Simplified stir fry

Last summer, I partnered with my friend and food blogger, Callie of Luv Cooks, to bring you an essential kitchen tool, the chef's knife, and a spicy sweet tofu stir fry recipe. As someone who doesn't eat much tofu or stir fry, I loved this dish! 

In January, Woody and I were limiting sugar and eating lots of veggies, and I decided to experiment a bit with this recipe. I'm certainly not claiming to have the culinary chops to compete with a kitchen-savvy wonder such as Callie, but I wanted to share my take on the recipe because its a great, simplified option if you're looking for something with fewer steps and ingredients.

This simplified stir fry has become a staple in our house. Woody loves it, it's healthy, it makes good leftovers, and it's easy to make. Trust me, as someone who is still learning my way around the kitchen, when I say "easy," I mean EASY.  

IMG_1876.jpeg

Ingredients

2-3 bell peppers sliced (I always use red, yellow, and orange in some combination)
2 broccoli crowns cut into florets
1 white onion chopped (or half if it's a large onion)
3 carrots sliced diagonally
(love these veggie prep videos for other kitchen novices out there!)
2 Tbsp Olive oil for cooking the veggies
Uncle Ben's brown rice (we usually make 4 servings)
Butter for the rice

Sauce

1/2 cup soy sauce
1 tsp ground ginger
2 Tbsp honey
2 Tbsp corn starch
(If you like less sauce, just cut each amount in half)

directions

  1. Start cooking the rice. Get the rice to the "simmer for 20 minutes" stage and then go to the next step.
  2.  In a small mixing bowl, whisk together all of the sauce ingredients, then set them aside.
  3. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat, add oil and swirl to coat the bottom of your pan. Then add veggies and toss to coat. Cook for 5-7 minutes, stirring often. When the vegetables have some color and have softened a bit (just feel them with your spoon or spatula; they should have some "give" to them), add the sauce, and stir. It should bubble and thicken.
  4. Cook the mixture for 3-5 minutes, stirring often. When veggies are cooked to your preferred doneness, remove from heat. 
  5. Scoop cooked rice onto plates, add salt and pepper, and flatten.
  6. Spoon veggies onto rice and serve your delicious, simplified meal!


What are your favorite easy, go-to recipes?

Valentine’s Luv & Strawberry Swirl Marshmallows

Valentine's Day is almost here, and I for one am loving this sweet season! There are so many good ways to celebrate, and I am excited to share one with you today through a special treat! 

Strawberry Swirl Marshmallow from  Luv Cooks ,  Happy Valentine's Day card  from the  TLK Shop ,  Mug  and linen from  West Elm ,  Pink Hot Chocolate  from Sur La Table. 

Strawberry Swirl Marshmallow from Luv CooksHappy Valentine's Day card from the TLK ShopMug and linen from West ElmPink Hot Chocolate from Sur La Table. 

For those of you who have been visiting The LovingKind for a while, you may recall that I am a cook-in-training. I choose not to claim that I am "not a cook" or a "bad cook" so "in training" seems to fit the bill! This is why I decided to team up with my fearless, cooking friend, Callie of Luv Cooks for a series of collaborated posts (see posts one and two on The LovingKind, and one and two on Luv Cooks)!

Callie of  Luv Cooks

Callie of Luv Cooks

I love the way Callie cooks because she is brave to constantly try new things, and she always includes the most important ingredient in any recipelove for those she is serving. I've seen this shine through in her "honeymoon inspired" chocolate pomegranate cookies she brought to our cookie swap, the handmade caramels she gave as favors at her NYE/wedding celebration party, and the skillet-baked cornbread she made for a weeknight dinner with friends. 

Not to mention, Callie loves Valentine's Day just like I do, so the focus of our third installment was obviousa Valentine-worthy celebratory treat! I hope you will feel Callie's heart and sparkle come straight through the screen, and also check out my post for Luv Cooks! 

