Thursday, January 21, 2010

Homemade Vegetarian Dinner Last Tuesday!

Cooking on Tuesday night was a little rough for me. My plan was to make baked tofu in a cashew cream sauce over jasmine rice, steamed Brussel sprouts and baby carrots with fennel, and a salad incorporating some of the crazy lettuce we had bought at the San Francisco Farmer's Market on Saturday.

The biggest problem I faced was the time crunch. It was pouring rain most of the day, so my errands took longer than usual to carry out. I also think the damp cold weather irritated my foot. I was walking terribly slow with an obnoxious limp. By the time I got home I had about a half an hour to make everything. After I put on the rice and started the veggies in the steamer, I realized there was no way the rice would be done in time. I had to improvise, so I put on water for the rice noodles that I remembered I had. Those take a few minutes and are 100% brown rice, so I figured that would be an adequate substitute.

I doubled the recipe for the cashew sauce (I had found online at, with less water because that was all of the starchy water left from the pasta and three times more garlic, just because. In a medium size skillet I sautéed large pieces of red onion and the Savory baked tofu I cut into cubes. I just bought the tofu already cooked. Then I poured in about half of the cashew sauce and let it reduce about a third in the pan, because I thought it tasted too strong on its own, which I think worked perfectly. However, next time I would reduce more of it and then add the rest of the sauce and reduce it again about a third and save some cashews to garnish the dish. I never made the salad.

Baked tofu in a creamy cashew sauce over rice pasta 
and steamed Brussel sprouts, carrots and fennel

Yesterday, I made a salad with red leaf and just peppered in the weird lettuce we had bought on Saturday. One of the lettuces was a dark maroonish red color and the other one was green with spots the same color of red. Both of them had a strong bitter taste, but mixed with the red leaf lettuce, blue cheese, pine nuts, apples, and grape tomatoes it tasted great. I fried up a package of the Gimme Lean fake sausage with some red onion, poured in a jar of organic spaghetti sauce and threw in the rice we didn't use on Tuesday. I felt very industrious not wasting anything and it all came out great.

So, now it is Thursday and I have no idea what I am going to make for dinner tonight. I am being taunted by the huge bowl of radishes Thomas and I were hypnotized into buying at the Farmer's Market.
Wish me luck!!!

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