Posts tagged ‘tofu’

Wholesome noodles with a whole lot of choices for flavors

Quick MealToddler FoodParty FoodParallel ProcessingLunch Box MealKid FriendlyFamily MealTravel FriendlyNo Cooking

Noodles can be quiet tricky in being a family pleaser as they tend to have a redundant taste over and over again.  Here is a recipe idea with several choices for each layer of flavor and nutrition while making noodles.  This post is published in an attempt to get MTS readers to go on for a long while before you run out choices  for crowd pleasers.  All  permutations and combination mentioned in this post  make for wholesome meals with adequate protein + vegetables + good carbohydrates.

Cold noodles

Cold noodles

Kind of food: Appetizer/ Main course
How long: 20 min
Makes: Serves 4 adults
Pot & Pans: One large pan and wok or two pans

1 Tbsp cooking oil
Choices in noodle – rice sticks, rice noodles, egg noodles, whole wheat spaghetti, angel hair pasta, ramen noodles
Choices in veggie combination
A  total of  2 cups of a combination any of the following vegetables
1/2 cup finely chopped onions (scallions for cold noodles)
1/2 cup chopped tomatoes
1/2 cup chopped red bell peppers (or other colored peppers)
1/2 cup chopped matchstick carrots (available pre-cut in the produce section)
1/2 cup shredded cabbage (green or purple or napa)
1/2 cup thawed green peas/mushrooms/ water chestnuts/babycorn
Choice of protein – 1 /2 lb seafood or chicken (sliced thin) or 1/2 lb tofu or 4 eggs (boiled and cut into wedges or scrambled) or 2 cups bean sprouts
Choice of sauce –
1. Microwave 3 Tbsp peanut butter, 1/4 cup soy sauce , 2 Tbsp rice vinegar (or any other vinegar) , 2 tsp chili garlic sauce and 2 tsp brown sugar.  Add stock to get desired consistency.
Or 2. Microwave 3 Tbsp peanut butter, 1/4 cup coconut milk, 2Tbsp soy sauce , 1 tsp chili garlic sauce and 2 tsp brown sugar.  Add stock to get desired consistency.
Or 3. Microwave 3 Tbsp Soy sauce, 2 Tbsp bean paste, 1 tsp fish sauce, 2 tsp rice wine vinegar, 1 tsp chili garlic paste. Add stock to get desired consistency.
Or 4.  Microwave 3 Tbsp Tomato ketchup, 1/4 cup soy sauce , 2 Tbsp rice vinegar (or any other vinegar) , 2 tsp chili garlic sauce and 2 tsp brown sugar.  Add stock to get desired consistency.
Or 5. Microwave 3 Tbsp Hoisin sauce, 1/4 cup soy sauce , 2 Tbsp rice vinegar (or any other vinegar) , 2 tsp chili garlic sauce and 2 tsp brown sugar.  Add stock to get desired consistency.
Note:  The need to microwave the sauces is to make sure all the ingredients mix thoroughly. So warm up the ingredients for the sauce for a few seconds and do not boil the sauce.

Choice of herbs- 1/4 cup fine chopped cilantro or mint or basil (optional)
Additional flavors –
2 Tbsp  ginger and garlic chopped fine + optional- 1 tsp green chili (Thai or Anaheim) chopped fine

Warm noodles

Warm noodles

How to make:
Prepare the noodles as per package directions and drain completely.  Note: Some noodles like rice sticks just need to be soaked in hot water, so make sure to follow packet directions.
While the noodles are getting done chop and dice vegetables, meat and herbs. If using chicken, tofu or seafood  stir fry these  with 1 Tbsp of soy sauce and chilli garlic sauce until cooked in a hot pan/wok with 1 tsp oil.

For warm noodles: Remove the chicken, tofu or seafood from the pan and add the veggie mixture, ginger, garlic and green chili (if used) and continue to stir fry on high heat for 2- 4 minutes.  Add the sauce of your choice.  Toss in the noodles. Stir fry for a couple more minutes while tossing in the protein choice. Take it off the heat, and mix in the chopped herb (cilantro or mint or basil)

For cold noodles: To the drained noodles add 1 tsp of vegetable oil to prevent it from clumping.  Warm up one tsp of hot oil and cook the ginger, garlic and green chili.  Add this to the sauce of your choice and garnish it with the herb of your choice (cilantro or mint or basil).  Serve the noodle on a platter and spread the veggie mixture and then the cooked protein mixture on top as two layers.  Serve the sauce on the side.

Make it Fast, Fun, and Facile! – Sri

Tip,tricks and alternatives
Children love the idea of noodles, so varying the flavor and texture of noodles (and the choice of the noodle itself) will help win many a meal time battles :).  Also, cold noodles are perfect for road trips and for picnics.


