Hey ninjas - let's all cook with tequila!
I made this recipe because I recently bought myself a grill pan and wanted to try it out. It's actually a double-sided thing with the grill ridges on one side and a flat griddle on the other and it fits over two stove burners. I LOVE this thing. I encourage everyone to get a grill pan, especially if you're like me and live in the city where there's no yard or patio to speak of where you could put a grill. If you don't have/don't want a grill pan, you could also make this recipe on an outdoor grill, a George-Foreman-esque countertop grill contraption, or bake it in the oven. Baking instructions follow the recipe.
Now let it be said that I'm not one that's big on eating slabs of tofu, no matter how they are prepared. I tend to prefer my tofu as part of a greater whole, but the combination of the delicious, tequila-spiked marinde and the "yum" and firm texture imparted by grilling made this stuff downright amazing if I do say so myself. Marinated grilled tofu is endlessly versatile - eat it on it's own, on top of a salad, layered in a sandwich, tucked into a pita/wrap with veggies and dressing, eat atop rice cooked in vegetable broth or pasta with olive oil....just remember that whatever you eat it with should be lightly flavored so you don't overpower the flavor of the marinade. I ate mine rolled into a whole-wheat wrap with spinach, strawberries, avocado, cilantro, and topped with a margarita vinaigrette dressing, the recipe for which I have also included in this post since that's just how much I love my ninja readers. Onto the recipe!
Tequila Marinated Grilled Tofu
1/4 cup lime juice
1/4 cup tequila
3 Tablespoons olive oil
zest of 1 lime
1/2 teaspoon salt
several grinds black pepper
1 lb extra firm tofu, drained
*Note: you may want to freeze and thaw your tofu before using it in this recipe. Freezing tofu before cooking gives it a firmer, chewier, and more meat-like texture. Just throw the whole package in the freezer, freeze until solid, and then thaw completely in the refrigerator. Proceed normally with the recipe. If you don't want to freeze your tofu or don't have time, it will still be delicious, but the texture will be slightly softer.
First press your tofu. Wrap it in a clean dish towel and place it on a cutting board or flat plate. Put another cutting board/plate on top of it and weight it down with something - I use a can or two of tomatoes or a large container of oatmeal. You're not trying to flatten/smush it; just weight it with something heavy enough to press it down slightly - you're just trying to squeeze out some of the excess water so it absorbs the marinade better. Make sure the weight is evenly distributed so your tofu doesn't press unevenly or tilt the top plate and topple off your weight. Leave the tofu for 30-60 minutes. Slice width-wise into eighths, which will give you about 1/2" slices. Set aside.
In a wide, shallow dish, whisk all remaining ingredients together. Place the tofu in the dish and spoon some of the marinade on top. Marinate for at least one hour, but up to overnight; turning at least once.
To grill: make sure your grill or grill pan is well-oiled with olive oil or cooking spray and pre-heat on medium-high. Place tofu slices on grill pan and grill each side for 7-10 minutes until browned and char-marks appear, spooning additional marinade over tofu as it cooks.
To bake in the oven: pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F. Place marinated tofu onto well-oiled baking sheet. Bake 15 minutes. Flip tofu and spoon some more of the marinade over it and return to the oven for another 15 minutes.
2 Tablespoons lime juice
1.5 teaspoons orange juice
1.5 teaspoons tequila
1 shallot, minced finely
1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
1/4 teaspoon salt
several grinds black pepper
1/4 cup olive oil
Whisk all ingredients until well combined. Chill at least 15 minutes to allow flavors to meld.
I ate my tofu in whole wheat wraps with baby spinach, fresh sliced strawberries, avocado, cilantro, and all of it doused in the margarita vinaigrette. Yum!
I suggest making yourself a refreshing margarita with the leftover tequila to accompany your tasty tofu, but hey, that's just me.
And now I leave you with this, because I haven't been able to get the song out of my head since starting this post, and I think you should all have to suffer with me:
Oh, childhood memories :)
As always, comments welcome and thanks to all my faithful ninja readers!
<3 The Fur Ninja