Before J and I started cooking regularly (but after we stopped eating most of our lunches and dinners out at restaurants), I used to buy a fair amount of food from the Whole Foods salad bar and deli case. It was a super easy way to get fresh, veggie-filled meals for us. One of my regular purchases was their curry tofu salad. While we were grocery shopping this week, an idea that I’d had eons ago resurfaced, and we decided to try to make this dish ourselves from scratch. The employees behind the counter weren’t sure if this was one of the Whole Foods recipes available online, so to be safe I took a picture of the ingredient list.
I was glad that I’d snapped the picture, since the best J could find was this recipe from another blogger. Since it didn’t quite seem to match the Whole Foods ingredients, we made our own best guesses at proportions and merged the two. Our taste test suggests that we did pretty well; this dish is also the sort that should be even tastier once the flavors get a chance to blend, so I expect it to be even better tomorrow. (UPDATE: I was right!) I didn’t do a careful cost analysis, but I’m guessing that we saved at least 50% by making this ourselves, not to mention the fact that virtually all of the ingredients in our version were organic (none are in the Whole Foods version). It was also super easy; it’s mostly just chopping vegetables, since the tofu is the only thing we actually cooked. We will definitely be making this again!
Here’s a quick rundown of our version of the recipe. Some measurements are a bit inexact since we were winging it. We also increased the amounts below by 50%, but that’s because we are big eaters and were preparing a big batch for lunch this week.
- 2 packages tofu, extra firm, diced
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped
- 1 bunch green onions (substitute one small onion if necessary)
- 1 carrot, peeled and shredded
- chopped cilantro in whatever amount you like and have available
- ½ cup raisins
- about 2 oz slivered almonds
- 1 small “toe” of fresh ginger, minced
- 1 garlic clove, minced or pressed
- ½ cup vegan mayonnaise
- juice of ½ large lemon
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 4 tsp curry powder
- 1 tsp sugar
- a dash of Cayenne
- a dash of white pepper
- several cranks of fresh ground black pepper
- In a large saucepan over med to med-high heat, sauté tofu (in a bit of olive oil, if you’d like) until browned and firmed. Pour off excess liquid as needed (or if you prefer, do that squeeze-the-tofu-brick-between-two-plates-with-something-heavy-on-top trick before dicing and cooking). Set aside to cool.
- In a separate bowl, blend the dressing ingredients. Taste, and adjust seasonings to your liking.
- Add the tofu and the rest of the ingredients.