Friday, March 8, 2013

Tofu, Asparagus, and Red Pepper Stir-fry with Quinoa

I haven't cooked with quinoa in awhile, so it seemed time to stock another bulk bag of this complete protein in my pantry.  There's a reason the Incas considered quinoa to be sacred: it really just might be a perfect food.  Iron, fiber, potassium, zinc, folate... I could go on and on. And don't believe the hype that eating quinoa is going to hurt farmers; here's a good counter-argument to that claim.

For the dressing:
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons dark sesame oil
  • Dash of crushed red pepper
For the stir-fry:
  • 1 and 1/2 cups water
  • 1 and 1/2 cups uncooked quinoa
  • 1 tablespoon dark sesame oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 2 minced garlic cloves
  • 2 cups red bell pepper strips
  • 2 cups sliced mushrooms
  • 2 cups (1-inch) sliced asparagus
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 12 ounces lite firm tofu
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1. To prepare the dressing, whisk together the rice vinegar, soy sauce, 2 teaspoons sesame oil, and crushed red pepper; set aside.

2. To prepare the stir-fry, bring the water to a boil in a small saucepan.  Add the quinoa; cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 10 minutes.  Remove from heat and let stand for 10 minutes, covered.  Fluff with a fork and set aside.

3. Meanwhile, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon sesame oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion and garlic; stir-fry for 5 minutes.  Drain the tofu and cut into cubes.  Add to the pan, along with the bell pepper, mushrooms, asparagus, and salt.  Stir-fry for 3 minutes.  Stir in the dressing mixture.

4. Spoon 1/2 cup quinoa onto each of 6 plates, and top each serving with 1 cup stir-fry.  Sprinkle evenly with the sesame seeds.

Nutrition Info:
6 servings (1 cup stir-fry, 1/2 cup quinoa, 1 teaspoon sesame seeds), Calories 273

Tasting Notes:
This recipe felt straight off the menu of a macro vegan restaurant - a heaping bowl of vegetables, barely cooked, over wonderfully healthy and nutty quinoa. The quinoa and sesame oil made the dish stand out, and while the sesame seeds on top were nice, I would toast them next time for better flavor. I loved parts of the stir-fry and not others. Specifically, the tofu and mushrooms are definite keepers. I would swap out the asparagus and bell pepper, however, for different veggies; snow peas and bamboo shoots would have been my preference.


No comments:

Post a Comment