Orange tofu stir-fry

IMG_3752 Can you believe there are only 4 weeks until Christmas. How very wonderful – and crazy – all at the same time. Here’s hoping that my work schedule and ‘life’ calms down a little between now and then, so that I can get some quality "Christmas baking" time in….. Tonight’s dinner continued my recent ‘quick and easy’ theme, and what is quicker and easier than stir-fry! An orange tofu stir-fry. IMG_3748 I came across a similar recipe in one of my cook books, and with a few modifications, converted it to a BBB-style recipe. Starting with the tofu marinade… IMG_3749 Orange zest, juice and tamari. Combined and poured over diced tofu, allowing it to marinade for a good 20 minutes or so. Meanwhile, I prepared other vegetables… IMG_3750 which tonight were capsicum, carrot and asparagus. Throw them all into a wok with some rice vermicelli noodle, as well as some orange segments and green onions at the last minute. IMG_3751 Let the wok do its magic, and voila. Dinner is served. IMG_3752 Truthfully, both Mr BBB and I were rather apprehensive when the fresh orange segments were added. IMG_3753 But, you know what? IMG_3756 They were my favourite bits! Juicy, and sweet, and the flavour worked quite nicely with the tamari tofu. IMG_3757 For a rather random stir-fry – this one is certainly a keeper! What about you? What is the weirdest ingredient you have put in a stir-fry?

Quinoa salad with tahini dressing

IMG_3111 After a weekend of sunshine, snoozes, yoga and relaxation, I woke up feeling rather refreshed this morning. Certainly a far cry from the illness that knocked me around last week, that’s for sure. I also continued my attempts to get in as many vegetables as I could over the weekend, particularly as my appetite started to return with a vengeance. Starting with a tasty little quinoa and vegetable salad that made an appearance for lunch. So simple, yet oh so delicious. IMG_3121 And a perfect "pantry" cleaner. I cooked a cup of quinoa in a mixture of water and vegetable stock, until the quinoa had softened and absorbed the water. IMG_3102 Then it was simply a matter of combining the quinoa with a variety of vegetables I had on hand. IMG_3103 Capsicum, cucumber, tomato and baby spinach. IMG_3106 To finish, I made a simple tahini dressing to pour over the salad. IMG_3108 And so lunch was served. IMG_3105 Fresh, healthy, tasty…. Vegetarian and gluten free. IMG_3116 And a tad addictive. Especially with the luscious creamy tahini dressing. Quinoa salad with tahini dressing (serves 2-4)

  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 1 cup vegetable stock
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 red capsicum, finely diced
  • 1 green capsicum, finely diced
  • 1 cucumber, diced
  • 1 tomato, deseeded and diced
  • Handful baby spinach
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 tbs tamari
  • 2 tbs tahini
  • 1tbs water (or more or less to get desired consistency)
  1. Cook quinoa in water and stock, according to packet directions. Set aside to cool slightly, then stir through the vegetables.
  2. To make the tahini dressing: Whisk all ingredients together, adding more or less water to get your desired consistency.
  3. Divide salad among serving dishes and top with tahini dressing to serve.

What about you? How do you like to use quinoa?

Vegetarian stroganoff

With our appetites ignited by the blini appetiser, it wasn’t long before we were keen to move onto the next course in our recent Russian-inspired lunch. Which just happened to be…..a battle of the stroganoffs! beefvtofu Mr BBB prepared a rich and creamy original version, with the trusty guidance of Maggie Fulton. IMG_2942 And, with the carnivores taken care of, I opted to try and make a vegetarian version. With tofu for protein… IMG_2918 Vegetables for bulk… IMG_2917  The assistance of our wok… IMG_2920 And a mixture of tomato passata, stock and peanut butter… IMG_2922 And I had something that started to almost resemble a stroganoff. IMG_2921 Finished with crème fraiche, and my meat-free take on an old classic was complete! IMG_2939 I was really pleased with how this stroganoff turned out. It was rich in flavour, and wonderfully creamy… IMG_2944 Just how a stroganoff should be really!  IMG_2945 I found it hard to compare the two versions, however, as they were both yummy in their own way. IMG_2947 Served with brown rice, and topped with fresh parsley, I am going to sit on the fence and call this a draw 😉 Although, I must say, I did love how vibrant in colour the vegetarian version turned out – and the tofu and mushrooms really take on the sweet and creamy flavours of the dish. Vegetarian stroganoff (serves 6 to 8) (adapted from here)

