At the nearby sushi restaurant, I often order tofu teriyaki, which they will make spicy upon request. I love spicy. Although we go to this restaurant many Fridays, I had tofu I needed to use up this week and decided I’d try to make something similar myself. My attempt turned out similar to the restaurant’s, although my tofu, which I baked instead of frying, was much crispier than theirs.
First you need to make the spicy teriyaki sauce, which you can use on many things other than this dish. Here is how you do it:
Spicy Teriyaki Sauce
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup mirin
2 Tbsp agave nectar
3 cloves garlic, pressed
1 thumb-sized piece of ginger, grated
sriracha sauce to taste
Mix all ingredients together.
You would eliminate the sriracha if you wanted regular, non-spicy teriyaki. But what’s the fun in that?
I also wanted you to see how nicely my Pyrex bowl (which used to be my mother’s) goes with the sriracha bottle.
Spicy Teriyaki Tofu with Vegetables
1 pound tofu, sliced into triangles
1 cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
1/2 cup soy milk or water
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 crown of broccoli, cut into florets
1 carrot, julienned
1 green pepper, julienned
1/2 white onion, sliced
3 scallions, chopped
1 Tbsp sesame seeds
1 cup spicy teriyaki sauce
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
Slice the tofu into triangles. I cut mine in half lengthwise, but I make a very firm and therefore very flat tofu. You may be able to slice yours in thirds or quarters lengthwise.
Create an “assembly” line for the breading of the tofu. In a small bowl, place the cornstarch, and in another the soymilk or water. I went all wacky and used a mix of water and sake, myself. It looks like soymilk here because the cornstarch got into it. I also used whole wheat panko, which I have only just begun seeing. Panko is usually white. The white stuff in this panko is cornstarch again. I got cornstarch all over the place last night.
Dip each tofu triangle into the cornstarch, shake off the excess, then dip into the soymilk or water. Finally roll it around in the panko. It helps to use one hand for dry ingredients and the other for wet. As you finish each triangle, place on a baking sheet. They don’t have to look pretty; you’re just going to be pouring sauce over them later. (Whole wheat panko seems to be a little harder to work with than regular panko, or maybe it’s just more obvious because it’s not the same color of the tofu you’re breading.)
Spray lightly with oil (optionally) and place in the oven and bake until crispy, about 30 minutes, flipping halfway through.
Meanwhile, steam the broccoli. You can just stir-fry the broccoli with the other ingredients, but I prefer to steam it lightly first and just fry for a minute or so. I think it has a better texture that way.
Prepare all other veggies.
In a large saute pan or a wok, heat a small amount of oil (I used peanut with a splash of sesame oil), then add the onions. Fry for 2 minutes, then add peppers. Fry for 1 minute and add carrots. Fry for 1 minute, then add scallions.
Add the steamed broccoli and fry for another minute.
Add the sesame seeds about about a third of the sauce. You don’t want to drown the veggies in the sauce, you want them sort of delicately flavored with the sauce. Stir for a minute or two until the sauce cooks down.
Remove the veggies from the pan or wok and set aside. Add the baked tofu to pan or wok.
Pour about half of the remaining sauce over the tofu and stir to cover. You don’t need to coat the tofu completely with the sauce, you just want to soften the breading a little bit.
Serve with sushi rice. Spoon the remaining teriyaki sauce over the tofu on individual plates.
By the way, I owe you a sourdough bread tutorial and I’ve been very bad about getting it up. However, I’m about to hit the pool, so I’m going to continue to be bad. I’m off all this week, though, in order to entertain my dear friend from Australia, who is arriving on Monday, so I should have plenty of time for posting!