I think this was a recipe request that I got from several sources but I could never remember who. Someone on the facebook page asked for it and someone at home asked for it (but he claims he wanted Orange TEMPEH… and couldn’t figure out why I used tofu. Whatever. I’ll make it with tempeh later.)
It turns out that when I made the tempura vegetables I figured out how to make things taste like they are “battered” – THAT is what I wanted for the orange tofu. I like the sticky sweet battered part the most.
I haven’t been out to eat at a Chinese restaurant in FOR-EV-ER! I always felt sick afterwards or just way too .. heavy. Or greasy! Have you felt like your face is going to break out from all of the oil you just consumed? I sure as heck feel that way!
This doesn’t give you that feeling at all. It’s light but still full of flavor. I could probably pour the orange sauce on anything and call it dinner though.
Don’t worry. I also notice the severe lack of vegetables in these pictures. We had some quick cooked broccoli on the side. I just didn’t feel like throwing it all together tonight. You should feel free to add any quickly steamed vegetables (or raw!) to this. Bell peppers, carrots, onions, snow peas and broccoli come to mind first…
You know, I bet just a bunch of steamed vegetables with this sauce would be excellent. See? I told you I could put this sauce all over something and call it a meal. I might have to do that tonight because I have some leftover rice calling my name…
*You don’t have to coat the tofu if you don’t want to. You can just bake the tofu in the oven until crispy. I suggest sprinkling it with a bit of salt before baking. Bake at the same temperature until the tofu has started to lightly brown.
*Fresh juice is really key here. Just grab a few oranges and SQUEEZE!!!!!!!
*You can use a dry sweetener of your choice instead of the agave, no big deal.
- 12 oz firm tofu, pressed
- 1/4 cup rice flour
- 1/4 cup club soda
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3/4 cup fresh orange juice (about 3 large oranges)
- zest of 1 orange
- 2 Tablespoons rice vinegar
- 2 Tablespoons soy sauce (or tamari)
- 3 Tablespoons agave (you can sub any sweetener you’d like)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced or grated with microplane
- 2 teaspoons grated ginger (fresh)
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed chile flakes
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 Tablespoons cornstarch disolved in 1/4 cup water
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Cut tofu into 1/2″ cubes. Mix together the rice flour, club soda, baking powder and salt. Dip each square of tofu into the batter and shake off the excess. Place it on the parchment lined baking sheet and repeat with the remaining pieces. Place in the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes or until the pieces are nice and browned.
To make the sauce: Combine all of the sauce ingredients (except the cornstarch disolved in water) in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Once boiling add in the cornstarch and water mixture. Whisk the sauced until thickened.
Toss the tofu cubes and sauce together until coated. Serve with some rice and maybe a few extra hot peppers if you’re feeling spicy!
Nutritional information per serving : Serving size: 1/4 recipe
7 WWPointsPlus, 185 calories, 7.8g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 31.5g carbohydrates, 2.5g fiber, 16.1g sugar, 14.5g protein
This is something that i’ve forgotten I loved. Ranch. I’m not a huge salad person but ranch goes on ANYTHING doesn’t it?
Well, it shouldn’t. I mean the original stuff. That stuff is bad for you. I used to eat a lot of it in high-school. Especially freshman year. Every day I would get (was it one or two?) slices of peperoni pizza, a thing of fries and TWO ranch dressings to dip all that stuff in. Even though I walked all the way to school and back I still packed on the pounds. I was chubby before then and I got even bigger during that year. As a kid you KNOW that it’s not GOOD for you but I didn’t know how BAD for me it really was. I didn’t know how good it could taste to eat other stuff.
Like this stuff. This is low calorie, nut free, vegan, fresh and super yummy if you ask me. So yeah this is good on salad. Or as a dip for veggies. Or on some baked potato fries. Or on tacos (try it!) As a sandwich spread. I could go on, but I’d love to hear YOUR favorite way to eat ranch – let me know in the comments!
*You can make this with dried herbs if you absolutely cannot find fresh (I know how it is!) Just use about 1/3rd of the amount (So for example use only 1 Tablespoon of dried parsley instead of 3 Tablespoons)
*This is a really thick dressing so you can always thin it out with a bit more soy milk (or your favorite milk alternative.) I would ad 1/4 cup at a time and then check the seasonings.
