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“Leftover Veggie” Stir Fry

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I’m leaving for St. Louis tomorrow at the butt-crack of dawn for my five-year college reunion (insert 1000 exclamation points). I had a bunch of fresh vegetables leftover from cooking this week, and I didn’t want them to go to waste. I also had a twin pack of extra-firm tofu in the fridge, and all my usual stir-fry seasoning/sauce staples in the cabinet. I went back to my favorite tofu-kale stir fry recipe and changed it up a bit. I actually think this one turned out better than the original.

I followed the recipe of the original pretty closely, leaving out the ginger and Serrano pepper (I subbed red pepper flakes for spice). Since I didn’t have scallions and mushrooms I used Napa cabbage, Vidalia onion, red bell pepper, and asparagus (sliced into thin circles) as veggies. Otherwise I used the same sauce and general method, so you can refer to my original post for sauce and seasoning ingredients and measurements. To recap:

  1. Start by slicing and drying the tofu and boiling water to blanch the kale, as directed.
  2. Combine the sugar, salt and white pepper in a small dish.
  3. Slice the onion, asparagus, red pepper and napa cabbage thinly. Lay out in sections on your cutting board so it’s easy to add to the stir fry.
  4. Combine the soy sauce, dry sherry, vegetable broth and cornstarch in another small dish and whisk.
  5. Finely chop two cloves of garlic and combine with 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes.
  6. Once the water has boiled, add the kale (stems trimmed) for one minute, then use a slotted spoon to transfer to a bowl of cold water. Drain, squeeze out excess sauce and set on a paper towel to dry.
  7. Heat a non-stick skillet or wok over a medium-high flame. Add 1 tsp grape seed oil, wait a minute, then add tofu and stir fry for about 1-2 minutes until each side browns.
  8. Add the onion, garlic and red pepper flakes and stir fry for about 30 seconds to a minute.
  9. Add the asparagus, bell pepper and cabbage and sauté for another minute.
  10. Add the kale (chopped roughly), salt, sugar and white pepper and stir fry for another 30 seconds.
  11. Add the soy sauce mixture and a bit of sesame oil and stir fry for 1-2 minutes until the sauce thickens and starts to evaporate.

I didn’t even eat this with rice. It tasted so fresh and crunchy and healthy, that I didn’t want to spoil it with some heavy rice. While I do love the version with Serrano, mushrooms and scallions, I think this version is better. In fact, I think you can pretty much use any veggies you want as long as you stick to the rest of the recipe.

Naturally, I sipped on some secret stash 2009 JAQK Cellars “Charmed” Sauvignon Blanc (my favorite to pair with stir fry) while cooking and eating. Yum.

About Kelsey

Kelsey is a food and wine lover residing in Napa, California, where she does marketing for a boutique wine collective. She previously lived in San Francisco for over six years, where her blogging journey began. She loves to cook seasonal meals and experiment with new wine pairings. She has been drinking and learning about wine with her father since she was 14, and cooking in the kitchen with her mother since she was 6. Both of her parents taught her well about seasoning and flavors, and she continues to learn more with every meal that is made.

3 responses »

  1. How do you treat your tofu? I can never get the texture quite right…

    • It’s best to buy extra-firm tofu because it holds its shape and texture well. I slice the tofu into domino-size pieces and lay them out on two layers of paper towel, then put another layer of paper towel on top and let them drain/dry for about 10-15 minutes. If you do that first before doing any of the other prep, they should dry out long enough. When you’re ready to cook, start with the tofu and make sure you use a high-heat oil like grape seed or peanut. Do not use olive oil or spray, as it won’t cook the tofu to a crispness and you will be left with soggy, undercooked tofu (yuck).

      I hope this helps!


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