Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Pesto-scrambled tofu with cherry tomatoes

December 12, 2015

Cindy's birthday festival wasn't over after our fancy Brae dinner - we had speedy dumplings at Shanghai Street on Friday night and then I got cracking on a Saturday morning breakfast. I returned to Vegan Brunch, opting for our go-to potato-based side dish, muffin-tray hash browns combined with something new: pesto-tofu scramble with cherry tomatoes.

I'm sure you could take the easy option and buy some pesto, but Isa's recipe is super simple and adds just the right amount of oily basil goodness to the scram. Even a tomato-hater like me found the cooked-down cherry tomatoes added nice bursts of colour and flavour. We had a long debate on Facebook recently where most commenters agreed that there was no cafe-cooked scrambled tofu that measured up to what you can make at home and I think, despite how much I enjoyed Green Park's offering, this dish proves them right - nobody's selling scrambled tofu this good, so stay home one Sunday morning and whip this up. You won't be disappointed.

Pesto scrambled tofu with cherry tomatoes
(based on a recipe from Isa Chandra's Vegan Brunch)

1 garlic clove, peeled
1/3 cup pine nuts, lightly toasted
1 bunch basil leaves (~ 2 loosely packed cups)
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small brown onion, thinly sliced
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
2 garlic cloves, minced
500g firm tofu, moisture squeezed out as best you can
salt and pepper

Whiz up the pine nuts, garlic, basil and salt in a food processor until everything is chopped finely.

With the food processor running, slowly pour in the oil, water and vinegar. Keep blending until you've got a nice smooth pesto.

Gently heat the remaining oil in a large frying pan up and slow-fry the onion for 5-10 minutes until it's nice and soft.

Add the tomatoes and cook for another 5 minutes, until they get all crinkly and start giving up their juices. Stir in the garlic and cook for another 30 seconds.

Crumble the tofu right into the pan in chunky pieces. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring regularly. 

Stir in the pesto, season with salt and pepper and cook for another couple of minutes.

Serve, ideally with hash browns you've had baking the whole time.


  1. Sounds good to me - I would love to eat out at places with tofu scramble more but guess we haven't been doing brunches so much this year generally - I am in admiration of the work you put into brunches at home too! Sounds perfect for a birthday brunch and I am sure a leisurely brunch at home was appreciated

    1. It was very much appreciated! We are rarely prepared with the right ingredients at home in the morning, but it's wonderful when everything comes together. :-)