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@ambra I won't suggest skipping the miso in the salad, though maybe you can use tianmian/chunjang or something similar. I won't worry about miso's shelf life, as far as I know it never gets bad.

 

 

 

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~ Shai N.

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@Smithy Thanks! I find that many people are under cooking their legumes. Mealiness is defiantly not something any well cooked bean should be. In salads in particular, it is important to cook them very well since the starch hardens as it cools (just like pasta salads - you don't want al dente pasta in those). It is also true for other dishes. For example, I often see people mention peeling chickpeas for hummus making. I find it absurd, because no restaurant will go through this work. The right thing is to cook it long enough the skins are meltingly tender :)  A good slow cook, or pressure cooker are needed, as well as an overnight soak in salted water.

 

As for the salad - the dressing is a simple vinaigrette - olive oil, wine vinegar, some garlic; with some juices from the roasted peppers. Green beans or asparagus, some arugula, I like the eggs grated, but they can be sliced instead.

 

Edit to add: I noticed you said you got them frozen, this makes me think that you had green lima beans. I never cooked those (we don't get them here). I used dry mature beans here.

Edited by shain (log)
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~ Shai N.

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13 hours ago, scamhi said:

@David Ross how much of this dressing do you actually use at one time?  I find that garlic gets stronger as it sits.

Only a few tablespoons on the salad.  The recipe makes a lot of the dressing.  I like the salad to be coated but not soggy with the dressing.  It's also good as a dressing for grilled meat, seafood and chicken.  

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13 hours ago, weinoo said:

Was gonna ask the same or how many people does this recipe feed?

At least 6 people.  Originally I wrote the recipe for a company retreat I was going to and our staff was 8 people.  I cut the salad and dressing recipes by half most of the time now.

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2 hours ago, shain said:

My long time favorite soba noodle salad. With cucumber, edamame, cucumber, marinated tofu. Sauce based on sesame paste, miso, soy sauce, garlic, ginger, lemon.

Shain, All,  what kind of tofu do you use and how do you treat it before marinating or cooking?  I typically use a firm or extra firm like Nasoya then cube and dry with what seems like half a roll of paper towels before anything.  Do folks do this or have other methods?  Once I baked at a low temp for almost an hour but those little sponges were still wet.   For a stir fry I sear them in a bit of veg or peanut oil to get a crust so they don't fall apart, remove and than return  when the dish is close to complete.  Am I wasting time?  I love tofu but haven't used it enough to get comfy.  Tofu, I want to understand you.  Don't be so difficult!     

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That wasn't chicken

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@Eatmywords for this recipe I blanch the tofu in salted water and then marinate in soy sauce and sugar. See the recipe for details. Here I use either firm or soft cottony (aka block) tofu (as opposed to silken tofu, which is more like pudding in texture).

For most recipes they are interchangeable, but soft is my default. I rarely use extra firm tofu.

 

I think that in the west we missunderstand tofu, trying to treat it as meat substitute. It isn't (tvp and seitan are better at that). I like to think of tofu a bit like it was (cooked) eggs. I don't try and make it dry or crisp, I embrace its softness, chew and sponginess.

 

I most often blanch it first to remove the raw flavor and let it ahsorb some salt.

Then cook it in a flavorful sauce or marinade. Even in stir fries, I'll often add it simply stewed or marinated, without an additional stir frying step.

 

If you want it crisp, it should be coated in starch or breading and fried (this is a great preparation for it). I'd still blanch it in salted water first, this removes the raw taste and the heat makes the surface dry by evaporation, which helps the coating stick.

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~ Shai N.

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Just now, liuzhou said:

Smoked, dried, red-braised tofu are all firm and delicious. Frozen tofu is interesting, too

 

True. I like frozen tofu, I don't think of it as particularly firmer, just drier more spongey. I like it best lightly fried than cooked in sauce.

The types of firm pressed tofus you mentioned are great when cut thinly and  stir fried or stewed. I also love tofu skin and fried tofu puffs.

My point above is not that tofu should not be firm, but rather that this dehydration is done in order to allow for it to absorb sauce (as in frozen and fried tofus) or to concentrate the flavor and texture (smoked, red braised).

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~ Shai N.

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1 minute ago, shain said:

I don't think of it as particularly firmer, just drier more spongey.

I didn't mean to suggest frozen tofu was firmer; merely that it is interesting. A big favourite in hotpots, here.

