Monday, 31 August 2015

Smoked tofu risotto recipe for #MeatfreeMonday

I first saw a similar recipe to this one, a tofu paella, on the Cauldron
Foods website. It would have resulted in far too great a quantity for just us two, so I tweaked the basic idea to come up with the following creation. Theirs also had green veggies including broccoli which would add even more colour to the meal. I like the visual combination of red pepper strips a yellow sweetcorn. The brightness hasn't come out well in this photograph though. I really must work on my meal photography because everything always looks much better on the table that it does when posted to my blog!

As this is a vegetarian dinner and especially because I am posting the recipe on a Monday, I am going to add the link to the weekly Meatfree Mondays over at Tinned Tomatoes. Jac posts a weekly blog of vegetarian meal suggestions and the images are usually exquisite!

For my risotto, I used Vlana smoked tofu which has a strong smoky flavour - almost too strong for me as it turned out although it was Dave's favourite of the tofus that we have tried so far. Isn't that just typical!

1 200-250g pack of Smoked Tofu
2 tbsp rapeseed oil
1/2 large onion, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, finely diced
1 red pepper, sliced into sticks
100g risotto rice
1 tsp smoked paprika
2 tbsp tomato puree
200ml red wine
300ml vegetable stock
2 tbsp mixed herbs
Small tin of sweetcorn
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 lemon to garnish

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 which turned out to be a mistake as, part way through, they suddenly slid to the floor and one broke. Don't use china items. 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. Leave the tofu to press for about twenty minutes, then unwrap and slice it into cubes or cuboids.

Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a large saucepan and fry the tofu pieces in batches for a couple of minutes each side until they are a nice golden brown colour. Set tofu aside.

Add the remaining oil to the same pan together with the onion and garlic. Fry until softened, then add the sliced pepper.

When the pepper begins to soften, stir in the rice, smoked paprika and tomato puree. Cook for a minute or so before adding the wine, stock, herbs and sweetcorn.

Bring briefly to the boil, then simmer, uncovered, until the rice is cooked through. This will probably take about half an hour. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking.

Five minutes before serving, stir in the tofu and season to taste with salt and pepper.

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