I found this recipe in Cooking Light Magazine, and it’s one of Matt’s favorites. Mine too. It’s what I make when I don’t know what to make for dinner. The Cooking Light version uses chicken broth, so I substitute vegetable broth to make it vegan.  The sambal oelek and black bean garlic sauce are found in the Asian food section of the grocery store.  It took me a few tries to cook the tofu to the right consistency-  if you cook it too long it gets rubbery, and if you don’t cook it enough (on all sides) it’s too soft.  The recipe is supposed to serve four, but if Matt has two helpings and I have one, it’s gone.

Spicy Tofu with Peanuts

  • 1 14-oz package extra firm tofu, drained and pressed dry
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • ¾ cup vegetable broth
  • 1 tbsp sambal oelek (ground fresh chili paste)
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp cornstarch or potato starch
  • 2 tsp black bean garlic sauce
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 8-oz package presliced mushrooms
  • ½ cup matchstick-cut carrots (I buy already shredded)
  • 1 tbsp bottled ground fresh ginger or minced ginger root
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • ½ cup chopped green onions
  • ¼ cup peanuts, chopped
  • cooked rice (or bulgar)

  1. About an hour before making the recipe, drain tofu, slice in half horizontally and then vertically into 1-inch pieces. Place on multiple paper towels, then put paper towels on top of tofu and press dry. (I put my cutting board on top and leave it for an hour.)
  2. Preheat broiler on high. Arrange tofu in a single layer on a foil-lined pan coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with 2 tbsp soy sauce. Broil for 5 minutes, turn tofu pieces over and broil for another 5 minutes. Turn oven off and leave tofu in hot oven for 10 more minutes.
  3. While tofu cooks, combine vegetable broth and next 4 ingredients (through black bean sauce) stirring with a whisk. Set aside.
  4. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add salt and mushrooms; sauté 4 minutes or until mushrooms begin to release their liquid. Stir in carrots, ginger and garlic, cook 2 minutes. Add broth mixture, cook 1 minute or until sauce begins to thicken. Remove from heat, stir in tofu and green onions. Serve over rice or bulgar, sprinkle with peanuts.