Here's Callie!


The LovingKind_Luv Cooks Strawberry Swirl Marshmallows

Essential cooking tool: wooden spoon
recipe: Strawberry Swirl Marshamallows


True love, they say, is a "many splendored thing" (cue Andy Williams). Love in the kitchen, I say, comes in many splendored, shapes and sizes. 

It looks like slow-simmered, homemade chicken broth, carefully watched into the wee hours until bones and onion are discarded, then stirred into carrots and celery; noodles boiled al dente, chicken shredded and topped; served steaming to the one who needs to be soothed. It looks like a crazy day, schedule full to the brim, halted when the one who makes your heart skip a beat walks in the door with just the spice you needed. It looks like early morning scrambled eggs, whisked with gusto, while French press coffee fills the cool morning air with velvety richness.

To me, love also looks like a wooden spoon. Ironically, and of all of my kitchen tools, they are the first to show the stains of recipes gone by- smudges of sauce, caramelly burnt sugars, lowly hot water spots. But they are by far essential for oh-so-many kitchen taskssautéing vegetables; guarding a boiling water pot so it doesn’t overflow; scraping browned bits off the bottom of a braised pan.

The LovingKind_Luv Cooks Strawberry Swirl Marshmallows
The LovingKind_Luv Cooks Strawberry Swirl Marshmallows
The LovingKind_Luv Cooks Strawberry Swirl Marshmallows

My beautiful sister Caroline actually gave me my current favorite wooden spoon that she had monogrammed just for me. It’s luv cooks logo reminds me of the intention and care she put into buying it for me every time I stir. But for those of you looking to purchase your own wooden spoon, I adore sturdy, well handled varieties that stand the test of time. This olive wood version at Williams Sonoma is spot-on, but bamboo is also a solid option, as these tools tend to be lightweight and more flexible. Birch wood can be an excellent choice too!

In this recipe for marshmallows, a well built wooden spoon is key to the best marshmallow experience you can have. Make sure you watch your sugar mixture and stir it frequently so the sugar dissolves. Then, stifle your desire to stir as your mixture reaches the perfect boiling point (240 degrees). Finally, the stirring comes full circle as you fold in your egg whites. Its a beautiful, stirring process (wink wink).

All in all, the wooden spoon may be the most loved kitchen tool I own. Yet, it really is the one that shows wear the most. It hit me a few days ago that maybe that’s how real love actually is- messy sometimes; but always steady; always helpful; always solid; always beckoning us to stir more deeply into the good that awaits.

May you enjoy this sweet treat, and this sweet week, with the ones you luv.

The LovingKind_Luv Cooks Strawberry Swirl Marshmallows
The LovingKind_Luv Cooks Strawberry Swirl Marshmallows
The LovingKind_Luv Cooks Strawberry Swirl Marshmallows
The LovingKind_Luv Cooks Strawberry Swirl Marshmallows

Strawberry Swirl Marshmallows

What you will need:

For the marshmallows:

1/2 to 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 cup cold filtered water, divided
2 tablespoons plus 2 1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large egg whites
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon almond extract

For the strawberry swirl:

1 pint fresh strawberries, halved and tops removed
1 tablespoon sugar

What You Will Do:

