maandag 25 november 2013

Vegan Tofu Tikka Masala (Kopie)

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Tikka is the unofficial National dish of Britain, is the most popular form of curry. Tikkas are eaten traditionally with chicken as the principal ingredient in a rich and tangy sauce. The other form of Chicken tikka chicken morsels marinated in yogurt spice mix and cooked in a clay oven. These chicken tikkas form excellent fillers for wraps, subs and pizzas. Yep subway and pizza hut in India sell, Chicken tikka sub and pizza. Crazy how popular this dish is. Of course, the meat eaters cannot have all the fun and since a major population in India is vegetarian, paneer is substituted in place of chicken. Some other popular tikka ingredients in India include baby corn and mushrooms.

In my kitchen today, I decided to make a relatively low fat, vegan to boot tofu tikka masala. I said relatively because I am adding almond butter for the creaminess but other then that no heavy cream in this recipe.

Now if you are a vegetarian not vegan, i would urge you to give this recipe a try with paneer. Tofu can be a great alternative but paneer tastes amazing. Paneer can be found in the cheese section of speciality stores like Earthfare. And if Earthfare has it I am sure TJs and WFs must be carrying it too. However if you want to get it at a fraction of a price, hit the Indian grocery store. You will really be alarmed at the difference in the price. If finding paneer is a problem or if you are dairy free/ vegan this recipe is for you.

Marinade:

Traditionally the tikka is marinated in yogurt and spices. But my mission is to make this recipe vegan hence I am going to forgo the yogurt.

1 block of tofu
Juice of ½ lemon
½ tsp cayenne pepper
½ tsp turmeric powder
½ tsp garam masala
1 clove of garlic crushed
½” piece of ginger crushed
Salt and pepper to season
½ tbsp olive oil.
After marination:
Marinate and keep aside for 15 minutes. I am not the kind who keeps in overnight but if you decide to do it, you bet it would add tons of flavor.
Next bake it in a 350F oven for about 30 minutes till they are golden and firm on the outside.

For the gravy:
1 medium onion preferably red, chopped
½ a can of crushed tomatoes
2 cloves of garlic minced
1 inch piece of ginger minced
1 small stick cinnamon
1 bay leaf
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp garam masala
½ cup almond mik
2 tbsp almond butter
Lemon juice to make the gravy tart (In traditional recipes, yogurt and heavy cream is used to make it creamy and tart)
Salt and pepper
1.5 T EVOO

Directions: (Picture tutorial follows after the recipe)

In a skillet, heat the oil. Next add the whole spices i.e. bay leaf and cinnamon. Let is aromatize (I know not a word) for 15 seconds.
Add the onions, garlic and ginger and cook till the onions are translucent and everything smells amazing.
Next, add the crushed tomatoes. Cooking the tomatoes is the KEY step in this gravy. If the tomatoes stay undercooked,the taste of the final product will suffer. So how do you know, well add the tomatoes and the spices and cook till you see the edges of the tomatoes separating from the pan.
Next add the almond butter, ½ cup of water and almond milk. Mix and let it come to a boil.
Once it comes to a boil, add lemon juice and season to taste. Finally add the tofu and let it go for another 5 minutes, so that the tofu can soak the liquid and spices.
Garnish with cilanto or not, if you are a hater

I served mine with brown rice and an arugula salad.
Workout: 1.5 mile “easy” (yeah, I know how easy it was) run at a conversational pace which for me is 4.2 mph. I know I have a poor CV capacity and stamina.

This post has taken fo-eva to load! I am beat, see ya tomorrow!

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