*The garlic in this one can be a bit “ZING” on the first day. Let it mellow out in the fridge and that crazy twang will go away. This didn’t happen every time I’ve made the ranch, only with a new batch of garlic I got so it could be that.
makes about 2 & 1/4 cup
- 1 box Mori-nu Lite Firm Silken Tofu (Or Mori-nu Firm Silken Tofu)
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1/2 cup soy milk (or your favorite milk alternative)
- 1 large clove garlic or two smaller clove
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 3 Tablespoons minced chive
- 3 Tablespoons finely minced parsley
- 1 Tablespoon minced dill
Blend everything but the chives, parsley and dill together in a blender or with your immersion blender until very smooth. Stir in your chopped herbs. Store in an airtight container in your fridge for about a week – I’m being conservative here for safety’s sake but I’ve kept it a few days past that. (You can half the recipe if you don’t think you’ll go through very much of it.)
Nutritional information per serving : Serving size: 1/4 cup (dressing Calculated using Mori-nu LITE Firm Silken Tofu)
1 WWPointsPlus, 21 calories, 0.5g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 1.3g carbohydrates, 0g fiber, 1g sugar, 2.8g protein
(1/2 cup is still 1 point!)
I asked for any food requests on the Fo Reals Life facebook page and was met with only one response: Reubens.
Heck yeah, I thought! I love the flavors of a reuben! I am a huge sauerkraut fan, I love rye bread, and I love the Russian dressing. While this looks crazy bad for you, it’s really not that bad. It’s not an every day food, for sure. While you’re eating it though you will swear that you are downing at least 1000 calories. Nope, more like 350. Not bad for a crazy filling and delicious sandwich if you ask me!
I also threw in a little innovation of my own in here. (I can’t help myself!) The tempeh is marinated in a really yummy coriander and beer mixture. Then I added a bit of chipotle powder to the Russian dressing – for you know, kicks!
How do I make all of this plant-strong without mayo, oil, margarine, etc? It took some thinking, some playing around and some (if I do say so myself) good ideas.
See how toasty crusty the bread is? Yeah.. that. Mmmm…
First I made some tofu spread with Mori-nu silken tofu, soy milk, salt and lemon juice. Easy, right? I was going to just use that as the base of my Russian dressing but then I became inspired. I spread some on the bread and put it spread side down onto a hot nonstick pan. Wait for it.. wait.. and boom! Toasty, brown, crusty, moist and yummy bread.
Once you have the sauce and the tempeh made assembly is easy. Just toast up you bread real quick (or you can toast the whole sandwich if you prefer!) and then spread your bread with the dressing. Both sides if you’re feeling indulgent.
Add the Coriander – Beer Tempeh…
And some drained sauerkraut – I like a LOT on my sandwiches.
- 8 oz tempeh, sliced into 1/4 inch slices
- 1 cup beer (not an IPA)
- 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp sugar
- 12oz box Mori-nu Silken Lite Tofu
- 1/2 cup soy milk
- juice 1/2 lemon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup tofu mayo (see recipe below!)
- 2 Tablespoons ketchup
- 2 teaspoons pickle relish (or chopped pickles)
- 1 Tablespoon minced onion
- 1/2 teaspoon horseradish (the grated kind, not the prepared one with other ingredients) – optional
- 1/2 teaspoon chipotle powder – optional
- 2 cups sauerkraut, drained
- 8 slices rye bread
To make the tempeh:
Toast the coriander seeds in a dry pan over medium high heat for a minute or two, or until fragrant. Add in the beer, sugar and salt and stir until the salt and sugar are disolved. Add the tempeh.
You can marinate that mixture in a sealed container for several hours if you wish or you can go ahead and cook from here. Just take the mixture out of the container and place all of it back into the pan (marinade and all) when you are ready to cook it.
Turn the heat up to high and start cooking down the liquid. You want to cook this until the tempeh has absorbed all of the liquid and starts to brown. Stir frequently to prevent sticking. You may want to adjust the heat down so that it does not burn.
To make the Russian Dressing:
First make the tofu mayo: Blend together the mori-nu tofu, soy milk, salt and lemon juice. Leftovers will keep in the refrigerator for about a week.
Next: mix together 1/3 cup of the tofu mayo you just made, pickles, ketchup, onion, horseradish and chipotle powder. Check for seasoning and add more salt if desired.
