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A Bit of this, A Bit of That …

February 23, 2011

I don’t have a particular theme for this post, so I’ve been having trouble coming up with a title. As I’m writing this I still haven’t decided, so it will be interesting to see with what I come up with at the end!

As it’s Wednesday I’ll start with seasonal food of the week. If you’re catching up, back in January I decided that I was going to try to eat more seasonally. I found a website (www.eattheseasons.co.uk) which posts a seasonal food of the week every Wednesday, along with information about its origin, when it’s traditionally in season, how to choose the best produce and some recipe suggestions. So far I’ve had parsnips (yuck – not a success), potatoes (a good staple) and oranges (my favourite so far). I was quite surprised at this week’s suggestion – passion fruit! I know oranges aren’t locally produced, but they are at least in season in the Mediterranean. Passion fruit is generally grown in Florida, California, Kenya and South Africa and is native to South America. The rationale on the website is that many northern hemisphere fruits are unavailable in the winter and good quality imports of passion fruit and other exotics such as pomegranate and pineapple are available.

So, I have added some passion fruit to my home shopping order this week as it’s not something I’ve ever tried at home before. However, I’m not sure it really fits in with the eating seasonally (which implies locally) theme. So, I have also ordered some kale, which believe it or not I’ve never tried. When I was younger we used to buy kale all the time, but that was because our guinea pigs loved it!

For the second part of my random post I thought I’d review some sprouted breads that I’ve been trying. I picked these up from my local health food shop quite a few weeks ago when they were on sale:

26Jan11(5)

I’ve already finished the sprouted hemp bread and really enjoyed it. It has a close, yet chewy and moist texture. It’s great either as it is or toasted and I detected a slightly earthy, even grassy taste. I got through that little loaf in just over a week and mostly ate it as snacks with hummus, nut butters or cottage cheese.

I was really excited to open up the sprouted spelt bread this morning. I cut myself a couple of slices and took it to work to eat with some hazelnut butter. The spelt bread isn’t as nice as the hemp one unfortunately. It was much drier and not as chewy. I’ll still enjoy eating the rest of it, but next time I’ll just get another hemp loaf (or several).

Part three of my ramblings concerns tofu. I first tried it in 2005 when I went to stay with a family in China for three months. Tofu featured quite heavily in their daily diet in many forms. I didn’t really like the meat that they served up (I won’t gross you out as I know many of you are vegetarian or vegan), so I relied on bean curd, edamame and fish for my protein. One observation I made in China was that many of the meals seemed vegan friendly – loads of tofu, fresh fruit and vegetables, no dairy, very few eggs. However, I did meet a vegan while I was there who basically had to give up as everything was cooked in lard and chicken stock. Another observation was that lard makes everything taste good (that’s not something I try to replicate in my cooking now!) I hadn’t had tofu since I returned to the UK and Chinese restaurants over here don’t tend to serve it (at least on the menu that they give to western customers). After starting to read healthy living blogs, which feature tofu quite heavily, I’ve decided to reconnect with my old friend.

So far I’ve baked and fried my tofu for using in salads, stir-fries and stews. Today, I made scrambled tofu for the first time:

23Feb11

I cooked it up with loads of veggies – in there is spinach, broccoli, mushrooms, courgette and half a chopped beef tomato. I flavoured it with a little soy sauce, some black pepper and cumin. It was yummy, and definitely something I’ll experiment with again, although I would drain more moisture out of the tofu next time. I baked what was left in the packet for lunches over the next couple of days.

The next thing that’s on my list is to make some sweet tofu recipes as I’ve seen some really nice looking ones on blogs. So, keep the recipe ideas coming because I want to keep experimenting!

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8 Comments leave one →
  1. February 23, 2011 9:25 pm

    I keep meaning to try out some of the tofu desserts, but I try to limit my consumption of processed soy (partly for environmental reasons, but more immediately, because it makes my GI system angry!). And I always seem to send up using it for savory meals. I love tofu scramble, for example!

    Good to read about the sprouted bread too. I usually eat dark rye bread, but my LHS has the stuff you tried, so I’m going to try that next time I go in there.

  2. February 23, 2011 9:28 pm

    I love tofu! I usually scramble it too- it cooks so quickly that way 🙂

  3. February 24, 2011 8:59 am

    That looks exactly like what I had for dinner the other day! I love tofu and eat it at least once a week its such a versatile ingredient 🙂

  4. February 24, 2011 9:24 am

    I like tofu- but I prefer it in savoury things. When I tried making it into a pudding, I found I needed a lot of sweetener to mask the beany taste. Although I think if I mixed it with pureed fruit and then baked it, I might have more success. I also have a recipe for brownies made with tofu, which is on my must try list 🙂

  5. February 24, 2011 8:25 pm

    Scrambled tofu is the BEST! Your meal looks SO YUMMY! 😀

    You HAVE to try tofu chocolate mousse!! I LOVE it! Chocolate Covered Katie has a great recipe for it- you should check it out! 🙂

  6. February 24, 2011 9:29 pm

    I would recommend freezing the tofu if you haven’t tried that already ~ it totally alters the texture and makes it more firm/apt to absorb flavours. The scramble looks amazing though.

    I am addicted to blended silken tofu desserts and had one today, although it was a bit of a fail as I used soft silken instead of firm and it turned out more like soup! Definitely go for the firm I think…

    I adore passion fruit and can’t wait to see what you do with it 🙂

    xxx

  7. February 24, 2011 9:57 pm

    I love scrambled tofu! I used to have it with wholewheat toast for breakfast, but recently i’ve only been craving sweet breakfasts! I might make it for lunch soon though 🙂

  8. February 24, 2011 10:14 pm

    WOW I love passion fruit, when I was growing up (in South Africa) we had a bush to the side of the house and would just help myself, I’m salivating just at the thought.

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