Monday, September 20, 2010

Asparagus with Peanut-flavoured Tofu Dressing

Japan has been on my mind lately and I was determined to cook something from a library book I have home called The Enlightened Kitchen: Fresh Vegetable Dishes from the Temples of Japan.    I woke up early this morning to prepare a simple and intriguing dish called Asparagus and Hijiki with White Vinegar Dressing.  I was SURE I had two packages of dried hijiki in my pantry but when I went to look for them all I could find was wakame seaweed.   Arrgh!   So I frantically pawed through the book for some other way to use the lovely and slender asparagus all steamed and ready to go.  I hit upon a salad recipe with a Peanut-flavoured Tofu Dressing and thought that might do.  And then my next challenge presented itself.  I had no silken tofu for the dressing because the package in my fridge had expired.  Darn, darn and triple darn.  The recipe said that silken tofu was "preferred" but not required so I cut up some regular firm tofu and attempted to blend it together with the remaining ingredients.   I'm telling you this story so if you ever try to make salad dressing with regular tofu you don't, unless there is quite a bit of liquid involved.  Out the window went the specified amounts of lemon juice, vinegar and maple syrup.  It was necessary to splash in at least a few extra tablespoons of various liquids along with uncalled for ingredients before the blender would even function!  

So here is my final product.  Some simple steamed asparagus with a peanut-flavoured tofu dressing.  The dressing was still a little goopy and I'm still on the fence about this particular flavour combination but since I love asparagus it wasn't a bad breakfast.  Better luck next week Lee.  I'm not going to write out the ingredients to this mess unless someone begs me.

My friend Kathryn in California seems to have had more success this week with her offering of sauteed kale.  Go and check it out!    I love, love, love kale so am always happy to find new ways to cook and serve it.  Thanks Kathryn!


  1. I LOVEloveLOVE asparagus! This looks good!

  2. I love asparagus but I'm not sure about with peanut butter and I'd think either peanut butter OR tofu sauce/dressing. I'm one of those strange people who likes asparagus best when it's plain. Thanks, Lee, for posting all these recipes though. And, it's a very healthy breakfast!!!

  3. Lee--Kudos for keeping up with this when you have so many other things going on. And, gosh, I admire your ingenuity in coming up with a recipe when you found you were missing an ingredient for your original plan (missing an ingredient has happened to me, too, and darn, it's so annoying, haha!) This looks yummy despite all your toils in getting to the finished product :-)

  4. Thanks for the comments ladies!

    I was seriously pissed about having the wrong seaweed. I think I must be losing it!
    I almost didn't post but thought what the heck, not every kitchen experiment is going to go well and now I can have a bit of a laugh at myself.

  5. Oh, I am SO glad you posted!!! To tell you the truth, I have been SO impressed and amazed by the things you've been making. You are tackling such amazing recipes and your photos always look so professional. I am inspired and intimidated at the same time! ;-> Your post made me feel better about my own, often imperfect, cooking escapades! For someone like me, new to the vegan kitchen, it is good to know that sometimes even experienced cooks have unexpected "adventures" in the kitchen, haha! Thank you!

  6. Thanks for saying that Kathryn. I don't even think of myself as an experienced cook. I think of myself as a novice who is learning every day. I just push myself to try new things even if the recipes are outside my comfort zone. I have disasters happen all the time, in fact I'm terrible when I try and entertain. I do the best when I'm on my own and just cooking for my own pleasure and the family of course!