Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Cuminy Greens and Tofu (Vegan Saag Paneer)

I made this one night when I was craving saag paneer. It recreates some of my favorite elements of the dish--mellow cuminy spinach goodness--without the dairy and long-term commitment of traditional recipes. I can't say it's an exact match, but when I found myself craving it today at work, I knew I'd done something good. We were too hungry to find the camera and take a picture--you'll have to picture the beautiful greens and little tofu cubes.

Cuminy Greens and Tofu (evocative of Saag Paneer)
1 package firm tofu
1/2 C kombucha (or 2 Tb apple cider vinegar with enough apple juice to make 1/2C)
1 tsp miso soup base (I used yellow)

1 tsp olive oil
1 Tb cumin seeds, whole
2 tsp coriander seeds, whole
1/2 onion, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced

1 box of frozen spinach, thawed
2 1/2 C shredded cabbage
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp garam masala
1 carrot, shredded

Press tofu for 10-20 minutes. While pressing, stir together miso and kombucha (1/2 an inch of grated ginger would be a nice addition here). Cut tofu into cubes and toss with marinade. Allow to sit as long as you can.

Rub olive oil all over a non-stick pan; bring pan to medium-high heat. Add seeds and allow to toast about thirty seconds, or until they start smelling good. Reduce heat to medium. Add onion and cook until onions are translucent. Add the tofu and garlic.

When the tofu is beginning to get golden, add remaining ingredients and cook until cabbage is tender. Serve over rice.

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