  • 1tbs olive oil
  • 600g firm tofu, pressed and cubed
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 red onion, sliced
  • 1 red capsicum, sliced
  • 400g button mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 cup tomato passata
  • 400ml vegetable stock
  • 2 tbs peanut butter
  • 2 tsp cornflour
  • 1 tbs tomato paste
  • 200g crème fraiche
  • salt and pepper
  • chopped fresh parsley to serve
  1. Heat oil in a large wok over a medium-high heat. Add tofu and stir fry until golden brown. Remove and set aside.
  2. Add onion and garlic to the wok, and cook for 2 minutes.
  3. Add capsicum and mushrooms and cook for a further 4 minutes, stirring.
  4. Return the tofu to the pan. Add the passata, stock and peanut butter, stirring to coat. Simmer for 5-10 minutes, or until the liquids have mostly evaporated.
  5. Transfer to a medium sized saucepan, and place over a low heat.
  6. Mix cornflour with a little water to form a paste. Add to the tofu and vegetables, along with the tomato paste and crème fraiche. Stir to combine and heat over a low heat until warmed through (stirring often). Season with salt and pepper.
  7. Top with fresh parsley to serve.

Meat-less mozzarella meatballs

IMG_6532 Tonight’s dinner came about when I realised there was a portion of tofu in the fridge that needed to be used, and an abundance of tinned tomatoes in the pantry. Thus, I decided to make another batch of my tofu meatballs, or ‘meat-less’ meatballs if you will. IMG_6501 But this time…with a difference. When I previously made these meat-less meatballs, the end result was a little plain. So, this evening, I wanted to improve on the original recipe and add some extra flavour. Flavour improver #1: … IMG_6502 A surprise mozzarella filling!! Around which the balls were created.  IMG_6503 Repeated, until I had myself a little ball army. IMG_6504 IMG_6508 Baked until golden brown. IMG_6510 Gotta love that mozzarella ooze… IMG_6511  Time for the flavour improver #2. IMG_6513 A rich tomato sauce using tinned tomatoes, passata and red vinegar – into which I placed the balls. Simmered gently for 10 minutes. IMG_6515 Flavour improver #3….   IMG_6522 A big handful of fresh basil! IMG_6527 Resulting in meat-less meatballs that were packed with simple yet tasty flavours. IMG_6538 Is it just me, or are tomatoes and basil the most perfect match made in heaven?? IMG_6530   I was really pleased with how these turned out. Unlike last time, they were far from plain. And the mozzarella surprise ??? IMG_6545 Well it gave them just the right amount of flavour … albeit from the inside out 🙂 IMG_6537     A tasty vegetarian meal – and a great way to use leftover tofu! Meat-less mozzarella meatballs  (makes 16) – gluten free These healthy gluten free vegetarian ‘meat’ balls showcase the wonderful flavours of tofu, tomatoes and basil. With the added surprise of a mozzarella centre, they can also be adapted to be vegan by substituting non-dairy cheese.  Eat them “as is’’, or stretch their serving size by piling atop a bowl of spaghetti or perhaps even spinach.

  • 300g firm tofu, mashed
  • 1 onion, very finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1/4 cup almond meal
  • 1/3 cup rice crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons GF flour
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 50g mozzarella, cut into small cubes
  • 1.5 cups tomato passata
  • 1 tin chopped tomatoes
  • 2 tbs red vine vinegar
  • 1/2 bunch basil, leaves torn
  • oil spray, to grease
  1. Preheat oven to 200ºC. Line a baking tray with baking paper or a silicone mat. Spray lightly with olive oil spray.
  2. Combine the tofu, onion, garlic, almond meal,rice crumbs, flour, dried basil and tomato paste in a large bowl until well combined.
  3. With slightly dampened hands, grab a small handful of the tofu mix. Place a cube of mozzarella in the middle, and work the mixture into a ball around it, making sure the mozzarella is fully enclosed.
  4. Repeat until you have made 16 balls, and place on the lined baking tray.
  5. Bake in oven for 16 minutes,  turning them over halfway.
  6. Meanwhile, heat the tinned tomatoes, passata and vinegar in a frypan over a low heat. When the balls have finished baking, place them in the tomato sauce, turning them gently to coat, and continue to cook for 10 minutes.
  7. Remove from heat, and gently stir through the fresh basil.
  8. Serve ‘as is’, or atop a bed of spaghetti or spinach.

What about you? Do you have any other ‘flavour ideas’  for these meatless meatballs? Happy Baking 🙂