  1. Spray the bottom and sides of a 9x13-inch baking pan well with cooking spray. Scoop about ¼ to ½ cup confectioners’ sugar into the pan and toss the sugar around to coat the top and sides of the pan, discarding extra sugar.
  2. In a large bowl, pour ½ cup cold water over the gelatin. Let it sit for a few minutes to soften.
  3. Put halved strawberries and sugar into a blender to sit while you prepare the marshmallows.
  4. In a heavy saucepan, cook the granulated sugar, corn syrup, remaining ½ cup water, and salt over low heat. Stir the mixture with a wooden spoon until all of the sugar is dissolved. Increase heat to medium, and bring the mixture to a boil. Cook without stirring the mixture until it reaches 240 degrees on a candy thermometer. Remove pan from heat, and pour sugar mixture over gelatin mixture (don’t worry if you now have a gelatin dome- just keep blending), stirring until dissolved.
  5. Beat mixture with a mixer on high speed until fluffy and tripled in size, about seven to ten minutes. Once it gets so sticky that your beaters aren’t really working anymore- stop there!
  6. In the bowl of a separate stand mixer, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form, about 2 minutes. Beat in vanilla and almond extract.
  7. Add egg white mixture gently into the sugar mixture with your wooden spoon until combined and still fluffy.
  8. Pour the mixture into prepared pan, using an oiled spatula (or spoon) to spread the mixture evenly.
  9. Make the strawberry puree: Blend the strawberries in blender until smooth.
  10. Use a wooden spoon to dallop strawberry puree in center, then corners of pan. Using a toothpick, make a pretty swirl pattern, gently combining the strawberry puree with the marshmallows.
  11. Chill in the fridge for a few hours and up to a day. I found it helpful to spray a piece of plastic wrap with cooking spray, then stretch it over the top of the marshmallows. 
  12. To remove the marshmallows, run a knife around the edges of the pan. Cut marshmallows in to a grid of your desired size. Use a spatula or knife to remove. Enjoy!
We decided to bag up a few of our marshmallows to share with friends!  Hi, You card  from the  TLK Shop .

We decided to bag up a few of our marshmallows to share with friends! Hi, You card from the TLK Shop.

The LovingKind_Luv Cooks Strawberry Swirl Marshmallows
The LovingKind_Luv Cooks Strawberry Swirl Marshmallows

Extra fun:

As you can see, Mattye and I fully embraced the celebratory nature of Valentine's Day treats with a fun white and dark chocolate dipping station! All you need is some melted chocolate; we melted Divine 70% ginger chocolate bar and white baking chocolate. Once dipped, sprinkle the mallows to your heart's content (we loved the Valentine-themed sprinkles from Sur La Table)! This is the one case where double-dipping is officially allowed! 

Also, if you have extra strawberries from the puree, they are great for chocolate and sprinkle dipping too!

Happy early Valentine's Day!

spatula savvy

As a newlywed, cooking regularly for two has been both a challenge and an adventure for me. Figuring I'm not the only newlywed gal who feels this way, I asked my talented friend and food blogger, Callie of Luv Cooks, to be a guest on the TLK blog! She is joining us for a series of posts featuring great recipes for newlyweds (or longtime-weds!) and essential tools for every kitchen, while I am guest posting on her blog with ideas on how to make the most of mealtime in your marriage. In between posts, make sure to check out all the other fabulous goodness on Callie's blog. Her recipes are sure to delight, and you'll be encouraged by her sincere heart for treating people with Southern hospitality and grace in and out of the kitchen! 

We got a little hungry while cooking so we decided to turn one of the ingredients into our "appetizer!"

We got a little hungry while cooking so we decided to turn one of the ingredients into our "appetizer!"

And now, I am excited to share with you the second post by Callie of Luv Cooks!


Essential Cooking Tool: Spatula

Recipe: Chicken Divan

 

There are few tools in my kitchen that I use as much as a spatula. From folding melted chocolate into butter for brownies, scraping the sides of a mixing bowl to ease out those last bits of cookie dough, to smoothing out the top of banana bread batter, there are so many uses for such a space-saving tool!

And not only can a spatula be used over and over and over, it saves time in the kitchen. Stirring, folding, mixing, scooping; it makes those every day kitchen taskslike getting all of the tomato paste or leftover black beans out of a caneasier and more efficient. Plus, even when you are doing swanky things like smoothing out cake frosting or fine-tuning your egg salad, a great spatula makes that easy too.

