Making Do

by Holly on November 29, 2011

in breakfast,dinner,gluten-free,rambling,recipes,vegan

Sometimes…you just gotta make do with what you got.

Because there’s going to come a time when your brain can’t comprehend all the exciting things gaining momentum around you. A time when your gay best friend has to make an acceptable substitute for an actual boyfriend. A time when there seems to be 1,709,231 things to do and yet still only 24 hours in a day to do them. A time for wearing your swimsuit bottoms to work when you’ve run out of clean underwear. And a time for channeling your inner MacGyver and concocting your own tofu press when you get the strange urge to cook tofu for dinner.

Today is that time, my friends.

The winds of change are blowing my curly-haired way.

My love life still isn’t to be envied.

I have a to-do list 29 things long (okay, okay…so 1,709,231 was an exaggeration).

I randomly grabbed swimsuit bottoms this morning even though I had clean underwear available.

And after enjoying a Curried Pumpkin Tofu Hash breakfast at Birchwood Cafe in Minneapolis this past weekend, I immediately knew I wanted to recreate it’s deliciousness. That means working with tofu…which means needing to press tofu…which means realizing I don’t have one of these handy dandy contraptions…which means The Healthy Everythingtarian had to make do yo.

Curried Pumpkin Tofu Hash with Brussel Sprouts
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 15 – 20 minutes

1 block firm tofu
2 T canola oil
1/2 medium yellow onion, finely diced
1/2 lb. (roughly 2 cups) brussel sprouts, halved
2 t minced garlic
1 t all-purpose seasoning*
generous pinch of salt
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
2 T maple syrup
2 t curry powder
1/4 t garam masala
3-4 T water
salt + pepper, to taste
pumpkin seeds, for garnish

*I highly recommend Trader Joe’s 21 Seasoning Salute or Penzey’s Mural of Flavor

Press your tofu press overnight or if you’re like me, cut tofu into 3 slabs approximately 1-inch thick and ratchet up your own tofu press (see above). Cut into small 1/2-inch cubes.

In a saucepan over medium-high heat, saute tofu, onion and brussel sprouts in oil. Stir occasionally, letting tofu and vegetables sear and brown on each side until tofu has a golden brown crust, and brussel sprouts are cooked through. Add garlic, seasoning and salt; stir and let cook for an additional 1-2 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix pumpkin, maple syrup, curry powder, garam masala, water and salt + pepper. Add more water to your desired thickness, but sauce is best slightly runny.

To serve place 1/4 of the tofu vegetable mixture on a plate and top with 2-3 T of the curried pumpkin mixture. Top with pumpkin seeds, and serve with multigrain toast.

Makes 4 servings

P.S. I really hate daylight savings time and the lack of natural light to photograph my dinner. Let’s make do without that.

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Thank you to everyone who has donated to this year’s blog fundraiser for Haiti Medical Mission of Wisconsin – we already have nearly $200! If you haven’t so yet, please check out this post and donate. Thankyou, thankyou, thankyou!


Lauren November 29, 2011 at 7:53 pm

Haha, love the make shift tofu press. And this recipe sounds delicious. So unique but something I would be so into.

Matt @ The Athlete's Plate November 29, 2011 at 7:55 pm


Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga November 29, 2011 at 7:56 pm

Oh that hash & tofu looks great. I have heard great things about Birchwood Cafe in Minneapolis. I wish it was there when I still lived there!

Lindsay @ Lindsay's List November 29, 2011 at 8:00 pm

Henry can draw better than you. ;) ;)

Julia H. @ The Petite Spiel November 29, 2011 at 9:13 pm

Mmm that sounds so good….I’m wary of tofu though! Not that there’s anything wrong with it…I just always associate it with the nasty plain squishy piece I had from my campus salad bar. But that’s probably not fair haha. Any tips for tofu newbies?

Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table November 29, 2011 at 11:28 pm

I made pumpkin tempeh a while back and I soooo wish I’d thought to add curry! Need to make the STAT.

P.S. My tofu “press” is a huge stack of cookbooks.

Nicola November 30, 2011 at 2:06 am

I’m impressed with the home made tofu press but I’m mightily impressed by the illustration. Its like modern art! ;-)

Amy B @ Second City Randomness November 30, 2011 at 7:21 am

“Today is that time”

I’m just going to go ahead and use that as my mantra to push me through the hump day, if you don’t mind… :)

Clair November 30, 2011 at 7:28 am

I have one of those handy dandy contraptions…highly recommended to anyone who eats a lot of tofu. It saves so much time, effort and space!

Also, your photos look great!

Madeline - Greens and Jeans November 30, 2011 at 7:50 am

This looks SO good. And I totally use weird things to press tofu. Once I even sat on top of a baking sheet to help speed the process along…

Mackenzie November 30, 2011 at 9:55 am

you know that girl that wears her bandeau swimsuit top as a strapless? and just buys new underwear on clearance at the gap and buys clothes at goodwill on the cheap so she doesnt have to do laundry? that girl is me. let’s start a club.

Elizabeth November 30, 2011 at 10:23 am

1. I adore the illustration of your “tofu press”
2. It’s made even better by the fact that you have 5lb weights in your apartment – as do I
3. Gay bestie = GREAT fill in boyfriend
4. I was really happy being single and have mixed views on marriage/relationships. Now I have a BF and it’s been a hard transition. Single life = good! Relationship life = good! They are just different “good”s <- I know I am grammatically incorrect and I don't care :) Enjoy single life!
5. I refuse to eat tofu (sorry to be negative Nancy for a sec) BUT your meal looks delicious and I'm going to make it with chicken :) woohoo

Megan (Braise the Roof) November 30, 2011 at 1:09 pm

YUM. That looks amazing. I hadn’t thought about incorporating brussels into a hash (which is surprising considering I put them in EVERYTHING. I think your photos look damn good even without the natural light, just so you know.

Emily November 30, 2011 at 2:42 pm

Yum, that looks awesome!

Hillary November 30, 2011 at 5:01 pm

I just squeeze my tofu in a paper towel and call it a day. Is that weird?

This dinner (and that slammin’ artwork!) are both enviable.

Kate November 30, 2011 at 10:10 pm

Gah! I needed to read this last night before I made 2 tofu dishes- Mama Pea’s tofu/mushroom lettuce cups and then a ginger miso stir-fry.
You are a creative genius!!!

PS I FINALLY blogged about my Liz Gilbert moment…check it out!

Cassandra @ She Don't Eat No Meat December 1, 2011 at 8:12 am

That first paragraph is the perfect summary of my life right now. So glad someone is in this boat with me. :)

Also, pumpkin + tofu = amazing.

Sarah@The Flying ONION December 1, 2011 at 11:01 am

This looks terrific!!!

And no natural lighting? Pshh…you don’t need it! Your pictures always look absolutely fantastic. :D

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