Meera Sodha’s vegan recipe for aubergine and silken tofu with tahini and crispy chilli spring onions | Vegan food and drink

a Much of my ability to put dinner on the table, sometimes at the last minute, relies on the genius of good off-the-shelf ingredients. Specifically, silken tofu, tahini, and crispy he’s talking about chili, all of which are hallmarks of today’s recipes and great friends in the kitchen. A good quality silken tofu is a texture delight that is barely lumpy. It’s gentle, flavorful, and soothing. It pairs well with creamy, hot eggplant and is very receptive to most big savory flavors like ginger, soy and crunchy chili.

Eggplant and silken tofu with tahini, crispy chili and green onions

The oven and pre-cooked ingredients do a lot of the hard work here. You can buy silken tofu and crispy chili at most large supermarkets. If you can’t do that, try a Chinese restaurant or online. Serve with rice (jasmine or sticky rice) and light soy sauce.You will need two large baking trays.

Preparation 15 minutes
cooking 45 minutes
serve Four

rapeseed oil
½ teaspoon fine sea salt
3 eggplants
(900g), cut into 2.5cm thick discs
Firm tofu 300g x 1 packdrain and leave whole – I use Clearspring, most widely available in supermarkets
2cm piece of gingerr, peeled and finely chopped
Light soy sauce 1 tablespoon
2 tsp white wine vinegar
6 spring onions
trimmed and finely sliced
2 tablespoons of crispy chili-in-oil – Laoganma brand is my favorite
½ tablespoon tahini

Heat the oven to 200C (180C fan)/390F/gas 6 and line the two oven trays with baking paper (mine is reusable). Mix 4 tablespoons of oil and salt in a small bowl, then brush the oil on both sides of the eggplant slices and arrange them in a single layer on the tray. Place in the oven and bake for 20 minutes, then remove the tofu tray. Let stand another 10-15 minutes until the eggplants are golden brown, then remove them as well.

While the tofu and eggplant are grilling, make the sauce. Place 6 tablespoons of oil in a small saucepan, add ginger, soy sauce, vinegar, green onion, crispy chili and tahini, bring to a quick boil and remove from heat.

When the tofu has cooled down, cut it into 1 cm thick slices. Alternating 2 slices of eggplant per slice of tofu on a rimmed or high-sided platter, smeared with onsen leek oil and served with rice.

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