Broccoli and Tofu with Garlic Fried Rice

As you can tell from the title, today I cooked broccoli and tofu with garlic fried rice! The broccoli and tofu is cooked in the instant put and I use a rice maker for the rice so this meal is super quick to whip up. It’s funny because the actual instant pot “cooking time” is much less than the time required for it to reach the correct pressure level. This is worsened by the fact that it’s cooked in a 3-minute interval, followed by a 1-minute interval, so it needs to achieve that pressure level twice! Either way, this recipe is very easy and delicious, requiring minimal chopping and peeling, so I would highly recommend it!

P.S. I cheated on this one too because the tastiness of the fried rice comes entirely from the Nagatien Roast Garlic Fried Rice mix that I bought at Fujiya.

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  • Broccoli and Tofu
  • The original recipe can be found here.

    MARINATED TOFU

  • 14 oz pressed tofu
  • 3 tbsp reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tsp Sriracha or similar chili-garlic sauce
  • 1 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • 2 tsp rice vinegar
  • GINGER-CHILI SAUCE

  • 1/4 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp Water
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Sriracha or similar chili-garlic sauce
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1/2 inch piece fresh ginger grated or finely minced
  • FOR FINISHING

  • 1 1/2 tbsp grapeseed oil
  • 2 medium heads broccoli cut into small florets (about 4 cups)
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • Instructions
    1. Marinate the tofu: Drain the tofu and cut into 4 slabs . Use paper towels to press as much moisture out of the tofu as you can. Cut into small cubes.
    2. Place the tofu in a gallon-size zip-top bag and add the tamari, Sriracha, sesame oil, and vinegar. Toss to combine and let the tofu rest in the marinade for 5 minutes, massaging occasionally.
    3. Meanwhile, make the ginger-chili sauce: In a medium bowl, whisk together the tamari, agave nectar, water, the Sriracha, sesame oil, vinegar, and ginger until well combined.
    4. Finish the dish: Select the Sauté setting on the Instant Pot and let the pot heat up for a few minutes before adding the grapeseed oil. Once the display reads “HOT,” carefully transfer the marinated tofu to the pot. Cook the tofu for 1 1/2 minutes undisturbed. Use a spatula to flip and cook the tofu until it starts to brown on all sides, 3 to 4 minutes total. Add the ginger-chili sauce and stir to combine. Select the Cancel setting.
    5. Secure the lid and set the Pressure Release to Sealing. Select the Pressure Cook setting at high pressure and set the cook time to 3 minutes.
    6. Once the 3-minute timer has completed and beeps, perform a quick pressure release by carefully switching the Pressure Release knob from Sealing to Venting.
    7. Open the pot. Add the broccoli florets to the tofu and stir with the sauce to combine. Secure the lid and set the Pressure Release to Sealing. Select the Pressure Cook setting to low pressure and set the cook time to 1 minute . Once the 1-minute timer has completed and beeps, carefully perform another quick pressure release.
    8. In a small bowl, stir together the cornstarch with 1/4 cup water, whisking until combined without any lumps. Select the Sauté setting and press the Sauté button again until you reach less heat. Add the cornstarch slurry to the Instant Pot and gently stir to combine. Cook, stirring gently, until the sauce thickens, 2 to 3 minutes.

     

  • Garlic Fried Rice
  • 1 1/2 cups rice
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 packets Nagatien Roast Garlic Fried Rice mix
  • Instructions
    1. Day-old rice is perfect for this but you can also make it fresh at the time.
    2. Crack the eggs into a frying pan and lightly scramble them. Once they are mostly solid, add the rice and fry on medium-low for 30 seconds.
    3. Add the garlic mix and stir well until rice is evenly coated. Continue to fry until rice has achieved desired level of crunchiness.

     

    Ramen Eggs

    One thing that I love to make is ramen eggs. Obviously they are great in ramen, but I also just like to eat them with salad or on their own. So much tastier than a plain boiled egg and super easy to make too. Even before sheltering in place, I would make these on Sunday and we would have them for the whole week. These days, without soccer, my appetite has dropped a lot so for lunch I have usually just been having one of these eggs and some slices of soy mozzarella. Good enough to tide me over until dinner.

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  • Ramen Eggs
  • The original recipe can be found here.

  • 6 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup Mirin
  • 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup dark soy sauce
  • Instructions
    1. Fill a saucepan with some water. Make sure the pot is large enough for the eggs to sit at the bottom in one layer, and to have about 1 inch of water above the eggs.
    2. Bring the water to a boil over high heat with the lid on. Then lower the heat to medium or medium high, so that the water is still bubbling but not at a rolling boil (the eggs are more likely to crack at a rolling boil).
    3. Lower each egg gently into the water.
    4. Cook for 7 minutes for solid egg whites and a slightly runny yolk (other cook times can be found in the link to the original recipe).
    5. When the time is up, remove the eggs and immediately place them in a bowl with cold running water, for at least 2 – 3 minutes, OR place them in an ice bath for a few minutes.
    6. Place a paper towel over a hard surface to catch the egg shells. Carefully peel the eggs by gently tapping them on to create little cracks along the surface.
    7. Once peeled, place the eggs in the marinade. Let the eggs marinate for at least for 2 hours, or 8 – 12 hours for best results, or even up to 24 hours.
    8. Remove the eggs from the marinade and place them in a separate air-tight container.
    9. Keep the rest of the marinade in an air-tight container in the fridge. This can be re-used for up to 3 weeks.

