Sesame Eggplant with Tofu

First, of all, thanks to Ursela and Rosemary for the birthday wishes!  I definitely had a terrific day full of great food and good friends.

Now, onto today’s post:  Sesame Eggplant with Tofu.  After a weekend full of rich food, I thought tonight’s dinner should consist of something healthy.

Now, I have never been a big fan of tofu.  Yes, I have had a couple of tasty tofu dishes, but for the most part, stir-fries I’ve eaten containing tofu have been tasteless and soggy.  These include the stir-fries I have tried to make at home with tofu, and as a result, I haven’t made anything containing tofu for years.

However, I am trying to eat healthier and am trying to eat less meat, and I recently saw an episode of Fresh Food Fast where Emeril made a stir-fry containing eggplant and tofu.  It looked interesting, and thus, I decided to give tofu a second chance.

It turns out, I have been cooking tofu incorrectly all of this time.  In the past, I never took the time to thoroughly drain the tofu, and that is why I always ended up with a soggy, tasteless dish.  It also turns out that tofu can be delicious, and in this recipe, it is.  The tofu is firm, and the eggplant is buttery and flavorful.

Long story short, I will definitely be cooking more tofu.

*An hour before starting this recipe, prepare your tofu and eggplant:

  • Place tofu between two layers of paper towels.  Place a heavy dish on top of the tofu, and allow the tofu to drain.  After 30 minutes, exchange the paper towels for dry ones.
  • Peel and slice the eggplant.  Salt the eggplant on both sides and place in a colander over a dish.  This releases a lot of the moisture from the eggplant and improves its texture.  After an hour, rinse the eggplant slices with water.  Dry the slices with a paper towel and squeeze out any remaining liquid.

Sesame Eggplant with Tofu

Adapted from Emeril Lagasse’s Fresh Food Fast

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup peanut oil or canola oil
  • 2 pounds eggplant, cut into 1/2-inch thick slices
  • 1/2 pound firm tofu, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 4 green onions, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic (about 6 cloves)
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil

Directions

Heat 1/4 cup of the oil in a large nonstick saute pan. When it is hot, add 1/2 of the eggplant and 3/4 teaspoon of the salt. Cook until the eggplant is nicely browned and softened, stirring as necessary to promote even browning, about 5 minutes. Add half of the green onion bottoms, 1 tablespoon garlic, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper, 1/2 tablespoon sesame seeds, and 1/2 tablespoon of the sesame oil. Toss to combine. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
Repeat with the remaining eggplant, ingredients plus the tofu.  Allow the tofu to brown. Combine both batches in the same pan, and heat briefly until warmed through, 1 minute. Serve immediately.
Serves 2.
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2 responses to “Sesame Eggplant with Tofu

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