Saturday, February 26, 2011

Vegan Tofu Curried Salad

Eventually, every vegetarian is confronted by the specter of tofu.
$1.49 at Wegmans: Because of a lack of attractive designer recyclable bags,I always feel a bit uncomfortable shopping at Whole Foods

I'm often asked: "So what do you really eat? Tofu?"  I must confess that if I were able to derive all my necessary nutrients from Snickerdoodle batter and peanut butter eaten straight from the jar, I would be a happy woman.  When I first stopped eating meat at age thirteen, my greatest sacrifice was having to switch from Oreo cookies to Hyrdox, because Oreos (back then) contained lard.  However, woman cannot live by chocolate alone (or so I have been told).

Truthfully, I don't understand why tofu has such a bad reputation. In many areas of the world, even meat eaters enjoy eating tofu.  Believe it or not, there are actually meat-based dishes that contain tofu. True, on its own it's not a particularly attractive ingredient.  But then neither are boneless, skinless chicken breasts or strips of cut-up pulled pork.

Tofu, as far as I'm concerned, is the real 'other white meat.'
I think the other reason tofu has a bad reputation (in a very non-Joan Jett kind of way) lies in the fact that often people fail to drain it before cooking with it, giving it a watery or slimy texture.  Usually I put it in a strainer, perch it over a bowl.

Then I weigh it down with a plate and another bowl.  See?  Easy enough.

Tofu is a great absorber of flavor, which is why I love to use it in curry-flavored dishes.  Mixed with the vegan mayonaise 'Nayonaise' it's a great meat-based salad alternative.

Vegan Tofu Curried Salad
Makes 5-6 servings

1 package (14 ounces) of firm tofu, drained of water
5-6 tablespoons of vegan mayonnaise (I prefer Nayonaise)
1/4 cup of finely minced onion (red or white)
2 teaspoons curry powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup cashews
1/4 cup crasins (dried cranberries) or golden raisins

1. Mash the tofu, Nayonaise, onion, curry powder,  together.

2. Fold in the cashews and dried fruit until well-incorporated.

3. Serve on salad, on toasted whole wheat bread or pita slices.


  1. So true about the draining! That's always been my theory as to why Americans don't like tofu. But now I have to see if I can make ma-bo dofu with fake meat...

  2. @Mother Duck--I took another look at that meaty tofu recipe! It does sound good! Perhaps a seitan-tofu 'Happy Family' for a vegan clone of ma-bo.

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  4. Loved the little remark about Whole Foods. I have *never* been in there, never plan on it.

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