Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Mushrooms and Tofu in Paprika Cream over Egg Noodles

From 52veggie
This week I am choosing a few recipes from This Can't Be Tofu by Deborah Madison, the author of Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone. The cookbook is intended for all of us who are intimidated by the squiggy wet block of mushy whiteness that tofu can be.

I was surprised that many of the recipes in this book aren't vegetarian (although in most cases she gives vegetarian adaptations), but I suppose the purpose is more to introduce methods of cooking tofu.

I chose this recipe because I had a bunch of mushrooms in the fridge I needed to use. I wasn't sure I would like the flavor, which is largely based on traditional stroganoff, which I never had while still a meat eater.

My favorite part of this recipe was cooking the tofu, because the small squares dance around the pan and start to make squeaky sounds as they cook. Instead of using the entire recommended amount, I saved half for the pad thai I'm cooking later in the week.

This is not vegan, but I am certain this could easily be adapted by substituting vegan sour cream or soy yogurt instead of regular sour cream. I happened to have sour cream in the fridge, so I went ahead and used it. This is the second recipe I've used sour cream in recently and I have to admit I'm not sure I care for its flavor after it is heated.

I didn't have any white wine on hand, so I used vegetable stock for that too, as well as using oil instead of butter.

Mushrooms and Tofu in Paprika Cream over Egg Noodles

1/2 cup sour cream
1 carton firm tofu, drained
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp butter (can substitute margarine or more oil)
1 onion, finely diced
1 pound mushrooms, sliced
juice of 1/2 lemon
1 tbsp flour
1 1/2 tbsp mild (sweet) paprika
1/3 cup white wine or sherry
2/3 cup water or vegetable stock
2 tbsp chopped dill or 1 tbsp chopped tarragon
8 oz egg noodles

1. Let the sour cream come up to room temperature.

2. Dice the tofu into 1/2" cubes. Set a nonstick or cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat and brush lightly with oil. Add the tofu and cook until golden on the bottom, about 3 minutes. Turn to brown the other sides. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, them remove to a dish.

3. Add the oil and butter to a pan. When it foams, add the onion and mushrooms, squeezing the lemon over the mushrooms so that they keep their color. Cook until the mushrooms are browned and the onions are soft, about 8 minutes. Add the tofu and gently mix together.

4. Sprinkle over the flour and paprika, then season with 1/2 tsp salt and pepper. Turn the mixture to incorporate the flour, and add the wine, let it bubble up, then reduce until syrupy. Add the water, reduce the heat to medium-low, and cook, covered, for 15 minutes. Check once or twice to make sure there's enough liquid to make a little sauce. If not, add more water or stock as needed. Taste for salt. Cook the egg noodles until al dente, then drain and place on a warmed plate.

5. Rewarm the sauce, if necessary, then turn off the heat, add the fresh herb and stir in the sour cream. Pour over the egg noodles and serve.

I wish I had wine when I made this, because I think that would have added a depth of flavor that I felt was lacking. I'm not sure I would make this again. If I did, I would double the amount of mushrooms and leave the onions and tofu out. They seemed unnecessary and made it more bland rather than enhancing the flavor. It didn't help that it looked like a curry and didn't taste like one.

Categories: Mushrooms, Pasta, Tofu


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