We've been going a bit mad for Isa's recipes lately, shifting gears from the hearty queso bowl to this brighter, more summery salad. We had cucumber and noodles to use up and this combination of smokey tofu, tart grapefruit and mint seemed like a great way to go about it. It's all pretty simple to make - the tofu gets a quick fry, the noodles boiled and everything else just mixed together and combined.
The meal didn't work quite as well as I'd hoped. Our choice of thin vermicelli noodles was probably a mistake - they didn't combine that well with the rest of the ingredients and made eating it a bit messy and awkward. We also should have upped the mint and grapefruit to match our increases in the noodles and tofu. Still, the dish had a lot going for it - spiciness and tanginess in the dressing, crispy cucumber and bursts of flavour from the tofu and grapefruit. It makes plenty as well, and the leftovers served as excellent weekday lunches.
Rice noodles in grapefruit-sriracha vinaigrette
(adapted very slightly from Isa Chandra Moskowitz's PPK blog)
300g firm tofu, cubed
3 tablespoons tamari
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 teaspoon liquid smoke
1 clove garlic
3/4 cup red grapefruit juice
2 tablespoons sunflower oil
2 tablespoons sriracha
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon sesame seeds
1 teaspoon maple syrup
400g rice noodles (the recipe only calls for 250g, which would have worked better)
half a Lebanese cucumber, sliced thinly
1 red grapefruit, peeled and cut into segments
1/4 cup fresh mint, roughly chopped
Prepare the noodles as per their directions and then rinse them in cold water.
Combine the tofu marinade ingredients and stir the cubes through it. It doesn't need to soak it up much - five minutes will do.
Heat a pan with a teaspoon of oil. Tip the tofu and the marinade into the pan and cook over medium heat, stirring often until the dressing is cooked off and the tofu is browned (about 10 minutes).
Combine the dressing ingredients in a blender and whiz them together.
Toss together the noodles with the cooked tofu, cucumber pieces and grapefruit. Pour in the dressing and mix thoroughly to coat.
Sprinkle with mint and sesame seeds to serve.