Thursday, July 22, 2010

Ode to Tofu Scramble & R.I.P. Fujimamas

This is an easy dinner in under 30 minutes , high in protein, low in fat, and flexible with the veggies you have in your fridge!

I originally started making Tofu Scramble when we lived in Japan. This dish was on the menu at my favorite western restaurant in Tokyo, Fujimamas, located in the heart of Harajuku. Hubby & I loved it so much I started making it at home and it became a comfort food of sorts. It is kind of like having breakfast for dinner....and who doesn't love breakfast for dinner once in a while!!
Now on a sad note...while writing this post, I tried to go to the Fujimamas web site to include their link and discovered it has CLOSED DOWN!!! This is a very sad thing to an ex-Tokyo expat who spent many evenings dining and Sunday's brunching at this well-know and ostensibly well-patronized Tokyo institution for 11 years. R.I.P. Fujimamas Japan (apparently their Hawaii location is still under operation).

What you need:

A block of Tofu, firm or silken both work (make sure it's organic, non-GMO)
An Onion
Red chile flakes
A Yellow or Red Bell Pepper (my fave w/ cilantro, guac & tortillas) OR Spinach and Mushrooms OR Broccoli, finely chopped OR Eggplant OR anything else you want to experiment with!

My recipe tonight:

1/2 yellow onion, diced
1/2 red onion, diced
1/2 jalapeno, seeded and diced
1-2 cloves garlic, diced
1 C crimini mushrooms, roughly chopped
1 block firm tofu, drained & pressed
2-3 Tbsp turmeric
3 C fresh spinach, chopped
olive oil
salt & pepper

Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat and saute onion until translucent and fragrant. Add chopped garlic and jalapeno and cook for 1-2 minutes. Add mushrooms and continue cooking another few minutes. Add block of tofu and turmeric powder and chop up until tofu is broken into smaller chunks and yellow throughout. Season with salt & pepper, add spinach and mix in batches until wilted.

Serve with tortillas, hot sauce, guacamole, grated cheese (if you so wish!), pita, toast, fresh tomatoes, herbs, or anything else you have on hand. This recipe is all about make it yours!

Orange Cake with Oat Flour & Almond Flour

I am slightly obsessed with this Orange Cake from Elana's Pantry blog. She adapted it from the Orange Cake sold at Starbucks, making it gluten-free using almond flour. The recipe is fascinating to me because you boil two oranges for over an hour, then process them in a food processor, peel and all, and that is the base of the cake! You add some eggs, almond flour, honey, salt and baking soda and you've got yourself an amazing cake with no added oil!! It has a custardy texture to die for and the addition of chocolate chips takes it to another level of YUM YUM YUM!

I recently made this for my sister-in-law days after she had her baby. She told me that she wanted to get a lot of oats in her diet. Turns out oats help new mothers' milk come in for breastfeeding. So I decided to alter the original recipe a bit to incorporate some oat flour for Cindy (and baby Oliver!)...and incorporate more ingredients for two cakes! The results were fantastic!

Orange Cake with Oat Flour & Almond Flour
Makes 2 for you, one for me!

3 naval oranges
5 large eggs
1 cup honey
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup reserved orange water
1 1/4 cup almond flour
1 1/4 cup rolled oats
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp sea salt
Chocolate Chips (optional)
  • Wash the oranges well and boil them whole in a large pot of water for 1 1/2 hours, or until soft.
  • While oranges are boiling, place oats in dry food processor and process until you have a flour consistency. Remove and set aside.
  • When oranges are done boiling, reserve 1/2 cup boiling orange water. Add oranges to food processor*** whole (peel and all) and process until smooth.
  • Gradually add eggs, vanilla, orange water, oat flour, almond flour, cinnamon, baking soda and salt and mix until well combined.
Pour into two well greased pans and swirl in chocolate chips last (this reduces the melting since the mixture is hot). Bake 20-25 minutes**.

**Bake time will vary based on your altitude and the size of your pan. Once the sides are browning and the top feels firm you will know it is done. A little undercooked is desirable as it gives a nice custard texture. Refrigerate after a few days or cake will spoil!

***Note that for this recipe I recommend a 10 cup capacity food processor. If you have a smaller food processor, I suggest processing the wet ingredients first, then if you don't have room for the flour, transfer to a large mixing bowl (or two) to combine. You can also cut the recipe in half, or use Elana's original recipe here.

This orange cake is packed with protein, fiber and fruit and is the kind of cake you don't feel guilty eating for breakfast, or with afternoon tea. It seems to get better and easier every time you make it, so I consider it a great kitchen staple!

My Favorite Creamy Coleslaw

I discovered this raw coleslaw at People's Market deli in OB. I am not usually a huge coleslaw fan, but the first bite was so surprisingly delicious with the perfect blend of subtle flavor that I had to know what was in it. So...I got the recipe, and I am very excited to share it with you! The amazing part of this dish really isn't the cabbage, but the delicious creamy dressing made with raw sunflower seeds. Even better, it makes a huge batch, perfect for your next family gathering, potluck, summer BBQ, or lunch all week.

People's Raw Coleslaw with Sunflower-Dill Dressing

1/2 pound red cabbage, sliced thin
1/2 pound green cabbage, sliced thin
1 1/4 cups carrots, peeled and grated
1/2 bunch green onions, sliced
3/4 cup raw sunflower seeds
4 T olive oil
1 T nama shoyu (raw soy sauce) or regular soy sauce
2 T apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup water
2 T fresh dill, minced (adding more makes this dressing spectacular if you like dill!)
1/2 T garlic, minced
1 tsp fresh oregano, minced (use dried if you don't have any on hand)
1 tsp fresh thyme leaves (my addition)
1 T lemon juice

Place cabbage, carrots and green onions in a large bowl. Place the rest of the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth and creamy. Pour over vegetables and mix well.

Serves 10-12

Nutritional Nugget:
Sunflower seeds are considered a perfect vegetarian source of protein, providing a good source of energy. They contain pectin which removes toxic metals from the body and are also good for improving skin conditions.