Friday, October 19, 2012

VeganMoFo Day 15: Tofu and Green Beans in Black Bean Garlic Sauce

Whenever I'm at a restaurant and see tofu and green beans on the menu, I immediately know that’s what I’ll order. Oddly enough, it’s something that I never cook at home. Weird! So, this week I decided to go for it. This is a combination of a bunch of different tofu and green bean recipes that I saw online. It’s such a simple dish that you probably don’t even need a recipe to follow.

 The one ingredient worth trying is the pre-made black bean garlic sauce. You can find it in Asian supermarkets or in the Asian section of most grocery stores.  It can be used in any stir-fry, so a small jar of it will go quickly (depending on how often you stir-fry, natch).  I think it's pretty salty on its own, so I didn’t include any additional salt or soy sauce in this recipe.  Also, if you can't find Chinese cooking wine, you can use dry sherry or any of the substitutes listed here.  You could also probably leave it out completely and just use water instead. 

Makes 2-3 servings
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 inch of fresh ginger, minced
1 package of firm tofu, cubed
½ pound of green beans, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
2 tablespoons black bean garlic sauce
1 tablespoon Chinese cooking wine (or dry sherry)
1 teaspoon red hot chili flakes
  1. In a wok or large skillet, fry the garlic and ginger in oil over high heat until fragrant.
  2. Add the tofu and stir fry until golden brown on all sides.
  3. Add the green beans and stir fry for another 5 minutes or so.
  4. Add the black bean garlic sauce, cooking wine, and chili flakes. Toss everything together well and fry for 1-2 minutes more.
  5. Serve with brown rice or your noodle of choice.
How easy was that?  There are numerous ways to play around with this recipe...add mushrooms?  Bell peppers?  Use tempeh?  Seitan? Yes, yes, yes, and yes.  Even though the store-bought black bean garlic sauce is doing most of the work here, this is still a comforting homemade meal that you can whip up in no time.  No green beans?  Broccoli time!  No broccoli?  Use frozen peas!  I could go on and on, but you wouldn't want that.