Summer Solstice + Roasted Tofu and Peanut Noodle Salad

Oh yum oh yum.  This easy and cheap meal comes from one of my favorite magazines out there – Eating Well.  My mom requested that I make it for our summer solstice friend and family gathering on the 21st of June this year.  I served it cold, which was nice, since I made it ahead of time I had time to do other things in the few hours leading up to the informal gathering.

Extra-firm, cubed, roasted tofu is the only way to go, if you ask me.  I keep returning to this tried and true method.

I always line with aluminum foil – this makes transferring the cooked tofu that much easier.  Simply pinch the open ends together and pick up the entire packet and dump into recipe.

Prep on this recipe is minimal.  Cook your pasta and drain.  Chop veggies and toss in marinade.  Combine together, mix well, and top with tofu and optional chopped peanuts.  Refrigerate until chilled. Serve cold. 
The bowl of noodles is still half full due to the copious amounts of watermelon, chips, salsa, nacho layered chips, and garlic green beans.  We were so full we forgot the deviled eggs and cooked shrimp that were still in the fridge.  

After large amounts of food and drink, we all headed outside to admire my mom’s raised beds and fenced in gardens.  So far, so good in terms of avoiding pests this year.  However, now I feel the need to knock on wood for her sake.  Her lettuce is gorgeous and even spells Greta!

Roasted Tofu & Peanut Noodle SaladEating Well, August 2013
Serves 5, 2 cups each.
Total time: 40 minutes.

1. Position oven rack on lower third of oven; preheat to 450 degrees.  Line rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil.  Put large pot of water on stove to boil for spaghetti.

2. Combine ¼ cup lime juice, ¼ cup low-sodium soy sauce, and 1 tablespoon canola oil in a large bowl.  Stir in 1 16-oz package of extra-firm tofu cut into ½-¾ inch chunks.  Allow to marinate at least 10 minutes, stirring frequently.

3. Transfer tofu to foil-lined pan using a slotted spoon.  Reserve the marinade.  Roast the tofu, stirring once halfway through, until golden brown, 16 to 18 minutes.

4. Meanwhile, cook 1 box of whole wheat spaghetti according to package.  Drain and set aside.  Stir in 1 tablespoon of oil to prevent sticking.

5.  Thinly slice 2 medium orange bell peppers.  Thinly slice 6 cups of napa cabbage.  Thinly slice 1 cup trimmed snow peas, or chop 1 cup peas in pod.

6. Whisk ½ cup creamy all-natural peanut butter, 3 tablespoons water, 3 cloves of minced garlic1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger, and reserved marinade in a very large bowl.  Add the drained spaghetti.  Add cabbage, bell peppers, and snow peas.  Toss to coat.  Top with roasted tofu and optional chopped peanuts.  Refrigerate until chilled and serve cold.

Per serving:
423 calories; 21 g fat (2 g saturated, 5 g mono); 0 g cholesterol; 42 g carbohydrate; 0 g added sugars; 21 g protein; 8 g fiber; 546 g sodium; 321 mg potassium.  Nutrition bonus: Vitamin C (133% daily value), Vitamin A (46% daily value), Calcium & Magnesium (26% daily value), Iron (21% daily value).

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