Food Blog

Lemony dill summer noodle bowl

We buy tofu from a local vendor at the farmers’ market, and they don’t last through the week. Today’s preparation is a simple one: pan-fried steaks (olive oil + pinch of salt in a cast iron skillet), sliced and arranged on top of the rest.

For the noodles I opted for soba. While the water boiled and the noodled cooked, I sauteed julienned zucchini and thinly sliced yellow bell pepper with olive oil, sliced garlic, and crushed red pepper. To that I added thinly chopped cooked collards (yesterday’s leftovers) and strips of lemon zest, then finished with dill when I mixed in the soba noodles.

Finished it off with a light twist on my favorite tahini sauce: juice of ½ a lemon, tablespoon or so of minced fresh dill, olive oil, tahini, a splash of hot sauce, a sprinkling of nutritional yeast, and water to whisk to the consistency I wanted (thin enough to pour, but thick enough to cling to the food).

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Collard rolls with tofu and fresh salsa

Tofu, nectarine salsa, and collard rolls

Tonight’s dinner…

Baked tofu with a spicy ginger-sesame marinade (1 tbsp fresh grated ginger, several shakes crushed red pepper, rice vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil, and a little bit of coconut nectar)

Mushrooms sauteed with red onions, ginger, crushed red pepper, a pinch of allspice, and fresh thyme, mixed with brown rice and stuffed into blanched whole collard leaves

Tomato-nectarine salsa with red onion and flowering cilantro (finished with a pinch of salt and a splash of white wine vinegar)

Adding thyme to mushroom mixture
Fresh collard greens

Filling greens with rice and mushrooms
Nectarine-tomato salsa

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Tofu parmigiana with braised kale and polenta

Dudes, this was very good, and very easy. Polenta, pssh. Braised kale with minced garlic–cake. The sauce was simple marinara: green garlic, yellow onion, red pepper flakes, thyme, oregano, fresh basil, and tomato puree. The tofu was baked, dredged with olive oil and a breadcrumb mixture with salt and oregano. After it baked on both sides, I added a layer of sauce below and on top and added a topping–more breadcrumbs, plus hemp seeds and nutritional yeast–and baked a while longer. So simple, and so tasty.

Food Blog None Vegan MoFo

Tofu chimichurri (baked) with rice pilaf and garlicky sauteed spinach

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On Sundays, I pick up two cubes of fresh, locally made tofu at the farmers’ market. This comes in a baggie and does not last long, so I’m always making different tofu dishes on Monday/Tuesday evenings. And on weeknights, the boyfriend and I discuss dinner via text–today’s suggestion was tofu and soba noodles. A good combination.

So I made:

  • Baked tofu in homemade spicy teriyaki marinade
  • Shredded raw vegetable salad with cashew-sesame dressing
  • Soba dressed simply with chives and toasted nori

That’s two sauces, with a splash of things in noodles that isn’t really a sauce.

First, the teriyaki tofu.

Marinade (which I did not actually measure, so this is approximate):

  • Two cloves garlic, microplaned
  • 2" piece of ginger, microplaned
  • One tablespoon of toasted sesame oil
  • Two tablespoons soy sauce or tamari
  • One tablespoon mirin
  • One teaspoon agave nectar or maple syrup
  • One teaspoon hot sauce

Other ingredients:

  • About half a cup of thinly sliced red onion (I used a leftover half of a large onion, sliced into quarter moons)
  • Half a pound of fresh tofu, sliced to fit in your baking dish (I put mine in an 8" glass square dish, which fits four thick slices perfectly)
  • Black sesame seeds to cover

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Mix the marinade in the bottom of the baking dish, then toss in the onions to cover with sauce. Move aside the onions and dredge the tofu slices so each side is covered and place them in the baking dish, with the saucy onions gently layered on top. Sprinkle with black sesame seeds. Bake for about 20 minutes, flip, and bake another 20 minutes.

Shredded vegetable salad is up next.

You can make this with any vegetables you like, though firmer ones hold up better–more crunch, less wilt. This is the balance I had:

  • Red cabbage, about ¾ of a medium head (it’s what I had sitting around) – thinly shredded
  • Half a long cucumber, julienned to the core (I tossed out the seeds)
  • One carrot, julienned
  • One red bell pepper, seeded, quartered, and sliced thinly

Dressing (again, all approximate, because I’m a degenerate):

  • Quarter cup raw cashew butter (toasted would add too much of a strong flavor–soaked and pureed cashews would do instead)
  • Tablespoon seasoned rice wine vinegar
  • Teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • Splash soy sauce or tamari
  • Water to thin out to desired consistency

I just whisk this all together in a little bowl and pour over the shredded vegetables, then use tongs to combine.