When it comes to purchasing a spatula, either a silicone or rubber one will work well. Both are easy to clean and don’t absorb flavors or odors, but the advantage of silicone is it’s resistance to melting. I normally don’t use my spatula when cooking on super high heat; I try to reserve it for lower heat tasks, like baking. But you can use silicone spatulas to stir hot items like sauces too!

My personal spatula faves

  1. You can purchase multiple sizes here; I am partial to the red ones! 
  2. I love the hefty wooden handles on these.
  3. This is the spatula we used for this post.

The start of fall is a great time to use a spatula because I don't know about y’all, but my schedule is crazy! It is becoming even more essential to create meals that are easy, warm, and inviting. 

And that’s where Chicken Divan comes in. This recipe actually comes from my fiancé's grandmother Deedeean absolutely wonderful Southern woman. In fact, October 12 will mark her spiritual anniversary and is becoming a special day for me as we all remember her. I like to think of this recipe as her gift of Southern cooking love to all of us!

Y’all, for the little amount of effort you put into making this in comparison to the results that come from baking itthere is no contest! It is so good and the ultimate comfort food. I also personally love it, because it brings back sweet memories for my fiancé, Jake, when he eats it because it was one of his favorite dishes growing up. (Side note to newly or longtime-wedsif you can find a recipe that your spouse loves that has been passed down through his family, score! It’s also a great way to connect with your in-laws. #mother-in-law-love!)

Not only is Chicken Divan delicious, but it is easy and will put your spatula to good use. From scraping mayonnaise from the jar, to smoothing out the top of the creamy casserole layer, it will make things easy, and give you more time to fabulously scatter cheese and cornflakes over the casserole top (see Mattye’s excellent hand form in the above photos).

Enjoying taste testing our culinary creation!

Enjoying taste testing our culinary creation!

Alright everybodyfall is in the air, so round up that spatula, get ready to assemble a casserole, and try out what we like to call “Chicken Divine.” (The Southern pronunciation, of course). It will not disappoint you or the ones you love!

Chicken Divan

Chicken Divan


Chicken Divan

What You Will Need

 

For shredded chicken

10 frozen chicken tenders (I bought one 32-ounce bag of chicken tenders and took 10 out)

1 tbl olive oil

1 tsp kosher sea salt

1/2 tsp curry powder 

 

For homemade cream of chicken soup

2 1/2 cups milk (I like unsweetend original almond milk)

7 tbl gluten free flour

2 chicken boullion cubes

2 tbl olive oil 

dash of curry powder

 

For casserole assembly

2 lbs fresh broccoli heads, lightly steamed in microwave*

1 cup mayonnaise (I prefer Duke’s)

1 tsp fresh lemon juice

1 tsp unsalted butter

1 cup grated cheddar cheese (I like Cabot Extra Sharp Cheddar)

1 cup cornflakes

 

What You Will Do

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease a 13X9X2 pan. 
  1. Place frozen chicken tenders in an oven-safe pan and coat in tablespoon olive oil. Stir together sea salt and curry powder, then sprinkle the spice mixture over the chicken tenders and lightly stir with spatula to evenly coat the chicken. 
  2. Once the oven is ready, bake chicken for 30 minutes. Let the chicken cool, then shred to equal two cups of chicken.**
  3. While the chicken is baking, make your cream of chicken soup: In a medium saucepan, whisk together milk and gluten free flour until combined. 
  4. Now turn heat to medium, then add bouillon cubes and 2 tablespoons olive oil, whisking constantly until bouillon dissolves and mixture thickens. Turn heat to low and whisk for a minute or two more, until no lumps remain. Take off heat and add a dash of curry powder (a shake or two).
  5. Once the cream of chicken soup has cooled a bit, add mayonnaise, lemon juice, and unsalted butter. Stir to combine with spatula.
  6. Line the bottom of your 13X9X2 pan with the lightly steamed broccoli, making an even layer of veggies. Top with shredded chicken. Using a spatula, gently pour the creamy mixture on top, making sure to scrape the sides of the bowl with your spatula to get all of that goodness on the chicken/broccoli layer.
  7. Smooth the creamy mixture with your spatula. Top with shredded cheese, then sprinkle on cornflakes.
  8. Bake in 350 degree oven for 25-30 minutes, until cheese is melted and cornflakes look golden brown and crispy. Enjoy!