To make the toasted bread:
Spread one side of each slice of bread with about a tablespoon of the tofu mayo you just made. You want a very thin and even coating of it.
Toast in a hot nonstick skillet until nice and browned.
Assemble your sandwiches as you desire them (using the above photos as a guide if you wish.) Enjoy!
Nutritional information per serving : Serving size: 1 sandwich
9 WWPointsPlus, 350 calories, 9.4g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 44.3g carbohydrates, 6g fiber, 2.7g sugar, 22.1g protein
New video! Yay! Check out my rockstar hairdo and see how I make these veggies – while it is super simple I give a few extra tips and show you how to make this dipping sauce!
I love vegetables prepared in all sorts of ways – very plain and steamed, thrown into a soup, in a stir-fry, on a sandwich, whatever really. I don’t do fried anything any longer now that I am Plant Strong but I was still missing that yummy crunchy coated taste you get from tempura vegetables. I started playing around and made at least 25 batches of these baked tempura vegetables.
They are beer battered (because that’s what tasted the BEST but I did try it without and will leave it up to you to decide) and they are flavored with some sriracha (also, optional if you are terrified of it – I guess!!)
Other than sriracha and beer you’re just going to need some rice flour. Brown rice flour or white rice flour will do. Oh and some tamari for flavor. See? Use the tamari and a good gluten-free beer and now you’re good to go, celiacs!
*You can use brown rice or white rice flour but I do NOT recommend regular wheat flour. It turns out kind of gluey. Rice flour will be more crisp like you want!
*You can substitute club soda for the beer if you want.
Baked Tempura Vegetables
- 1/2 cup + 1 Tablespoon brown rice flour
- 1/2 cup beer
- 2 Tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon to 2 Tablespoons sriracha (depending on your tastes!)
- A variety of cut up veggies – mushrooms, onions, broccoli, cauliflower, potato, sweet potato, green beans, asparagus, carrots, zucchini, any squash, etc. Slice thin or cut into bite sized pieces if they are hard to slice like broccoli or cauliflower.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Mix the rice flour, beer, tamari, baking powder and sriracha together until smooth. Dip each vegetable piece into the batter and shake off the excess. Place onto the parchment lined baking sheet making sure to leave room between the vegetables.
Once your tray is filled put it in the oven and bake for 15 minutes.
Remove from the oven and take the parchment paper off the pan so that it can cool faster. I usually wait for about 30 seconds to a minute to pull off the vegetables so that they can cool slightly.
These are best eaten right away though so don’t let them cool too long! Serve with your favorite dipping sauce (I make one in the video that is really simple!)
Nutritional information per serving : Serving size: 1/4th of the batter mixture – does not include the vegetables (I know, that’s not the easiest to figure out but make all of it and split into portions!)
2 WWPointsPlus, 87 calories, 0.6g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 16.9g carbohydrates, 1g fiber, 0.3g sugar, 1.6g protein
It’s one of those days.. ya know what I’m talking about? Where you are supposed to profess your love.
Let me profess mine: I love soup. (In case you’re new here – I love soup.)
And many days, I love simple meals as well.
This came to me when I was trying to think of what to do with some pantry items. I usually have lentils and usually some barley as well. That’s all fine and dandy but you need something else with those things to make a soup that could proudly be called a meal.
Ahh yes.. the chard just waiting in my fridge. And chard, like many greens, does not wait long. Sometimes I find that the best dishes are made out of desperation. (Not the best decisions are made in the same way, mind you.)
You could of course use kale or spinach instead. You know what you love and I’m sure you’ll make it with that. If you haven’t really given chard much of a chance though I suggest you try it. It’s very “earthy” and that melds perfectly with barley and lentils.
So warm yourself up with a big bowl of soup today. It will pretty much cancel out all of that chocolate you’re going to eat later!
*Use whatever kind of greens you like in this soup. Tender greens like spinach should be added in at the last minute.
*This makes a lot of soup but you can keep it in the refrigerator for up to a week or freeze it and have some later!
serves about 10 – 1 cup servings
- 2 quarts vegetable broth (8 cups)
- 1 cup pearled barley (barley groats will take far longer to cook)
- 1 cup red lentils
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 Tablespoon fresh rosemary, minced
- 6 cups chopped swiss chard (1 large bunch)
- salt and fresh cracked black pepper to taste
Bring everything but the chard to a boil in a large pot over high heat. Once it is boiling turn the heat to low and put on the lid. Simmer for 35-40 minutes.
