Monday, June 11, 2007

Spicy Tofu with Eggplants and Peppers

1 lb firm tofu

1 large eggplant, peeled and chopped

Course salt

1 Tb olive oil

1 onion, chopped

2 scallions, white part only, chopped

3 garlic cloves, minced

one 1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and grated

1 red bell pepper, roasted, peeled and chopped (To roast, broil or bake at high temp for 5-8 minutes)

1 yellow bell pepper, roasted, peeled and chopped

1 jalapeno pepper, cored, seeded, and minced

2 tsp whole mustard seeds, toasted

1/4 cup torn fresh basil

1/4 cup fresh cilantro

2 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp ground coriander

1 tsp ground turmeric

1 Tb curry powder

1 Tb tomato paste

1 Tb fresh lemon juice

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Place the tofu in a pie plate. Cover with several sheets of paper towel, and put a heavy pot on top. Set aside for at least an hour. When it has been pressed, discard the liquid and cut the tofu into small (1/2 inch cubes).

Line a colander with paper towels and place the eggplant inside. Sprinkle with salt and toss gently. Set aside for 30 minutes.

Heat the oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion, scallions, garlic, and ginger. Lower the heat to medium and sauté until soft, about 8 minutes. Rinse the eggplant lightly, just enough to get the salt off the surface, and pat it dry with fresh paper towels. Add to the skillet along with the bell peppers, jalapeno pepper, mustard seeds, basil, cilantro, cumin, coriander, turmeric, curry powder, tomato paste, lemon juice, and pressed tofu. Sauté, stirring often, until the eggplant is cooked through, about 7 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

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