Archive of ‘Food’ category

Making tofu from scratch in 9 easy steps.

Step 1

Soak 1 1/2 cups of dried soy beans in 4 1/2 of cups water overnight.

Step 2

Blend the beans and water until almost smooth.

Step 3

In a large, thick bottom pot, bring 5 cups of water to a boil then stir in the beany water and reduce to a simmer (stirring often). Within 8 minutes a thick layer of foam will form on the surface.

Step 4

Using a cheesecloth, strain the beany, foamy liquid, squeezing out as much as possible.

On the left:

Soy milk (future tofu).

On the right:

Okara or soy bean pulp (no longer useful for the tofu making process).  I freeze, dehydrate or bake my okara and use it as filler in hamburgers and meatloaf type recipes…you can also us it to make banana or corn bread.

Step 5

Return the soy milk to your large pot (after a quick rinse) and warm the liquid at a very low heat, make sure it doesn’t simmer, yet get it hot enough that it’s almost too hot to the touch. Remove from heat.

Step 6

Mix 1 cup of water with a 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice. Slowly stir in half of the liquid with the soy milk, stirring clockwise about 6 times. Leave the spoon in the liquid and wait until the liquid stops moving then stir (in a figure 8) the remaining water/lemon juice with the soy milk. At this point you will notice fresh curds forming. 

Step 7

Place a lid over the pot and let rest for 15 minutes. At this point the curds should sink to the bottom with water at the top.

Step 8

Carefully remove the curds with a slotted spoon or strainer and let drain in a cheesecloth.

Step 9

Press the cheesecloth with curds with a heavy plate or tofu press (bought mine on eBay) for 15 minutes. Drain the excess water and refrigerate for an hour.

You did it!

Eat right away or cover with cold water and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. 

Do you eat tripe?

Tripe around the world

I’ve eaten tripe dishes all over the world; in the night markets of Marrakech, stewed with beans and carrots in Portugal, in soups in Germany, Slovakia, Poland, Macedonia, Serbia and Turkey, menudo in Mexico, baked with liver, mushrooms and cheese in Bulgaria, from a bubbling pot of mystery meats prepared by a street vendor in Sicily, pho soups in Vancouver, London and all over Vietnam, rolled into delicate parcels with ham, garlic and parsley in cafés in Paris, served with dim sum in Birmingham and lastly, one of the most memorable dishes along my travels, served in a bun or bowl topped with extremely spicy red salsa and zesty parsley sauce from a street cart in Florence. I just found the photo of me holding the freshly purchased tripe (Sept 24th 2012), little did I know that I’d reproducing this exact dish at home, over and over, for the next 7 years!

Tripe around the world.

All Vegetarian BBQ with my girlfriends!

First, grill one large onion, and 200-300g of button mushrooms (or 2 medium portobello mushrooms) on the BBQ. Let cool and dice.
Using a fork, roughly smoosh a can of red beans with a peeled, boiled potato, salt, pepper, cumin and smoked paprika. Mix in the onions and mushrooms, 2 eggs, breadcrumbs and finely ground cashews or walnuts. Form patties (but not too much, you are not making hockey pucks) and let rest in the fridge for one hour or more. Lightly brush with the patties with olive oil before grilling on a medium heat. Only flip once if you can.

Cilantro sauce:
Blend 1 bunch cilantro, 3 large green onions, 1 garlic clove, good mayonnaise, a touch of sour cream or yogurt and salt.
Roasted veggie sauce:
Blend BBQed carrots, onions, eggplant, tomato and a raw clove of garlic and salt.
BBQ mushroom pate:
Blend BBQed mushrooms, BBQed onions, salt, breadcrumbs and cream cheese.

Fall dishes.

Pork tenderloin with a brown sugar, garlic powder, salt, pepper, paprika and cayenne rub and peas and mushrooms.

Creamy tortellini, chickpea, cauliflower soup.

Roasted lemon, marjoram and garlic chicken.

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