Thursday, January 1, 2009

Tofu "Chicken" Salad Sandwiches

This is the time of year we all "start over." Eating right, exercising and all that good stuff. I've jumped aboard the Lose 20 Pound Train too, so I'll try to keep recipes on the lighter side for the time being.

One sure fire way to lessen your fat and cholesterol INTAKE is to limit or omit the amount of meat you are eating. And to that end, meet my latest take on an "un-chicken" salad. Not that chicken was ever a "bad" protein in the first place. This is more to show you the flexibility of tofu -- an ingredient that I just love and I think more people would love if they just knew what on earth to do with it.

This is a simple, no-cook recipe, except for toasting the bread, so it's something the kids can do for an after school snack. Feel free to mix and match ingredients to fit your tastes. Tofu is a blank slate, it has a very mild flavor, so you can go as tame or wild as you desire. Have fun playing with your food!

Tofu "Chicken" Salad Sandwiches
1/2 lb firm tofu (half of one block)
2-3 leaves of red or green kale, chiffonade (which means thinly sliced)
1 tsp spicy brown mustard
1 Tbsp flax seed oil
1-2 Tbsp mayonnaise (depending on how creamy you want it)
1 tsp toasted pecan pieces
3 Tbsp cooked brown rice (great use for leftover rice)
1 tsp ground turmeric
1 tsp paprika
salt and pepper to taste

2 ciabatta bread rolls, split and lightly toasted
lettuce leaves, for garnish
sliced tomato, for garnish

Place firm tofu in a mixing bowl and break up with a fork until it's in chunks reminiscent of chicken salad texture. Add remaining ingredients, except bread, lettuce and tomato, and mix gently so as not to turn the tofu to mush. Place mixture onto bottom half of the ciabatta rolls, top with lettuce and tomato and remaining half of the roll. Serve with a nice citrus salad on the side.