April 12, 2009 at 8:37 pm 1 comment

Curried tofu stir fry

Quick MealParty FoodLunch Box MealFamily Meal

A aroma of the spices used in Indian cuisine has a unique appeal. A little goes a long way too.. for flavor, color, interest and to simply enhance any ingredient. Tofu is a very versatile and goof source of protein. Tofu by itself hardly has any flavor, but it does have a great texture, especially when stir fried.  Stir fried tofu can be a very easy and quick snack or meal, and adding some quick Indian flavors to it can make it very interesting.  This recipe is very fast, and perfect for any occasion. A trip to an Indian grocery store and stocking up some basic pre-made spice powders is the key to this recipe.  A pack of spice will last for months, so its worth the effort and sure to impress.

Indian tofy stir fry

Kind of food: Side, Main course
How long: 15 min
How much: Makes 4 cups
Pot & pans: One large stir fry pan

1 box of Firm tofu  – 12oz pack – cubed
1 Red bell pepper – cubed
1 small onion – diced
1 tbsp oil
1 tsp Cumin
1 small green chili
1 tbsp Tava fry masala*** (read note in the bottom for masala ideas)
Salt to taste
1 tbsp Cilantro – finely chopped

How to make:
Place a stir fry pan or large nonstick pan on medium-high heat. Place 1 tbsp oil. While the pan is warming up, cut and prepare your vegetables and tofu. Add cumin and green chili to the oil and saute for a few seconds.  Now add the onions and bell peppers and saute for a couple of minutes. Cover for another 2 minutes. Add the tofu, salt and masala powder. Give it all a good toss and fry for another 3-4 mins till the tofu browns a little bit.  Remove from the heat, pour it out onto a serving plate and sprinkle with finely chopped cilantro.

Keep it Smart, Short and Sazzy! – Anu

Serving ideas
The tofu stir fry is a very flavorful recipe. Depending on your taste, you can adjust the masala or flavoring and serve with steamed rice, Indian flat breads like naan or  rotis.
The Tofu also makes a great filling for a pita sandwich.
For great tasting naans  – check our our Tips on making super quick Naans from flat breads.
Naans are also readily available in chain grocery stores or in Indian stores.

*** How to buy masalas and spices in an Indian store?

March 26, 2009 at 8:41 am Leave a comment

Whole wheat penne & grilled tofu pasta

Quick MealLunch Box MealFamily Meal

Whole wheat pastas can add a lot of texture, taste and nutrition to the food. This whole wheat penne pasta recipe is quite light and makes for a perfect lunch pasta. It is almost like a pasta salad and stores well for a lunch box.

Whole wheat penne and tofu pasta

Kind of food: Main course
How long: 20 min
Makes: 8 cups (serves 2 adults)
Pot and Pans: Grill/griddle, Pot, pan.

2 cups dry pasta – Whole wheat penne pasta
2 tbsp Olive oil
2 cups tofu – cubed
2 tbsp Soy sauce
1 cup spinach – chopped or baby spinach
1/2 cup onions – chopped (red onions or shallots recommended)
1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes ( drained from the oil)
2 tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
Salt & pepper to taste
1/4 cup grated Parmesan-Reggiano cheese

Grilled tofu

How to make:
Set  a pot of water, cover and heat it to a boil (as per the instructions on the pasta box). While the water is heating up, set a grill/griddle on high heat. Once the grill is hot, place the tofu cubes and drizzle a little oil and soy sauce. Sear the tofu till its browned on one side, flip them and sear the other side.  Tofu grills very quickly, a minute or two on each side should be sufficient.  Place the dry pasta in the boiling water and cook as per instructions ( about 12 min – set the timer). On a pan or pot heat 2 tbsp of olive oil.  Add the onions, spinach and sun-dried tomatoes and give it a good toss and saute for a couple of minutes. Add the balsamic vinegar, salt & pepper and saute for another 2 min.  Set the pan on very low heat. Drain the pasta and add the pasta to the pan. Turn up the heat and give the mixture a good mix.  Pour the pasta onto a paste bowl or plate. Top with the grilled tofu and grated parmesan cheese.  Serve warm.

Whoe wheat penne pasta
Keep it Smart, Short and Sazzy! – Anu

Tips, tricks and alternatives
You can use a pan to grill the tofu. Its it just quicker to use a cast iron griddle.
You grill a big batch of tofu and store it in the freezer. Simply defrost and warm on a pan before adding to the pasta. When you have some tofu and not sure what to do with it, grill it with soy sauce and store it.