*I like to put the broccoli in a glass pan, cover with saran wrap, and microwave for two to three minutes. 

**Shred chicken using two forks or fork and knife into bite size chunks. (I don’t like stringy, too thinly pulled chicken). It should be juicy and plump. You can also use pulled rotisserie chicken, but I prefer the flavor combo of the curried chicken. :) 

Photos by Jacob Blount Photography

a birthday celebration: aunt ruth's yummy cookies

Y'all know I love a good celebration, so as my birthday drew near this year, I wanted to find a special way to celebrate with you, dear friends of The LovingKind!

As I thought about how to celebrate with you in a meaningful way, I was drawn to this line from the heart of "We are The LovingKind:"


The LovingKind is about accepting, appreciating and celebrating who you are, who we are, and the life we have been given.


What a sweet thing to think about on a birthday! We have all been given precious life and with each year, it is something worth celebrating! So, for my birthday this year, the final of my 20's, I want to share with you a little piece of who I am through a cookie recipe.

I love to bake, and cookies are my favorite treat to create. What I'm sharing with you today is more than just a delicious cookie, but it carries with it a little piece of my history. I once was told that one of the best gifts to give someone you love is something that means a lot to you. In that spirit, I share with you my very favorite family cookie recipe, Aunt Ruth's Yummy Cookies!

Handwritten recipe from my mom. Photo by  Rachel Coffey Photography

Handwritten recipe from my mom. Photo by Rachel Coffey Photography

You may think I'm about to tell you about my dear, Aunt Ruth, but you see, I don't actually know Aunt Ruth at all! She was the aunt of one of my mom's good friends who shared this namesake cookie recipe with our family years ago. These cookies are special to me for another reason.


My mom has made these yummy cookies many times over the years, and she happened to whip up a batch August 20, 1985, the day before I was born. Later that day, after the cookies had safely made it out of the oven, she went into labor and brought me into the world just barely after midnight on August 21.

Hello, world!

Hello, world!

With their first baby having arrived, my parents were consumed with all the newborn activity, leaving everything else behind, cookies included. Until, my dad returned home to rest while my mom and I rested at the hospital. He saw the cookies, told himself he had just had a daughter and deserved to celebrate, and he began eating.

He ate so many cookies (my mom guesses probably three dozen!), he had to stopnot because his stomach was full, but because his jaw was actually fatigued! I've heard him tell this story many times and relate the feeling to lifting weights and reaching the point where your muscles simply cannot lift another pound. He said that is how his jaw muscles felt, and he physically could not take one more bite! It's fantastic and hilarious, and not at all surprising knowing my dad's sweet tooth!

mom and baby_The LovingKind
baby and daddy_The LovingKind

I love this story because it makes me laugh, it makes me think of my mom and dad as young parents, and it makes me grateful for family. These cookies have been a family favorite literally since the day I was born, and every time I bake them, I think about this funny moment from my beginning and smile. They will always be my birthday cookies.


I hope you will take this recipe into your own home, and that the yummy cookies will accompany your family for many great moments, big and small, along your journey.

Baby Homecoming_The LovingKind

Here's to you! Here's to birthdays! Here's to yummy, yummy, yummy cookies!

Aunt Ruth's Yummy Cookies

Ingredients

  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 cups plain flour
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 cups oatmeal (I use rolled oats)
  • 1 cup coconut
  • 12 oz. bag chocolate chips (optional- I started adding chocolate chips on occasion and it's become a favorite in the Woodcock household!)