Add in the swiss chard and let simmer for about 5 minutes, or until slightly tender. Add salt and pepper to taste. (Your broth may be very salty or not at all so I am sure you will find the right balance yourself.)
Serve with warm crusty bread and maybe a fresh raw salad.
Nutritional information per serving : Serving size: 1 cup
3 WWPointsPlus, 126 calories, 0.4g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 26.3g carbohydrates, 7g fiber, 2.9g sugar, 5.7g protein
As a former and reformed cheese addict I must say that I do spend a bit of my time working on substitutes for that cheesy flavor. I’ve got a few that are in “testing” phase but this one was just too good to not share.
One thing I do is add miso to TONS of stuff because I think it gives that salty fermented flavor that is really core to cheese. I believe that it is essential to this and other dishes when I call for it. If you can’t find it at your local grocery store try to find an Asian market and stock up. I would suggest getting some light mellow miso (white or shiro) or some yellow miso – darker stuff can be overpowering in cheesy dishes but it does taste amazing as soup. This stuff keeps for a VERY VERY long time if properly refrigerated so buy more than you think you need. I go through at least a pound of it a month.
Tofu Feta on a Tostada
This stuff is kind of neat to make because while it marinates the texture of the tofu changes. It becomes more crumbly and wonderful. My 2 year old daughter LOVES this stuff (but she IS a tofu-freak!)
Just think of all the things you can put this stuff on. Here it is pictured on a tostada (it’s pretending to be cotija) and we also had some on salads. And pizza. And sandwiches. And pitas. And in dips. (I’ll share some of those recipes with you next time!) I think you’ll be able to find a way to use it up.
*Use firm or extra firm tofu for this application.
*Don’t be afraid of all of that sodium. Feta is meant to be used sparingly to add flavor. A little will go a long way!
*Once made it should keep in the refrigerator for about a week. I do not recommend freezing any extras.
Easy Tofu Feta
- 1 lb firm tofu, pressed and cut into 1/2 inch cubes
- 2 Tablespoons white or yellow miso
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- juice of 1 lemon
- 1 cup water
Bring all of the ingredients to a simmer in a small saucepan over medium high heat. Put on the lid and simmer for about 15 minutes.
Let cool and then transfer to a container with a lid (I recommend glass containers.) Let it marinate in the refrigerator for at least 12 hours but if you wait 24 hours the texture changes and it becomes more crumbly.
Nutritional information per serving : Serving size: 1 oz
1 WWPointsPlus, 23 calories, 1g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 1g carbohydrates, 0g fiber, 0g sugar, 3g protein
We have moved!! Forealsmom.com is now posting at FoRealsLife.com !!!!
Hooray! To celebrate our new name and new website I’m giving away (1) Cuisinart 2 Speed Immersion Blender!! This is my #1 tool in the kitchen. You can use it to make quick sauces, hummus, creamy soups, shakes, whatever! I use it at least twice a day so I bet you can find some good use out of it!
So! How do you enter?! EASY!!! Just LIKE the new Fo Reals Life facebook page and enter it here through Rafflecopter! Please share the giveaway and the new page – sharing is nice, you guys, didn’t your mommas tell ya?
(The giveaway is open to US residents only, sorry!)
Some quick questions you may have:
1.) What about all of my bookmarks/pins/etc?!??!? YOU DIDN’T DELETE THEM, DID YOU?!
No! We are working very hard to redirect all previous links to the new site. Forealsmom.com will stay up until everything is properly redirected. I do not want anyone to lose their way!
2.) Why the heck did you change the name?
Well.. because! I wanted to include everyone, not just moms. That means men too! I love men – and I want them to feel comfortable liking the page. Even my own man said he wouldn’t have “liked” it on facebook if it wasn’t mine. Ouch! And with less than 5% of my audience showing up as men I believe it was the right thing to do. Also, it’s NOT a mommy blog. Sure, I’m a mom. And i’m still FO REALS MOM. But the website, the brand, etc is not just for moms. Change is good – embrace it!
3.) Is this a sponsored giveaway?
Nope. I’m giving because I love giving! (Bought it with my own pennies!)
**I’ve probably forgot some stuff but let me know what you think of the new website!!! I realize that the tabs are not filled in yet and that’s something at the top of my list. We just barely got this baby up today so there is much to do!!!**