What To Do With Tofu?

I finally had a Tuesday evening free for a change–usually it’s a gym night but I had an appointment in the morning before work so I just worked out before that appointment. It’s nice having some time in the morning to get my workout out of the way because I’d much rather have my evenings free. I just can’t commit to getting up super early all the time to do that, so it’s just a once in awhile thing.

A nice calorie burn for an early morning workout (when I am groggy and so not awake).

I planned on having a friend over for dinner recently as a thank you for kitty-sitting while Michael and I were in Texas. It was really just an excuse to invite her over and make her dinner. 🙂 She does so much for everyone in her life and I love having a chance to thank her in a way she’d like. She LOVES all of Michael’s cooking and had a special request: his fish n’ chips. It had been a long time since we’d made it, maybe sixth months or longer? I got all the stuff for dinner and then she had to cancel. An elderly friend of hers fell and had to go to the ER. Thankfully, her friend was okay.

We rescheduled and I wanted to try this recipe.  I already had some tofu in the fridge for another recipe I never made (miso soup) and decided to try this recipe because another blogger recommended it highly. It sounded really good to me.

While I waited for Star to come over, I checked on my garden and cut some fresh kale to go with dinner. My veggies are doing very well. The kale is still awesome, the lettuce is holding on. Unfortunately the spinach is dead and gone. The tomatoes are just starting to get little itty bitty babies on it and the jalapenos are starting as well:

I made a salad with lettuce from our garden and I added some raw broccoli and cauliflower to it. When Star came over she brought her absolutely delicious bean salad and I tossed that on top of my green salad (perfect). Then I got to work.

Poor Michael wasn’t much help in the kitchen–he was a complete zombie because he’d biked 97 miles in the last 7 days and had clearly just hit a wall. I gave him the task of cooking the Israeli Couscous.

While he did that, I made the sweet chili lime sauce. It was super easy. I added more garlic (2 instead of 1) and next time I’d probably add a third clove to it.

Star showed me how to press the tofu and then she cut it into small pieces while I got the other things going. I’ve never worked with tofu before and had no idea what to expect, what was normal, how long to cook it, etc. She definitely helped a lot with that.

At first I was going to sautee some kale from the garden and mix that into the couscous but there was just too much going on. I decided we didn’t need a salad and couscous and tofu AND kale. So no kale and it was fine without it. I started cooking the tofu in the skillet with sesame oil (it smelled so good) and then eventually poured in the chili sauce.

It smelled fantastic as it cooked down! I was so excited to eat dinner!

I dished it up on the couscous (no butter or oil added) and sprinkled sesame seeds on top. The three of us went outside to eat dinner on the back porch. It was a warm night after an 85+ degree day and the breeze was pleasant. We ALL LOVED the recipe. Hands down, this is the best recipe I’ve tried in a very, very long time. It was the kind of meal I didn’t want to end. It was the kind of meal that I was SO glad I worked out that day for because I had second helpings! And I don’t usually do that.

In fact, all three of us had seconds–even Michael who doesn’t like tofu! I kept my second helping to just more salad with some leftover tofu on top and skipped extra couscous.

All in all, I loved every single bite of this recipe and Michael and I are already looking forward to making it again with chicken or shrimp. We both think it would work well with either of those things. While we were sitting outside eating, Fat Kitty jumped onto the counter to watch us (bad kitty!).

Try this recipe. Seriously. SO good. I was kinda bummed there weren’t enough leftovers for me to have for lunch the next day….

We sat outside chatting as the sun started to set, enjoying the late summer evening. I brought out strawberries for dessert and Star had the brilliant idea to dip them in my Wax Orchards chocolate sauce (it’s low calorie and diabetic-friendly). She’s a genius.

How good does that looked?

Give this recipe a try, with tofu or chicken it doesn’t matter–it tasted so good and I will definitely be making it again.

QUESTION: What is your favorite way to use tofu? 

Sizzle Pie

I can’t remember the last time I bought my lunch downtown when I was at work. It’s definitely a rare thing and if I tried to think really hard, I’d guess it was last summer when I was on the Slow Carb diet and I needed some non-carb food to add to my salad because I was famished. I think I bought some chicken from a Greek food cart. The memory is foggy because it really is a rare thing to splurge on. For one, I don’t want to use the calories. Second, it’s too expensive to eat out for lunch!

With Michael being home unemployed right now I thought it would be a nice thing for us to get together for a lunch date. About once a week I have an hour lunch and we made a date. Michael came downtown and picked me up from the office and we walked over to Sizzle Pie for lunch.

Sizzle Pie is a pizza joint in the old Rocco’s Pizza across the street from Powell’s Books. Apparently the pizzas are named after metal bands but I have no idea about that!

The walls were painted a flat black and the jukebox in the corner was playing music you wouldn’t normally hear in a restaurant but it was a cool vibe.

I got the Ol’ Dirty pizza. It was a pizza with ricotta, truffle oil (my new favorite thing), a few slices of salami and pepperoncinis. I got the lunch special–a slice and a salad. I definitely could have survived on just the slice but the salad just sounded really good to me.

And I was glad I got it. I ordered the “Caligula” Caesar salad with vegan dressing. I’m not vegan, but I LOVED the salad dressing. It was so tasty!

We sat at the bar facing the street and chatted while we ate our slices and sipped our Coke Zeros. The corner is super busy–10th and Burnside–and it’s a good spot for people watching.

The pizza was decent for a “by the slice” kind of joint.  It was no Apizza Scholl’s but it’s a good spot to grab a quick lunch after browsing Powell’s Books for hours. I definitely went over my calories for lunch but it was a nice splurge. It was nice hanging out with Michael for lunch and taking a little break from work, too.

It was a nice, sunny day after days of pouring rain and windy weather. I want to hold onto hope that spring is almost here. I am finally seeing some evidence that spring has arrived!

Maya Update: Maya went to the vet recently and had her incisions checked from the previous week’s extractions. One has healed completely and another one is still healing. She’s got some more antibiotics to take and is still on wet food. Hopefully she’ll be back on the regular food soon.

She’s getting easier to catch and dare I say–she’s actually enjoying it! She often lets me pet her and hold her now without being “squirmy kitty”!

All in all, it was a good day with my man, my kitties and good food.

QUESTION: Has spring sprung in your neck of the woods yet?