.Mexican Buddha Bowl with Tofu Sofritos.
Bring color to your day... Even when the world feels dark.
I won’t spend a lot of time talking about COVID-19 because, well... We’re all so saturated in our fears and worries for ourselves and others that one more post might just do us in! Instead I’ll just take this time to say, fill your belly, your mind, and your heart with as much good as you can.
If you can’t find it... Ask for it.
Let’s continue to be here for each other.
Above are two Mexican Style Buddha Bowls filled with: Black Beans, Cumin and Turmeric Rice, Tofu Sofrito, Cabbage, Tomato, Kale, Cilantro and Serrano Pepper Hot Sauce.
The main ingredients of this bowl can change depending upon what you currently have in your fridge, the spices you have in your pantry, and how many people you might be cooking for. Please don't run out to the store and buy these exact ingredients if you have something similar already at home. That is the beauty of buddha bowls... Fill it with what you have and what you love!
The beautiful yellow color of the rice comes from half a teaspoon of turmeric that goes into the water in the beginning stages of cooking. I also added salt and cumin to add to the delicious flavor found in Latin cuisine.
I used kale as my hearty green and dressed it lightly with white wine vinegar to help break down the roughness often found when eating kale. If you have romaine, arugula, or even spinach... These will all hold up against the flavors of the rest of the dish and add a nice crunch.
In this recipe, I will only focus on the Tofu Sofritos, as that is the most unique ingredient for most people.
Sofritos, for those unfamiliar with the cooking method, may find this Wikipedia explanation helpful: "aromatic ingredients cut into small pieces and sautéed or braised in cooking oil."
Most sofritos consist of meat, typically pork and chicken... But, with the rise of Veganism and Plant-Based diets, popular chain restaurants like Chipotle put a tofu option on their menu. Now many people are familiar with the tofu option, but not so confident with how to make it themselves.
Pressing the tofu (either in a tofu press, or under a heavy plate or skillet), and good quality spices will definitely take this dish the extra mile in texture and in flavor. Many plant-based chefs and bloggers have shared their wonderful Tofu Sofrito recipes... So, here is mine!
If you enjoy this recipe please remember to subscribe to this blog, feel free to share it on Facebook and Instagram and leave me a message below!
3 green onions also called scallions- white and green sections (rough chop)
Quarter of a yellow onion (finely diced)
Baking and Spices:
1 tablespoon of cumin
1 tablespoon of Chili-lime salt (optional)
1-2 tablespoons garlic powder (I use roasted garlic powder)
1/4 cup of smoked paprika
1-2 tablespoons of salt
To begin place the tofu in a tofu press and press for 30-40 minutes. If you do not have a tofu press wrap the tofu in 2-3 paper towels, place on a large plate, and lay a heavy pan or pot on top of the tofu. Every 15 minutes flip the tofu over to get the most moisture out as you can.
When the tofu has finished pressing (around 40 minutes), place it in a large bowl and either using your hands or a fork, crumble the block of tofu into very small pieces. If there is a lot of moisture left in the bowl strain the tofu into a colander before cooking it. The less moisture the better.
In a large skillet heat 1/4 a cup of oil on medium to high heat. Add the chopped green onions and the diced yellow onions to the pan and season generously with salt. When the onions begin to turn translucent add the crumbled tofu to the pan.
Keeping the heat high, use a large spoon to continue to break the tofu a part. Season generously with cumin, chili-lime salt, garlic powder, and paprika. The tofu should be sizzling in the pan as the moisture continues to cook out.
*Don't be surprised if at first the tofu crumbles look like scrambled eggs. As the moisture cooks out the tofu will hold its shape and just slightly "crisp".
When the tofu has shrunken, the moisture has mostly if not entirely evaporated, and the salt and spice level are to your liking, remove the tofu from the heat.
I assembled the Buddha bowl shown above in this order:
Tofu Sofritos can be used in so many versatile ways... Put it is your burritos, tacos, and salads! You'll love it.
I hope you enjoy this recipe and please remember to take care of yourself during these uncertain times! Wash your hands, feed yourself whole foods, and reach out to those you love...