 

Directions

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Combine eggs, butter, white sugar, brown sugar and vanilla and stir well.

In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda.

Stir everything together and add oats and coconut (and chocolate chips if you choose!).

Drop by spoonfuls onto a cookie sheet covered with foil or parchment paper and bake for 8 to 10 minutes.

Transfer the foil or parchment with cookies onto cooling rack.

Let the cookies cool and then share and enjoy!

recipe yields 6 dozen cookies

Love your knife, love your (kitchen) life

Since being married, I've been learning to cook out of necessity. Neither I nor Woody are naturally drawn to kitchen life, but we gotta eat, so we cook. I'm starting to enjoy it, but I still have a lot to learn.

I know I'm not the only gal who has done more cooking in her newlywed years than all the rest combined, so I asked my talented friend and food blogger, Callie of Luv Cooks, to be a guest on the tlk blog! She will be joining us for a series of four posts featuring great recipes for newlyweds (or longtime-weds!) and essential tools for every kitchen. In between posts make sure to check out all the other fabulous goodness on Callie's blog. Her recipes are sure to delight, and you'll be encouraged by her sincere heart for treating people with Southern hospitality and grace in and out of the kitchen!  I will also be guest blogging on Luv Cooks and you can read my opening post here!

Callie Aldridge of  Luv Cooks

Callie Aldridge of Luv Cooks

the lovingkind luv cooks tofu stir fry

First up, in the kitchen we have:

Cooking Tool: Chef's Knife

Recipe: Tofu Stir Fry

Without further ado, here's Callie!


I once read that every great chef needs a great knife. Outside of being a solid kitchen motto, a great chef's knife is a home cook’s best weapon, literally and figuratively*. It makes cooking easier, dicing safer, and generally qualifies you as all-around impressive to your husband, friends, and family. Or, as we say in the South, you will have earned official "cookin' braggin’ rites" in one fell swoop-or should I say slice?

I am honored to pair with Mattye and the lovingkind in these next few months to share what I believe are tools every great kitchen needs. Regardless of budget or space, you can build a solid cooking foundation that suits your style and taste. So, on request of the brilliant and always-forward thinking Mattye, I offer to you some basic chef's knife tips:

the lovingkind and luv cooks chef's knife
  1. A great chef's knife is not hard to find. I am not a knives expert, but with some research, I know that you can find your ideal match. This article from Serious Eats has great how-to’s on finding the best chef's knife for you. 
  2. A great knife is sharp. No matter what, sharpen your knife! A dull knife causes more injuries than a sharp one. I like these style sharpeners, but you can also use a steel.
  3. A great knife makes kitchen prep easy. To slice most efficiently, use a back and forth motion with your knife. With the knife point’s pressure on your cutting board, rock the knife back towards you and the item you are cutting. Use the same continuous motion to slice/chop/dice as needed.
  4. A great knife is safe. Going back to point number one, your ideal knife will feel comfortable and steady in your hand. Also, guard your fingers! Using a sharp knife is great, but you want to be careful you don’t slice those precious cooking fingers. As you slice, guard the fingers on your opposite hand by curling your upper fingers under your knuckles or by keeping them at a 90-degree angle.
Spicy Tofu Stirfry-246.jpg
the lovingkind luv cooks chef's knife
the lovingkind luv cooks chef's knife
Spicy Tofu Stirfry-307.jpg

This stir-fry tofu recipe is a great one to showcase a knife for many reasons. First- it’s simple and veggie-friendly. Tofu is easy to cook, full of protein and, let’s be honest, inexpensive. Red and yellow bell peppers add a floral, fruity sweetness to the green beans in this dish, and chopping up those suckers with a fabulous kitchen tool just makes the experience all the more fun. 

