Meatless Monday – Eggplant, Kale & Tofu with Black Bean Sauce

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Are you a lover or a hater?  Tofu gets a bad rap and seems to trigger a love/hate reaction. I am totally a lover, I think it’s delicious and guilt free-just sayin’.  Let’s talk about what’s good about tofu besides the obvious – no animals were harmed in the making of my dinner!  Tofu is high in protein, low in fat, and naturally cholesterol-free. along with providing a whole slew of healthful nutrients. It is fairly bland in flavor and easily absorbs flavorful sauces and marinades so it’s easy to manipulate in cooking. So why does tofu get a bad rap?  Well some people just don’t like the taste and texture but there is controversy beyond the likability aspect. Tofu is a processed soy product, and the verdict is still out on it’s health benefits and risks.  For more info click HERE.  It’s quite a complicated topic and no one seems to agree.  So for now, I will keep making delicious (and guilt free) tofu dishes like this one with eggplant and a yummy black bean sauce.

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This dish was a bit hit in my house.  Tofu, cooked to crispy perfection, sauteed with eggplant and kale (still the darling of the day) and coated with a tasty spicy black bean sauce. Delicious and ready in less than 30 minutes!

TIPS:  Make sure you buy organic tofu.  Over 90% of tofu produced in the U.S.  is GMO and treated with ‘Roundup” which is a poison and shouldn’t be on your dinner plate.  The more liquid you can squeeze out of your tofu, the more flavor can be absorbed.

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EGGPLANT, KALE & TOFU WITH BLACK BEAN SAUCE

14 oz firm tofu
2 Tbsn vegetable oil (avocado, coconut or other high heat oil)
1 globe or 2 Japanese eggplants
1/2 bunch (6-7 kale leaves, 0r other bitter green like collards, mustard greens or broccoli rabe)

BLACK BEAN SAUCE
2 Tbsn black bean sauce
1 tsp chili sauce (or paste)
1 tsp honey
1 tsp corn starch
1/2 tsp white or apple cider vinegar
2-3 cloves garlic, finely minced (or 1 tsp garlic paste)
1/4 cup water
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)

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  • Slice tofu block into 1 inch slices and place on double paper towels.  Cover with double paper towels and place a heavy object on top (like a heavy pan or cutting board with canned goods) to press out the water.  Let sit at least 10 minutes.  Then cut into 1 inch dice. Set aside.

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  • Cut unpeeled eggplant into 1 inch dice. Set aside.

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  • Remove rib from kale (either tearing with your hands or using a sharp knife), then cut into 1-2 inch pieces. Set aside.

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  • In a small bowl whisk together the ingredients for the black bean sauce. Set aside.

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  • Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a well-seasoned cast iron pan or non-stick pan over medium high heat. Add the tofu and cook until light brown, turning each piece over to brown all four sides, about 8-10 minutes. If tofu is sticking add a bit more oil. Remove tofu from pan and set aside.

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  • Add another tablespoon of oil to the pan over medium high heat. Add the eggplant and cook, stirring frequently, until it is soft, about 8-10 minutes. If it sticks or seems to dry, add a few tablespoons of water instead of more oil.

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  • Stir in the kale and cook until it softens, 2-3 minutes.

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  • Pour in the sauce and stir to combine.  Fold in the crispy tofu  and cook until the sauce is thick and coats the vegetables, about a minute.

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  • Serve with brown rice or noodles.

 

Eggplant, Kale & Tofu with Black Bean Sauce

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

20150211_195133

14 oz firm tofu
2 Tbsn vegetable oil (avocado, coconut or other high heat oil)
1 globe or 2 Japanese eggplants
1/2 bunch (6-7 kale leaves, 0r other bitter green like collards, mustard greens or broccoli rabe)

BLACK BEAN SAUCE
2 Tbsn black bean sauce
1 tsp chili sauce (or paste)
1 tsp honey
1 tsp corn starch
1/2 tsp white or apple cider vinegar
2-3 cloves garlic, finely minced (or 1 tsp garlic paste)
1/4 cup water
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)

 

  • Slice tofu block into 1 inch slices and place on double paper towels.  Cover with double paper towels and place a heavy object on top (like a heavy pan or cutting board with canned goods) to press out the water.  Let sit at least 10 minutes.  Then cut into 1 inch dice. Set aside.
  • Cut unpeeled eggplant into 1 inch dice. Set aside.
  • Remove rib from kale (either tearing with your hands or using a sharp knife), then cut into 1-2 inch pieces. Set aside.
  • In a small bowl whisk together the ingredients for the black bean sauce. Set aside.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a well-seasoned cast iron pan or non-stick pan over medium high heat. Add the tofu and cook until light brown, turning each piece over to brown all four sides, about 8-10 minutes. If tofu is sticking add a bit more oil. Remove tofu from pan and set aside.
  • Add another tablespoon of oil to the pan over medium high heat. Add the eggplant and cook, stirring frequently, until it is soft, about 8-10 minutes. If it sticks or seems to dry, add a few tablespoons of water instead of more oil.
  • Stir in the kale and cook until it softens, 2-3 minutes.
  • Pour in the sauce and stir to combine.  Fold in the crispy tofu  and cook until the sauce is thick and coats the vegetables, about a minute.
  • Serve with brown rice or noodles.

One thought on “Meatless Monday – Eggplant, Kale & Tofu with Black Bean Sauce

  1. Reblogged this on goodmotherdiet and commented:

    We are just beginning week three of shelter in place. Who knew tofu would be almost as hard to find as toilet paper? Well if you are lucky enough to score some, here is a savory recipe that includes eggplant, greens and a delicious black bean sauce. You’ll forget you’re on lockdown. Be well.-Joyce

    Like

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