Do you sometimes get in a food rut?
I try really hard to have a variety of things on the menu, but one meal which has stayed the same for what feels like the last million years is wednesday night pizza. We have good reason for it, we have a maximum of 30 mins between getting the kids to bed & DH going out, and chucking a frozen pizza in the oven and opening a bag of salad is a very easy (and relatively healthy) option.
Needless to say, we have now both got incredibly bored of it. DH has suggested we have omelette every week instead, but I want to find a few different options for us to have to avoid the rut sinking in again.
I started by looking through the the Quick Veggie section of BBC Good Food and saw this recipe for a Japanese Tofu Bowl which I thought was right up our street. The original recipe was for 4 people, so I’ve adapted for the 2 of us (i.e. reduced the liquid, but kept the rest the same) It suggested covering the tofu in cornflour before frying to get that lovely crispy coating, but I really didn’t see the point as surely it would just get soggy in the soup? We didn’t have any chilli oil or coriander to garnish, but survived without them.
Although this claims to be quick to make, you do have to first drain the tofu (I do this by wrapping in a clean tea-towel & putting it under the heavy chopping board for 30 mins or so) & then marinade it (ideally for at least 30 mins), which means it might not be much good if you’re rushing in from work to make it. Despite a few complications (I failed to pre-marinade the tofu, the edaname beans the supermarket sent me were still in their pods, and my noodles weren’t ready cooked) this was still easy to make & very tasty. It’s lightness made it feel like it was very ‘clean’ to eat IYKWIM, but beacuse of the tofu, edaname & noodles it was still substantial enough for our evening meal. I hope to make it againvery soon as I plan to use some of the broad beans from the garden in place of the edaname.
- 3 tbsp reduced salt soy sauce
- 2 tbsp seasoned rice vinegar
- 1 tbsp mirin
- 200g firm tofu, drained, patted dry and cut into 8 cubes
- sunflower oil, for frying
- 1 bunch asparagus, base of stalks snapped off, cut diagonally into about 4 pieces
- 50g fresh or frozen edamame beans
- 50g frozen peas
- small piece ginger, grated
- 400g pack straight-to-wok udon noodles
- coriander leaves, to garnish
- chilli oil, to serve
- Drain the tofu.
- Mix the soy sauce, rice vinegar and mirin in a shallow bowl. Place the tofu in the marinade and turn to coat. Leave for about 30 mins or more. (If marinading for several hours, pop it in the fridge.)
- Boil the kettle
- Heat the oil in a pan and fry the tofu (keep the left over marinade). When cooked, drain on kitchen roll, then wrap in clean kitchen roll to keep warm.
- While the tofu is cooking, put 500ml of boiled water in a medium saucepan with the reserved marinade and bring to the boil. Add asparagus, edamame beans, peas, ginger and noodles and return to the boil. Simmer until the vegetables are just tender, about 3-4 mins.
- Divide between 2 bowls and put the tofu on top.
- Garnish with some coriander leaves and serve drizzled with a little chilli oil.
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