Veggin’ Cookbook Chronicles: Grilled Broccoli with Lemon-Soy Marinade

June 21, 2010 By: Megabeth Category: Side Dishes

“Veggies are a grill’s best friend,” so says the back of my next cookbook. Indeed. I’ve made many a recipe from The New Vegetarian Grill from Andrea Chesman and it still hasn’t steered me wrong. My edition is from 2008. This cookbook features 250 “flame-kissed recipes for fresh, inspired meals” according to its subtitle.

The beginning of the book features grilling tips and advice and the various methods for outdoor cooking and grilling indoors. The author intersperses more tips throughout the book. Some are relevant to the recipe on the same page while others sort of randomly appear. If you don’t read carefully you might miss some good tips.

There are no photos or illustrations in the book but the descriptions do well to describe the flavors of the dish. Also, read the recipe completely through, not all of them are suitable for making at a cookout. Some require some initial preparation on the grill and the rest of the dish has to be made back in the kitchen.

There are several veggie burger recipes but also unexpected items such as my next recipe – Soy-grilled Broccoli. When was the last time you saw someone grill broccoli? I’d say never. But, that will now change. This dish came out very well. The broccoli holds up well to the high heat, gets browned and crispy, and the marinade quite strong flavored.

Soy-Grilled Broccoli
3 stalks broccoli
1/2 cup Lemon-Soy marinade (recipe below)

Prepare a medium-hot fire in the grilled with a lightly oiled vegetable grill rack in place.

Trim the broccoli by stripping away the leaves and tough outter peel. (Note: I used my vegetable peeler to clean off the peel.) Cut the stems into thin strips or slice on the diagonal about 1/4 inch thick. Separate the florets into bite-size pieces. Pour the marinade over the broccoli

and toss to coat.

Lift the broccoli out of the marinade with a slotted spoon or tongs and grill, tossing frequently, until tender and grill-marked, about 5 minutes.

Serve hot. Pour any leftover marinade into a small pitcher and pass at the table with the broccoli.

Lemon-Soy Marinade
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup sesame oil
6 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
4 garlic cloves, minced

Combine the soy sauce, water, sesame oil, lemon juice, and garlic in an airtight jar and shake well. Alternatively, combine the ingredients in a blender and process until smooth. This dressing separates quickly, so be sure to shake it just before using.

Use immediately or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 months.

Makes about 1 3/4 cups

Asian Style Tofu Puffs with Green Beans and Snap Peas

July 01, 2009 By: Megabeth Category: Main Dishes

Tofu puffs! Where have you been all my life?

About a week ago, I stumbled upon a huge case of tofu products at my local international store. Nestled in with all the different kinds of tofu, I found an intriguing package labeled “soy puffs”.

soy puffs

I quickly snatched up a package but realized as soon as I got home I had no idea what to do with them.  Apparently they work well in stews and soups because the puffs tend to suck up the flavor of liquid. With that knowledge in hand,  I came up with the recipe for Asian Style Tofu Puffs with Green Beans and Snap Peas.  The crispy green beans, snap peas and green onions from our CSA delivery worked perfectly with the puffs.

The really great taste paired with the no-fuss preparation make tofu puffs something I could easily get addicted to. However, based on the nutritional value of these puffs, I’m going to have to classify them as a “sometimes food”. But, what a great discovery!

Asian Style Tofu Puffs with Green Beans and Snap Peas
by Megabeth

  • 1 5oz package refrigerated tofu/soy puffs
  • 1 pound green beans, trimmed
  • 2 cups sugar snap peas, trimmed
  • 2 green onions, white parts diced – slice some of the green for garnish
  • 2 cloves garlic, diced
  • 1 Tablespoon, sesame oil
  • 3 Tablespoons tamari or low sodium soy sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon rice wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable broth
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • toasted sesame seeds for garnish

Fill a pot with water and bring to a boil. Add soy puffs and blanch for 3-4 minutes. (Use a spoon to dunk the puffs as they have a tendency to float to the surface.) Once heated through, drain thoroughly and set aside.

Asian Style Tofu Puffs with Green Beans and Snap Peas

In a wok or a pan with high sides, add sesame oil and heat on medium high. Once oil is hot, add garlic and the chopped white parts of the green onion. Cook until they soften and begin to brown.

Asian Style Tofu Puffs with Green Beans and Snap Peas

In a small bowl, combine tamari and rice wine vinegar. Add green beans and snap peas to the wok then add the tamari mixture. Stir fry until the vegetables are mostly cooked through – about 4 – 5 minutes. Add the tofu to the pan, then add the vegetable broth. Stir to coat everything with the sauce in the pan. Reduce heat to low and allow to cook until tofu puffs soften.

Asian Style Tofu Puffs with Green Beans and Snap Peas

In a small bowl, add the corn starch plus one tablespoon water. Stir to make a thick paste. Push the vegetables to the side and add cornstarch to the vegetable broth at the bottom of the pan to thicken the sauce. Mix to coat the vegetables and tofu. Let cook another 1 or 2 minutes.

img_Asian Style Tofu Puffs with Green Beans and Snap Peas

Once plated, drizzle with some of the sauce and sprinkle with green onions and toasted sesame seeds.

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