Monday, November 10, 2014

Spiced and Seeded Tofu Steaks with Golden Acorn Squash

Versatile tofu, with its sponge-like ability to soak up flavors, benefits most from aggressive spicing. To make our insanely satisfying tofu steaks for dinner tonight, combine in a shallow bowl: 2 T. cumin seeds, 2 T. sesame seeds, 1 t. dried dill, 1 t. each sweet and smoked paprika, 1/2 t. ground black pepper, 1/4 t. cayenne pepper and 1 t. salt. Mix well.

Drain a block of extra-firm tofu (the standard size found in all supermarkets) and pat dry. Slice the tofu into 4 thick, rectangular pieces. Dredge both sides in the spice mixture and place in a pre-heated iron skillet over a medium flame. The dry skillet should be heated until a drop of water sizzles instantly before adding the tofu slices.
Cook on each side for 2-3 minutes. Do not flip the tofu for at least 2 minutes or until a crust has begun to form. A thin, rigid metal spatula works best here.
Our pan-fried tofu steaks, crowned with a dollop of homemade garlic mayo and nestling comfortably on a bed of kamut (a chewy, nutty whole wheat grain, found in all natural food stores).

Here's a hearty side dish for autumn appetites - Golden Acorn Squash roasted with Sage and Honey! So easy. So good. So to begin, scrub 1 golden or regular acorn squash very well. You may want to use a vegetable brush for cleaning. Cut the squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds and pulp. Discard unless you want to save the seeds for planting next spring. Now preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. while you slice the squash into thin (3/4" slices); slice crosswise as seen above. Place the squash slices on a baking sheet and toss with 2 T. olive oil and 1-2 T. honey. Use your hands to evenly coat the slices and then arrange in a single layer. Wash your hands. They'll be so sticky about now! Sprinkle the squash with salt and pepper and cover the pan loosely with aluminum foil. Bake for 20 minutes then remove the pan from oven. Also remove foil, flip slices and drizzle with a bit more olive oil. Sprinkle with dried sage. return to oven and roast, uncovered, for about 10 more minutes or until the squash is soft. Enjoy hot or warm, nutritious peel and all, as an accompaniment to any fall meal.

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