tofu from its packaging, wrap it in several layers of kitchen roll, and put it between two chopping boards. Balance something heavyish on top. I used four china side plates. You want the weight to be enough to squeeze more water out of the tofu block, but not so much that it is squashed flat.

Once the tofu was set up pressing, I put rice in my Steamer because it takes about ten minutes to come to the boil, then another twenty to actually cook the rice.

After twenty minutes of pressing, which for me included rewrapping the tofu in the dry parts of the kitchen roll half way through, slice the block into inch cubes.

Heat a little rapeseed oil in a frying pan and fry the tofu cubes until they are golden on all sides. This only takes a few minutes and keeping them moving prevented them sticking to the pan. Set aside.

Ten minutes before dishing up, add the tofu cubes to the simmering sauce so they can absorb its flavour. Check the sauce taste and season to taste with salt and black pepper if required.

Serve the Tamarind tofu curry with the steamed rice.

We both enjoyed this meal and didn't feel that the tofu/chicken substitution meant anything was 'missing'. I think next time I cook tofu in a curry I might cut it differently - perhaps into the slim rectangles that I have previously eaten in Thai restaurants - purely for aesthetic reasons. I will stick to cubes for our next tofu recipe though. I am going to try premarinading it in order to make Lime and Coriander Tofu Skewers. If it works, I'll post the recipe next week sometime!

1 comment:

  1. Made this again yesterday, but had forgotten to buy tomato puree. Curry is ok without and has a lighter citrus flavour. Think I prefer it with the tomato though so must remember to stock up!


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