Second, you can now show off all of your knife prowess in one dish. “Who so elegantly diagonally cut these carrots?” your beloved may ask. “Why, that was me, my love!" "You use a knife with such skill and ease!” they reply. How romantic! Ok, maybe because I am a food blogger this appeals to me, but you get the picture! :) 

Spicy Tofu Stirfry-310.jpg
Spicy Tofu Stirfry-315.jpg
the lovingkind luv cooks tofu stir fry
Spicy Tofu Stirfry-330.jpg

Third, the sauce is delicious and I almost 100% promise that if you have tried tofu before and weren’t a fan, this will convert you. The way the tofu is prepped ensures it's crispy and chewy, giving it a meatier texture, and the results are spicy, sweet, and full of Asian flavors. 

Spicy Tofu Stirfry-358.jpg

A great chef's knife is a strong starting point for any kitchen. But honestly, the best thing you can ever have in your kitchen is love. Love for the people you are cooking for, love for the food you are making, and love for life. It makes everything more delicious. :)

Spicy Tofu Stirfry-367.jpg
*Also, it should be noted that chopping is an excellent way to relieve stress and aggression. Bad day? In a disagreement? Bust out your knife, a carrot, and a cutting board and get to choppin'. 

*Also, it should be noted that chopping is an excellent way to relieve stress and aggression. Bad day? In a disagreement? Bust out your knife, a carrot, and a cutting board and get to choppin'. 


Spicy Sweet Tofu Stir Fry 

Recipe adapted from The Minimalist Baker, a fantastic husband-and-wife food blog.

What You Will Need

For the Stir Fry

  • 1 14-ounce package firm or extra firm tofu
  • Cooking spray
  • 2 cups roughly chopped green beans
  • 1 cup diagonally sliced carrots 
  • 1 cup sliced red bell pepper
  • 1 cup sliced orange bell pepper
  • 2 Tbsp toasted sesame oil for sautéing (you can also use peanut or coconut)    

For the sauce

  • 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce (I like tamari because it's gluten-free)
  • 1/2 tsp dried ginger
  • 1/2 tsp Sriracha 
  • 2 Tbsp white sugar
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 1 Tbsp corn starch

Optional: white rice; chopped peanuts or additional Sriracha for topping

 

What You Will Do

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and begin drying your tofu. Remove it from the package, drain, and place it between two thick towels folded into the shape of the tofu. Then place it on a paper-towel lined plate or bowl and top it with something heavy like an iron skillet.
  2. Let it dry for about 15 minutes, changing your towels if they get too wet. Once dry, chop the tofu (with your awesome knife) into roughly 1-inch cubes or rectangles, whichever your heart desires.
  3. Spray a cookie sheet with cooking spray, and arrange chopped tofu on the pan. Bake for 15 minutes, flip over your tofu cubes to ensure even color, then bake for 15 more minutes. This will dry out the tofu and give it a more meat-like texture.
  4. Once the tofu is golden brown and a bit tough and firm, remove it from the oven and set it out to dry a bit more while you prep your vegetables. Ideally, it would set out another 45 minutes or maybe longer. I don't recommend refrigerating it overnight; I tried this with Mattye and let's just say it was cheeewwyyy.
  5. If serving over rice, start the rice at this point. I love Uncle Ben's instant rice
  6. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together all of the sauce ingredients, then set them aside.
  7. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat, add oil and swirl to coat the bottom of your pan. Then add (your beautifully chopped) veggies and toss to coat. Cook for 5-7 minutes, stirring often. When the vegetables have some color and have softened a bit (just feel them with your spoon or spatula; they should have some give to them), add the sauce, and stir. It should bubble and thicken. Then add the tofu and stir to coat.
  8. Cook the mixture for 3-5 minutes, stirring often. Try your best to not overcook this; taste it every minute or so to make sure your veggies stay on the crisp side. When veggies are cooked to your preferred doneness, remove from heat. 
  9. Serve your stir fry as is or over rice for a more filling meal. Enjoy and revel in your delicious, knife-wielding success. Bravo!