I like to think that on most days, I eat pretty well. As in, balancing proteins and carbs with lots of fresh vegetables. And sticking to moderation. But put me in a room full of cheese and I'm a lost cause. Or worse, put me in a 675,000-square-foot convention center full of cheese and I won't even know I'm well past the point of fullness.
Earlier in July I attended the Summer Fancy Food Show, a trade show for anyone working in the food and beverage industry to discover new, interesting products. It's a great show and I always end up learning a lot about both local products and international products that have yet to find distributors in the US. The show is also a sampler's paradise. Everywhere you turn a producer is offering an enticing food to sample, and many of these foods happened to be cheeses. (Or maybe I'm just magnetically drawn to cheese booths. Who knows?)
This is all to say that by the end of two days at the trade show, I was in dire need of food that was very light and healthy. Fortunately, I was working on a campaign with Wildwood Foods to try out their products for a post. Now, I've actually been using various Wildwood fresh and baked tofu for over a year, since discovering them at my local co-op, so I was really excited to try out the tofu in a simple summer salad.
The product I used for the salad was the High Protein Super Firm Tofu, and organic, Non-GMO-verified tofu made with sprouted soybeans. It came in a vacuum pack instead of the conventional tubs, which I love because the lower amount of water means lighter grocery loads to carry. (Every little bit helps when the store is a 15-minute walk from home!)
For the leafy greens portion of the salad, I just dressed mesclun greens with cider vinegar and olive oil. As for the tofu, I cut it into 1-inch cubes, seared them with ginger and a good amount of garlic, and added a light sauce made with sesame oil, soy sauce, rice vinegar, and honey. A bit tangy, a bit salty, a bit sweet. It was an ideal healthy summer meal after two days of gluttony.
A few days later, I also served this salad to friends who were visiting and I'm happy to report it got rave reviews, even from those who don't normally like tofu. And since the salad is so easy to make in big batches to serve to groups, it just might become a cookout or picnic staple this summer.
What would be your ideal summer dinner recipe when using Wildwood Foods tofu?
Garlic and Sesame Tofu Salad
- 1 pound Wildwood Super Firm Tofu
- 3 tablespoons cider vinegar
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 4 ounces spring mix salad or baby romaine
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon minced ginger
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons sesame oil
- 2 teaspoons rice vinegar
- 2 teaspoons honey or agave nectar
- 1 teaspoon white sesame seeds
- Drain and rinse the tofu and pat dry with a clean kitchen towel. Cut the tofu into 1-inch cubes and press gently between two more clean kitchen towels to remove excess water.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the cider vinegar and olive oil. Using your hands, toss the salad greens in a large bowl with the dressing. Set aside.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, sesame oil, rice vinegar, and honey.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and ginger and gently cook just until aromatic, about 30 seconds. Add the tofu and spread it out into a single even layer on the pan. Allow the tofu to sear undisturbed for about 1 minute. Stirring occasionally, cook for another 3 minutes until all or most of the sides are golden. Add the soy sauce mixture and stir until the tofu is well-coated. Transfer the tofu to the large salad bowl and serve. (Alternatively, divide the tossed salad greens into individual bowls and top off with the tofu.)