TIP Buy tofu packed in water for these recipes; drain the water before using.
At this partying time of year, an occasional healthful and meatless meal is especially important.
TOFU AND VEGETABLE STIR-FRY
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 cup water
1/3 cup low-sodium soy sauce
1/4 teaspoon Asian chili sauce (or to taste)
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon minced ginger
2 minced garlic cloves (1 teaspoon)
14 ounces (1 package) extra-firm tofu, cut into 3/4-inch cubes
4 cups broccoli florets
1 cup very thinly sliced carrots
2 red peppers, cut into 3/4-inch dice
1. Combine cornstarch and 1 tablespoon water in small bowl, stirring until cornstarch is dissolved. Add remaining cup water, soy sauce and chili sauce; set aside.
2. Heat oil in a large, nonstick skillet over medium high. Add the ginger and garlic and stir-fry 30 seconds. Add the tofu in a single layer and cook until lightly browned, turning once, for a total of about 10 minutes. Transfer to a plate.
3. Add broccoli, carrots and red pepper and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add sauce and cook until the vegetables begin to soften and the sauce starts to thicken. Add the tofu back to the pan and cook until the vegetables are crisp-tender and sauce is glossy, about 2 minutes longer. Serve over rice. Makes 3 servings.
Nutritional analysis for each serving 257 calories, 19 g protein, 22 g carbohydrates, 6 g fiber, 13 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 762 mg sodium
HOT AND SOUR SOUP
3 tablespoons cornstarch
3 tablespoons lower-sodium soy sauce
1/3 cup rice vinegar
1 tablespoon Asian fish sauce
2 teaspoons honey
1 tablespoon canola oil
2 cloves garlic, cut lengthwise into thin slices
1 inch ginger, cut across into very thin slices
4 ounces shiitake mushrooms, stems removed and caps thinly sliced (about 1 1/2 cups)
8 cups lower-sodium vegetable broth
1 (14-ounce) block extra firm tofu, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 red pepper, cut into 2-by-1/4-inch strips
1 cup shredded carrots
8 cups fresh baby spinach
3 scallions, cut into 1-inch lengths
1. Dissolve cornstarch in soy sauce; stir in vinegar, fish sauce and honey.
2. Heat oil in a large pot over medium high. Add the garlic, ginger and shiitakes and cook, stirring, 1 minute, or until the mushrooms begin to soften. Add the broth and bring to a boil.
3. Stir in the tofu, red pepper and carrots and simmer 4 minutes, or until the soup is slightly thickened.
4. Stir in the spinach and scallions, remove from heat and serve immediately. Makes 4 servings.
Nutritional analysis for each serving 329 calories, 19g protein, 39 g carbohydrates, 9 g fiber, 12 g fat, 2 g saturated fat, 1,512 mg sodium
PEANUT-HOISIN NOODLES WITH GLAZED TOFU TRIANGLES
1 (14-ounce) block firm tofu, cut across into 6 slices
8 ounces linguine
8 ounces sugar snaps
1 red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
1 cup shredded carrot
3 tablespoons rice vinegar, divided
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 tablespoon brown sugar
2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
1/4 cup natural-style peanut butter (no added sugar)
3 tablespoons hoisin sauce
2/3 cup lower-sodium vegetable broth
1/4 cup chopped scallions
1. Cut each tofu slice across on the diagonal, place on a plate in a single layer, top with paper towel and a second plate to press the tofu for 15 minutes.
2. Cook linguine in plenty of lightly salted boiling water, according to package directions. In last 2 minutes of cooking, add sugar snaps. One minute later, add the red peppers and carrots; drain.
3. Make the tofu glaze: Combine 2 tablespoons of the rice vinegar, orange juice, sugar and soy sauce in a saucepan; bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until thick, 5 to 6 minutes.
4. Heat broiler; coat broiler pan with cooking spray. Place tofu in single layer under broiler until lightly browned, about 4 minutes. Turn the tofu over, drizzle with the sauce and place back under the broiler until the glaze is thickened, about 3 minutes. Remove from oven.
5. Make sauce for noodles: Combine peanut butter, hoisin, remaining 1 tablespoon of rice vinegar and broth in small saucepan over high heat. Stir and bring to a boil; immediately reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring, until color deepens and sauce is thick, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat and toss with noodles. To serve, divide noodles onto 4 plates; top each plate with 3 pieces of tofu and garnish with scallions. Makes 4 servings.
Nutritional analysis for each serving 559 calories, 30 g protein, 73 g carbohydrates, 9 g fiber, 18 g fat, 3 g sat fat, 695mg sodium