Unexpected flavours collide to send you into umami heaven. These are my Saturday afternoon post-training lunch habit. Makes four.
- 450 grams tofu
- 1 tblsp safflower or sunflower oil
- 1½ tblsp tamari
- 1 tblsp sweet paprika
- 1 stalk of lemongrass, finely chopped (discard the top third of the stalk - too tough)
- 1 cm of galangal root, finely chopped
- 1 red chili, deseeded and finely chopped
- ½ clove of garlic, finely chopped
- 5 tblsp of olive oil
- 6 soft corn tortillas
- 1 carrot, sliced lengthwise
- 1 handful of watercress (or any light, leafy green)
- 1 handful of coriander leaves
- 1 lime
- Sauce of your choice - the dipping sauce from the Vietnamese crispy pancake recipe is highly recommended (http://thesmugvegan.com/?p=110), or vegan mayonnaise (optional, but the tacos might be a bit dry without it)
- Roughly crumble the tofu into a bowl, using your hands. You're aiming for most pieces to be ovals around 2 cms long, with lots of little pieces. Set aside.
- Heat the safflower oil in a non-stick pan, and slide the tofu in (the water from the tofu might make the oil spit, so stand back). Stir-fry at a medium-high heat, until the tofu pieces are golden and crispy on at least two sides.
- Turn the heat off and quickly stir in the tamari, coating all the tofu pieces (the heat is off so the tofu can absorb the tamari before it evaporates). Enjoy the sizzling sound, then put the heat back on - and immediately stir in the sweet paprika, sticking the paprika to all sides of the 'wet' tofu, cook for 1 minute.
- Add the lemongrass, galangal, chili and garlic to the tofu mixture and cook 5 minutes or until the herbs are fragrant. Take off the heat and set aside.
- Heat a small non-stick pan with around 1 tblsp of the olive oil, and add your first tortilla. The sides of tortillas tend to curl as they warm, so keep your spatula lightly over top to weight the sides down. Flip after a few minutes and cook until the other side is just starting to get golden spots.
- While the tortilla is hot, turn it out on a plate and put a heaped tablespoon of tofu in a line down the centre. Pile strands of carrot, watercress and coriander on top, and squeeze the lime on top, adding your sauce.
- Put the small pan back on the heat, adding more olive oil to keep the pan coated, and heat up your next tortilla - and repeat until you have 6 tacos. (I tend to serve my first four while they're hot, and make the last two as seconds).