December 30, 2008 at 11:32 pm Leave a comment

Chilli Chicken with out deep frying (with vegeterian option)

Quick MealParty FoodLunch Box MealKid FriendlyFamily Meal

There are a few versions of this classic Indian dish.  Adhering to the theme of this website, here is a simple way to make the classic south Indian style chili chicken with not much effort.  Also, this method does not involve deep frying (calories form fat) to cheer up those of us who watch what we eat.


4 Tbsp of store bought chilli chicken masala  powder* (add more if you want it spicy)
3 Tbsp of yogurt
1 Lb of  Chicken pieces (variety of thigh, breast meat, legs and wings)
1 Lb of potato or paneer or tofu (cut in big chunks)
1 green chili slit in the center without cutting it into two halves
2 Tbsp olive oil
*If you do not have access to store bought chilli chicken masala powder, then here is the recipe for chili chicken masala
1 Tbsp of coriander powder
1 Tbsp of Madras curry powder
1 tsp of chili powder
1 Tbsp of ginger garlic paste
1 Tbsp of vinegar
1 Tbsp of corn flour
Salt as per taste
Note:  Salt is added in most store bought chili chicken masala powder.

Pots and Pans:Non stick pan

How to make
Make a paste of yogurt and chili chicken masala to prepare the marinade. Marinate the chicken (or potatoes/paneer) in marinade. Marinate the chicken for at least 1 hour or until cooking time in the refrigerator. Heat 1 Tbsp of olive oil in a non stick pan on medium heat. Add the green chili. Now add the chicken pieces and DO NOT move them.  After 5 minutes turn the chicken and cook on the other side until cooked thoroughly. You could close and cook the chicken too.

Make it Fast, Fun, and Facile! – Sri

Tips, tricks and alternatives
You could use soy chunks (dry ones) soaked in warm water for 10 minutes instead of chicken.
Paneer and tofu will cook faster than chicken or potato. So watch carefully to prevent it from burning.
Left over chili chicken (or chili potato) can be used to make chicken salad when shredded and mixed mayo, chopped apples, celery, and raisins. Use this mixture in between lettuce in sandwiches or wrap for lunch.

Serving ideas
Garnish with thinly sliced onion and lemon wedges.
For younger children, the inner pieces of the cooked chicken can be give to avoid the spice.

December 23, 2008 at 5:00 am Leave a comment

Tri-colored cilantro rice

Quick MealToddler FoodLunch Box MealKid FriendlyFamily Meal

A one pot meal, that provides for adequate protein, carbohydrate and vitamin nutrition requirement.  The three colors (red, white and green) offer for a very appealing visual. After all, we all eat with our eyes first.

TriColor rice

Kind of Food: Main course
How long: 30 min
Makes: Two quarts / 8 cups
Pots & Pans: Skillet and blender

3 cups of rice (preferably basmati)
2 cups of chopped cilantro (include stems too)
1 green chilly (add more if you prefer it spicy)
2 Tbsp Fennel seeds
2 Tbsp oil
1 14 Oz pack of Tofu (chopped into 1″ cubes) drained completely
2 red peppers cut in thin strips
1 Tbsp ghee (optional)
Salt as per requirement

How to make
Cook rice as you normally would (pressure cook/microwave/stockpot) with 1 tsp of salt.  Cool the rice completely and fluff with a fork to avoid the formation of lumps. When the rice is cooking grind cilantro, green chilly and fennel seeds into a fine paste with very little water.  Heat a skillet with oil and add the tofu. Saute the tofu on medium high heat for 5 minutes or until it browns lightly.  Add the cilantro paste, red bell peppers and salt and cook for 3-4 minutes. Add cooled rice, salt and ghee. Saute this mixture for 3 minutes or until all the ingredients are well incorporated.

Make it Fast, Fun, and Facile! – Sri

Catering to the adult palate
You could add more green chillies to make it spicier.  Better yet, keep it simple by setting aside some of the tri-colored rice for the kids and sauteing the rest of the tri-colored rice with pepper powder and a tsp of ghee.  Using wild rice will provide for an interesting texture.

Tips, Tricks and Alternatives
Paneer can be used instead of tofu.
Mint can be used to make tri-colored mint rice using this recipe.
A mixture of mint and cilantro can be used to make cilantro-mint rice.

Serving Ideas
1.  Serve with dal, any curry, raita, fried fish or chicken.
2.  Grilled chicken, fish or shrimp can be platted on a bed of this tri-colored rice.
Various colored peppers will provide a beautiful visual appeal.
To serve toddlers, set aside the required quantity of tri-colored rice for the toddler and cut the pepper and tofu in the set aside portion to pea size pieces. Thus you do not have to fine chop the veggies and tofu for the entire batch.

November 20, 2008 at 11:08 pm Leave a comment

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