     

    Szechuan Stir Fry and Chow Mein

    On Friday, I cooked Szechuan stir fry and chow mein. I didn’t use any specific recipes for it but I kind of cheated by using a premade Szechuan sauce. I had tried quite a few before this but found most of them to be underwhelming and not very flavourful. The first time I made this, I had actually gone to the grocery store intending to try making a Szechuan sauce from scratch but unfortunately the store I went to didn’t sell the peppercorns. They did happen to carry the San-J Szechuan Marinade so I figured i’d give it a shot and it turned out great! Dustin said that this is his favourite meal I have made so far.

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  • Szechuan Stir Fry
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1/2 jumbo carrot
  • 1 red bell pepper – chopped
  • 3 stalks celery – chopped
  • 1 small zucchini – chopped
  • 2 cups mushrooms – chopped
  • 340g pressed tofu
  • 5 cloves garlic – chopped
  • 3/4 cup San-J Szechuan Marinade
  • 1 tbsp Lee Kum Kee Black Bean Garlic Sauce (much cheaper at local grocery store)
  • Instructions
    1. Use paper towels to press any excess moisture out of tofu, then chop into small cubes.
    2. Add the oil to a large wok or skillet over medium-high heat. Swirl to coat the entire surface of the pan. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant. Add the carrots, peppers, celery, zucchini, mushrooms, and tofu.
    3. Add Szechuan and black bean garlic sauce and stir. Cover with lid and cook on medium-low heat while cooking chow mein.

     

  • Chow Mein
  • 1/2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cups chopped green cabbage
  • 1/2 pack tak fung chow mein noodles
  • 1 cup vegetarian hoisin sauce
  • 3/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp roasted sesame oil
  • Instructions
    1. Add the oil to a frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the cabbage and cook for 2-3 minutes.
    2. Add the noodles and 1 cup of water. Cook until noodles have soaked up most of the water, stirring occasionally.
    3. In a bowl, mix the hoisin sauce, soy sauce, and sesame oil.
    4. Pour mixture over noodles and mix until noodles are evenly coated. Fry on low setting for a couple more minutes. Add more hoisin or soy sauce according to taste.

     

    Garlic Bok Choy and Vegan Dirty Rice

    Whenever I have too much free time, one of two things happens. Either I become really lazy and lose the will to do anything, or I get really antsy and end up being really productive. When all this sheltering in place began, the laziness took over. I didn’t have motivation to do anything and I found it hard even to drag myself outside to walk Nimbus, despite how beautiful the weather has been. Eventually I decided that enough was enough and I didn’t want to spiral further into that cycle of inactivity so now I have been doing all sorts of things that I didn’t have the time to do before. I bought a year subscription to WaniKani and resumed studying Japanese. I’ve started going for runs 3 days a week and have been trying to draw everyday. I tried making a resin cast and i’ve been writing entries for this blog again. Best of all though, i’ve been learning how to cook. I’ve been picking random recipes and trying them out so I thought I would post the results here.

    Today was the first day I didn’t cook this week, which is crazy for someone who used to eat out or order in for 90% of meals. Yesterday, I made Garlic Bok Choy and Vegan Dirty Rice! I’d say they both turned out really well. Dustin and I are garlic fanatics so I doubled the amounts of garlic for each recipe and it was soooo tasty. The bok choy was super fast to make and just used sauces that we already had. I would definitely recommend these recipes!

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  • Garlic Bok Choy
  • The original recipe can be found here.

  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 5 cloves garlic – minced
  • 2 large shallots – minced
  • 2 pounds baby bok choy – halved or quartered
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp crushed red pepper – optional
  • Instructions
    1. Add the oil to a large wok or skillet over medium-high heat. Swirl to coat the entire surface of the pan. Add the garlic and shallots, stirring continuously for 1-2 minutes, or until fragrant.
    2. Add the bok choy, soy sauce, and sesame oil. Toss to coat and cover. Cook for 1-2 minutes, uncover and toss, and then cover and continue to cook until bok choy is cooked to desired doneness (approximately 3-5 minutes more).
    3. Sprinkle with crushed red pepper and serve immediately. Enjoy!

     

  • Vegan Dirty Rice
  • The original recipe can be found here. I modified it a little bit to suit our tastes better.

  • 1/4 cup water
  • 8 ounce mushrooms, minced
  • 1/2 cup minced bell pepper
  • 1 cup shredded carrot
  • 4 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 cup wild rice
  • 1 cup white rice
  • 1 1/2 tsp Cajun seasoning
  • 2 1/2 cups Vegetable Broth
  • salt, to taste, optional
  • Instructions
    1. Add the water to your Instant Pot and turn on the saute function. Add in the mushrooms, bell pepper, shredded carrots, garlic and cook until soft.
    2. Add in the rice and Cajun seasoning and saute for a minute or two until the spices become fragrant. Press cancel on the instant pot.
    3. Add in the broth, put the lid on and turn vent to sealing. Pressure Cook for 23 minutes then let sit for 10 minutes. Then you can manually release the rest of the pressure.
    4. Fluff the rice and salt to taste.