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Homegrown.org Cook-Off 2011: BBQ Tofu and Rice Bowl

I needed to use up a package of tofu, half a jar of homemade swapped BBQ sauce and leftover whey. The result was much better than I anticipated, and I credit the rice-cooked-in-whey and the BBQ sauce with that. I'd never cooked rice in whey before and to tell you the truth, was a little skeptical because boiling leftover milk remnants sounds a little strange. The resulting rice was so smooth and flavorful, though, that I was completely won over. Of course, you could follow this recipe and just cook the rice in water or vegetable broth without a problem. And the BBQ sauce! At a local food swap hosted by FSC Swappers, I came home with a jar of strawberry-rhubarb BBQ sauce.  Even if you don't have strawberry-rhubarb on hand, you can still make this recipe using whatever sauce you do have..

BBQ Tofu Bowl with Peppers & Onions
  • 1 cup uncooked brown rice
  • 2 1/2 cups whey (local from Meadowbrook Farms, Clarksville NY)
  • one package extra firm tofu, sliced into one-inch chunks
  • olive oil for sauteing 
  • 1/2 onion, sliced into thin strips (Kilpatrick Family Garms, Granville NY)
  • 1/2 green bell pepper, sliced into thin strips (Kilpatrick Family Garms, Granville NY)
  • 1 cup strawberry-rhubarb bbq sauce  (made with local strawberries and rhubarb)

  1. Start your rice! In a medium saucepan, bring 2 1/2 cups whey to a boil. Add in the uncooked brown rice, return to a boil and then simmer, covered, for about 40 minutes or until water is completely absorbed. As always, watch it carefully in the last few minutes and stir to avoid scorching.
  2. Dry-fry tofu in a skillet (see step 2 in this post). Once much of the liquid has been pressed out, set aside the tofu on a plate.
  3. Using the same skillet, cook the onion in a bit of olive oil over medium heat for about ten minutes. Add in the green pepper with salt and pepper. Cook for another 7-8 minutes until the pepper is softened. Next, add in the cooked tofu along with the BBQ sauce. Reduce heat to low, stir and simmer for about five minutes so the flavors can absorb.
  4. Serve tofu and veggies over rice. Yields about four servings.

The local ingredients are almost unexpected in this recipe, because it is such a simple dish. I wish I had gotten the tofu from Vermont Soy, since that would at least be a bit closer, if not exactly "local" to where we live. This tofu bowl makes for a great lunch too because I have no problem eating the leftovers up cold. If you wanted to kick up the tofu, you could dredge it according to these directions from my sesame tofu recipe. It takes an extra step, but the result is a crispy, crunchy tofu that tastes like it's been decadently deep-fried, but isn't actually all that bad for you.


Full post published at http://unspeakablevisions.blogspot.com/2011/07/bbq-tofu-rice-bowl.html.

Views: 209

Comment by Cornelia on August 1, 2011 at 5:23pm
Winner! It came down to the fact that you used a by-product of cheesemaking - whey - and the strawberry-rhubarb BBQ sauce - yowza, that sounds good! Congratulations Christine! You're this week's HOMEGROWN Chef-herdess!
Comment by Christine on August 1, 2011 at 6:33pm
I have to write about the cheesemaking party! It was so awesome, but I ended up with an awful lot of whey that needed to be used up and I had no idea what to do. Someone suggested that you could make rice with it, so I gave it a shot!


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