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...your dancing child with his Chinese suit.

 

The Kitchen Scale Manifesto

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1 hour ago, Eatmywords said:

.  Do folks do this or have other methods?   

 

I often slice the block in half, put it in a bowl in the fridge on top of a bunch of paper towels, and put a weight on top of it (like a 28 oz. can of tomatoes). I'll drain it once or twice - amazing how much liquid comes out. I miss the little place down here that was making and selling fresh stuff, though I'm sure there are others in Chinatown doing that.

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Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

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8 minutes ago, weinoo said:

 

 I miss the little place down here that was making and selling fresh stuff, though I'm sure there are others in Chinatown doing that.

It's worth searching out.    We can buy it still warm on Clement St., and the flavor difference is noticeable. 

eGullet member #80.

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Regarding tofu...to remove excess water I use a tofu press. Got tired of wasting so many paper towels. Yes it's a "unitasker" but works great and I use it often.

 

tofu.jpeg

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"Only dull people are brilliant at breakfast" - Oscar Wilde

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4 hours ago, weinoo said:

 

I often slice the block in half, put it in a bowl in the fridge on top of a bunch of paper towels, and put a weight on top of it (like a 28 oz. can of tomatoes). I'll drain it once or twice - amazing how much liquid comes out. I miss the little place down here that was making and selling fresh stuff, though I'm sure there are others in Chinatown doing that.

 

I used to do that until I was starving one day and the paper towel supply had vanished. (I over use).  Set the block on the cutting board and pushed down firmly with flat of my palm but not so hard as to tear it up. Hunkered over position for even [ressure like kneading dough. I get medium unless the nice fresh stuff is around at a tofu shop or Asian market. 

 

@Eatmywords I am not big on frying but do enjoy tofu bit crispy outside and creamy inside . Often do it as  snack. Cut in thick dominoes. Light quick marinade. Touch pf oil, squeeze of orange, splash of soy or fish sauce, and turmeric. On a piece of oil, under the broiler till a sample is to your liking. I go 2 rack levels down from heat source. Let it cool or you will met molten tofu burn on your tongue. On deck for this weekend when I regain control of my kitchen.

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1 hour ago, BeeZee said:

Regarding tofu...to remove excess water I use a tofu press. Got tired of wasting so many paper towels. Yes it's a "unitasker" but works great and I use it often.

 

tofu.jpeg

Oooh, that looks handy and why did you have to show me this?   Given our tofu consumption (not so much) and assorted gadgets not often used, I don't know if I would win the 'need vs cabinet space' argument.  Might be worth fighting for, we'll see.  Thank you! 👍 

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That wasn't chicken

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Tangy braised chickpeas, recipe from Smitten Kitchen. The idea is to cook chickpeas in a savory broth that has the taste of traditional brisket flavors, but vegetarian. I really enjoyed it, even though I didn’t have time to let it cook as long as I should. The reheats should be great. We had potato pancakes with unsweetened applesauce along side.

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"Only dull people are brilliant at breakfast" - Oscar Wilde

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Raw tomato sauce on hot spaghetti.    This is a recipe I "stole" 20 years ago from Flea Street Cafe in Menlo Park.    Tomatoes, onion, garlic, basil, mint, balsamic, sherry wine vinegar, soy sauce, red pepper flakes.   A hot weather standard in tomato season.  

1429136335_ScreenShot2020-10-01at6_23_30PM.thumb.png.6879e7cce7eac21970f0b57fa9d5c234.png

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eGullet member #80.

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A couple of dinners and a parenting fail. 

 

Chopped salad and 3 (Bantam) Egg plain Omelette with Sriracha

20201002_184842.thumb.jpg.9455a84f526c8ef3418d3aa2d58d8a5a.jpg

 

The Good Stuff. 

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The Parenting Fail.

Chicken Stirfry with Bamboo, Thai red curry paste, Soy, Chili, assorted veg, noodles. It was so spicy.

My 7 year old ate it in silence with a lot of water. I was so pleased. The fail comes in later when I ate it myself... and thought how did he eat that, its at the upper end for me 🤔

20201002_184817.thumb.jpg.234fd71abf60d47e01e4a4d545fb4315.jpg

 

And then I remembered the promise - he got his switch if he ate his dinner nicely 🤦‍♀️

 

Edited by CantCookStillTry (log)
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