30 day semi-healthy challenge Healthy Salad Vegetarian

30 Semi-Healthy Days – Day 4: Chipotle Tofu Salad

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I bought some new camera lighting equipment this week that came in the mail last night, and I can’t tell you what a difference it makes. I have always struggled with doing any weeknight blogging because it is typically dark out by the time I get home, and I don’t have any good artificial lighting. All that has changed now! I bought this enormous studio light that takes up pretty much our entire dining room (which isn’t saying all that much because the room is tiny). If there was anything that we needed, it was MORE enormous stuff that doesn’t fit into our house. It really was one of the best decisions I have made though. I had my doubts that it would really help, but I am so glad I decided to bite the bullet and spend the money. Cooking and blogging tonight was totally stress free, which is as it should be since this is something that I enjoy doing. Sometimes I get all worked up about it though so anything I can do to make things flow a little bit smoother is great. 

I decided to make this chipotle tofu salad just on a whim based on what I knew I already had in the fridge and the pantry. I always have beans and corn because those are my faves, and I knew that I had tofu and some salad fixings in the fridge as well as the leftover yogurt sauce from the tacos that I made the other night. All of these things make for a delicious salad. I have had my fair share of struggles with tofu in the past, but I think that I have finally found a method of cooking it to the perfect texture (for me anyways). I know that tofu is not everyone’s favourite thing, and I never used to like it either. I started eating it more when I made the switch to vegetarian a couple of years ago. My number one favourite way to have tofu is in a curry dish from a Thai restaurant. It just soaks up all of the sauce. The first time I had Thai curry with tofu was the beginning of my love for tofu. It has an unfortunate texture and really doesn’t have a taste, but it is so perfect for soaking up all kinds of delicious sauces.

I can’t tell you the number of failed attempts at cooking tofu at home I have had until I came across this method. I start by draining the water in the tofu by placing it between loads of paper towels with a plate on top for about 30 minutes. Then I cut it into cubes and bake it for about 30 minutes in a 350 degree oven. Finally, I stir fry it in some peanut oil for about 10 minutes. You could also just bake it for more time if you want to skip the stir fry process, but it will not be quite as crispy on the outside. It sounds like a lot of work, but if you have the time it is completely worth it. You will end up with perfect little cubes of tofu that are crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. It never fails. 

If you are a meat eater and don’t care for the tofu option, I also stir fried some beef to go with this salad, and my husband raved about it.

The one thing that my salad was missing was avocado because I was out of it, but I included it in the recipe below.

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Chipotle Tofu Salad
1 package extra firm tofu
4 Tablespoons peanut oil
1 can chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
1 cup Greek yogurt
Juice of 1 lime
1/2 jalapeno pepper, diced
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
2 Tablespoons white wine vinegar
1 Tablespoon honey
Salt & pepper, to taste
Romaine lettuce (I just used a storebought package)
1 bell pepper (any kind), chopped
3 green onions, sliced
1/2 cucumber, sliced
1 avocado, sliced
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can corn, drained and rinsed

Drain the water from the tofu by placing it between paper towels with a plate or dish on top for about 30 minutes.

Cut tofu into cubes and place on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees F.

Meanwhile, combine the greek yogurt, 2 Tablespoons of the chipotle sauce from the can of chipotle peppers, lime juice, jalapeno, cilantro, vinegar and honey with a whisk until blended.

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Add salt & pepper to taste.

Chop all of the veggies and combine with the romaine lettuce, beans and corn in a large bowl.

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Once the tofu is baked, heat the peanut oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. I added about 1 Tablespoon of the chipotle sauce to the oil as well to give the tofu some spice.

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Add the tofu to the skillet and stir fry on all sides for 2 or 3 minutes or until browned.

Top salad with tofu and the chipotle dressing.

30 Semi-Healthy Days - Day 4: Chipotle Tofu Salad
Total time: 
 
Ingredients
  • 1 package extra firm tofu
  • 4 Tablespoons peanut oil
  • 1 can chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  • 1 cup Greek yogurt
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • ½ jalapeno pepper, diced
  • 1 bunch cilantro, chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon honey
  • Salt & pepper, to taste
  • Romaine lettuce (I just used a storebought package)
  • 1 bell pepper (any kind), chopped
  • 3 green onions, sliced
  • ½ cucumber, sliced
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can corn, drained and rinsed
Instructions
  1. Drain the water from the tofu by placing it between paper towels with a plate or dish on top for about 30 minutes.
  2. Cut tofu into cubes and place on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees F.
  3. Meanwhile, combine the greek yogurt, 2 Tablespoons of the chipotle sauce from the can of chipotle peppers, lime juice, jalapeno, cilantro, vinegar and honey with a whisk until blended.
  4. Add salt & pepper to taste.
  5. Chop all of the veggies and combine with the romaine lettuce, beans and corn in a large bowl.
  6. Once the tofu is baked, heat the peanut oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. I added about 1 Tablespoon of the chipotle sauce to the oil as well to give the tofu some spice.
  7. Add the tofu to the skillet and stir fry on all sides for 2 or 3 minutes or until browned.
  8. Top salad with tofu and the chipotle dressing.

 

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