If you scratched your head at the title of this recipe like I did, trust me. Or rather trust Yotam Ottolenghi. You won’t regret it. The combination of brussels sprouts, mushrooms and a sweet and spicy marinade makes for a plate you won’t turn down.
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This recipe, from Plenty, opened my eyes to the possibilities of one skillet cooking. While you marinate the tofu, prepare all the vegetables and have everything ready to go. Then it’s a matter of cooking all of the ingredients over high heat…just not all at once.
Of course it’s not unusual to cook a protein and set it aside while you cook the rest of the dish but the difference this time is the vegetables are set aside. First the brussels sprouts, then the mushrooms. Finally the tofu is cooked and everything is combined and returned to the pan to be served.
There are lots of colors, smells and sounds going on with this dish. There’s the red of the sweet chili marinade, the green of the sprouts and the earthy tones of the mushrooms. When you add the red pepper flakes to the oil, the steam might make your nose run a little bit. Then there’s the hiss of the pan as each new ingredient is introduced to the heat.
Look at me getting poetic over brussels sprouts! hahaha
Let me encourage you to give this recipe a try, especially if you’re a sprouts lover like I am.
- 2 tablespoons sweet chili sauce (I used sriracha)
- 1½ tablespoons soy sauce (I used tamari)
- 3 tablespoons sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 5 ounce serving of firm tofu, cut into slices and then squares or triangles (mine was 160 grams, slightly larger)
- 1 pound brussels sprouts, trimmed and cut into halves or quarters (I used frozen...thaw before using)
- ½ small red chili, deseeded and finely chopped (I used ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes)
- 1 cup sliced green onions (I used leeks)
- 1½ cup shiitake mushrooms, chopped (I used a mixed pack)
- 1 cup chopped cilantro (I used parsley)
- toasted sesame seeds for garnish
- about ½ cup sunflower or other neutral oil for stir frying
- salt to taste
- Have everything prepared and ready to go before you start cooking. You'll need a large skillet and a large bowl as well.
- Prepare the marinade and add the tofu, turning to coat. Leave alone while preparing the vegetables.
- When everything is ready, heat about 3 tablespoons of oil in a heavy skillet over high heat.
- Add the brussels sprouts in a single layer. Season with salt and cook without disturbing for two minutes or so. You want the sprouts to take on some char and cook through. Work in batches to avoid crowding the pan, adding more oil and salt with each new batch.
- Transfer the cooked sprouts to a large bowl. Repeat with the rest of the sprouts.
- Add a little more oil and the red pepper flakes.
- Saute the mushrooms, leeks and about half the chopped parsley until heated through and the mushrooms have taken on a bit of color.
- Transfer the mushrooms to the same bowl as the sprouts. Stir gently to combine.
- Use tongs to place the tofu pieces in the hot pan without crowding. Cook for about two minutes on each side. As with the brussels sprouts, some char is desireable.
- While the tofu is cooking, add the marinade to the bowlful of veggies and gently combine.
- Remove the skillet from the heat and transfer the tofu to a platter.
- Return the vegetables to the pan and use the residual heat to warm everything through again. Taste and adjust the salt as desired.
- Arrange the tofu slices on top of the veg (alternatively you could stir into the mix as well). Then garnish with the remaining parsley, sesame seeds and a little drizzle of the sesame oil if desired.
- The dish should be served warm, not sizzling hot.