Friday, March 25, 2011


Amidst numerous 1/2 started posts and ideas in my head that I've yet to put on paper, I finally found it. The perfect vegan recipe. It was all thanks to a work friend, a girl who often shares various food ideas, as well as beauty secrets over our lunch hour, who pointed me in the direction of this fabulous recipe that I've already planned multiple variations of.

Can I tell you how easy it was? I was already making some of Francis Lam's Let-My-Eggplant-Go-Free (with a twist- added currants and some red wine) Spaghetti for dinner and as I was going away for the weekend and trying to clean out the fridge I roasted up some leftover cauliflower and sunchokes with crushed garlic. Then simply cut up the extra firm tofu-key for this recipe- sprinkled some olive oil, oregano and salt over and baked for approximately 20 minutes. Together with some homemade whole wheat focaccia- just my normal focaccia recipe with the flour divided to 1/2 all purpose and 1/2 whole wheat- it was the perfect work day lunch, but over some polenta and perhaps slightly larger tofu slices it would be the best dinner.
And the baked herbed tofu was almost so convincingly reminiscent of mozzarella I could've easily closed my eyes and thought I was eating a melting yet firm slice of the cheese. So much so that I've already devised how I could make a tomato and "mozzarella" stacked salad, tuna melt, or even an eggplant parmigiana. The possibilities are nearly endless and I'm over the moon that I've found a cheese substitute that isn't actually a cheese substitute.

Vegetable and Tofu Napoleon- the original recipe from Weight Watchers
1 large red onion(s)
1 medium raw eggplant, peeled
1 medium zucchini
1 medium yellow pepper(s)
1 medium sweet red pepper(s)
1 pound(s) extra firm tofu
1 Tbl rosemary, fresh, chopped
3 Tbl parsley, fresh, chopped
3 clove(s) (medium) garlic clove(s)
1 Tbl olive oil, extra virgin
2 Tbl fresh lemon juice, about the juice from one lemon

1.  Preheat oven to 425°F. Coat 2 baking sheets with cooking spray.

2. Place onions on one half of a baking sheet and peppers on other half. Place eggplant and zucchini separately on second baking sheet. Coat tops of vegetables with cooking spray. Roast 15 minutes and then rotate baking sheets; roast 15 minutes more. Turn off oven and leave vegetables in oven to keep warm.

3. Place rosemary, parsley and garlic in bowl of food processor. Add oil and lemon juice and blend until smooth, about 3 to 4 minutes; set aside.

 4. Spread herb mixture onto both sides of each tofu slice. Coat a large nonstick skillet with cooking spray and heat over medium heat. Place tofu in heated pan and brown both sides of tofu, about 2 to 4 minutes per side- I preferred baking my tofu

5. To serve, place one slice of tofu on a plate. On top of tofu, stack one slice of eggplant, one slice of red pepper and one wedge of red onion; top with another slice of tofu and then top that with one slice each of yellow pepper and zucchini, and another piece of red onion. Drizzle with remaining herb mixture. Repeat with remaining ingredients. Yields one napoleon per serving.

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