Sweet & Sour Vegetable and Tofu Stir-Fry

While out on our walk the other night Kesa and Autumn were telling jokes to each other. At first they started out as real jokes, for example Autumn would say, “What did the shovel say to the dirt?… I dig you!” But after a while they became less and less funny, like “What did the pine tree say to the birch tree?… I’m pokier than you!”

So after a while of listening to them go on and on, Craig decided to ask Kesa, “What did the daddy say to the children?” She quickly replied with “It’s past bedtime!” We all laughed so hard. Then I had to ask Kesa, “What did the mommy say to the children?” She responded with absolute certainty, “It’s time to eat!”

Sweet and Sour Vegetable and Tofu Stir-Fry

Serves 4

Ingredients

Brown Rice –

  • 3 cups water
  • 1 1/2 cups brown rice

For the Stir-Fry –

  • 350 g extra firm tofu, pressed
  • 2 tablespoons sunflower oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 3 ribs of celery, chopped
  • 1 orange bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 head of broccoli, chopped into florets
  • 1/3 cup water

Sweet and Sour Sauce –

  • 3/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 3/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 (156 ml) can tomato paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • 2 tablespoons tapioca starch + 1/4 cup cold water

Directions

Bring the 3 cups of water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add the brown rice, return to a boil then reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 45 minutes. While the rice is cooking, prepare the stir-fry.

Cut the pressed tofu width-wise into 1/2 inch slices. Cut each slice of tofu in half diagonally in make tofu triangles. Heat a non-stick skillet on medium-high heat and dry fry the tofu 3-5 minutes on each side, until lightly browned then set aside.

Prepare the sweet and sour sauce by whisking together the apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, tomato paste, ground ginger and sesame seeds in a 4 cup liquid measuring cup. In a separate small dish, whisk together the tapioca starch and cold water. Add the starch/water mixture to the rest of the sauce ingredients and set aside.

Heat the sunflower oil in a large skillet or wok on medium heat. Add the chopped onion and saute a few minutes, until fragrant.

Add the rest of the vegetables and the 1/3 cup of water. Stir, cover and cook for 10-12 minutes, removing the cover and stirring often throughout the cooking time, until the broccoli is fork-tender.

Once the vegetables have cooked, add the sweet and sour sauce and continue to stir and cook about 5 minutes more, bringing the stir-fry to a light boil, until the sauce has thickened.

Add the tofu triangles and cook a few minutes more, until the entire mixture is hot and glazed in the sweet and sour sauce.

Serve on a bed of brown rice.

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