Fried Tofu with Ginger Relish
When it comes to natural cooking, there’s nothing quite like the richness of fried tofu. Golden brown and hearty, fried tofu serves us on so many levels--nourishing, satisfying our cravings for rich foods, releasing muscle tension in our shoulders and legs. Combining the relaxed energy of tofu with a strongly flavored, deeply vitalizing ginger relish, we get the added benefit of stimulated circulation.
Makes 3-4 servings
sunflower or avocado oil
1, 4-ounce block extra firm tofu, 1-inch cubes
light sesame oil
1-2 cloves fresh garlic, finely minced
5-6 slices fresh ginger, finely minced
2-3 shallots, finely minced
generous pinch cumin
6-8 leaves fresh basil, finely shredded or ½ teaspoon dried basil
1/4 red bell pepper, roasted over an open flame, peeled, seeded, finely diced
brown rice vinegar
Place enough sesame oil in a skillet to generously cover the bottom. Turn the heat to medium and when the oil is hot (you’ll see patterns forming in the oil, known as ‘dancing’), begin to pan-fry the tofu until golden on each side, about a minute, turning once. Drain on paper and place tofu in a warm oven.
Heat a small amount of oil in a skillet over medium heat. Sauté garlic, ginger and shallots, with cumin and a pinch of salt until caramelized, about 15 minutes. Season to taste with salt, stir in basil and red pepper and cook for 1 more minute.
To serve, stir tofu into ginger relish and transfer to a serving platter. Sprinkle lightly with rice vinegar and serve hot.