Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Tofu Etouffee Over Corn Cakes

I have been checking out cookbooks from the library so I can explore various cuisines and flavours for free. I have been having good luck with the Williams-Sonoma cookbooks--nice pictures, solid recipes, and some cultural history to boot. This recipe is inspired by the New Orleans collection. I thought the corn cakes would be a little ponderous, but they are actually a wonderful addition that complete this flavourful dish.

Tofu Etouffee
- 1 pkg tofu, cut into small cubes
- oil
- 1 tsp ground thyme
- 1 tsp red pepper flakes

- 1 tbsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp sage
- 1 tsp smoked sea salt (or regular)
- freshly ground pepper
- 1/3 cup oil
- 1/3 cup flour
- 2 onions, diced
- 2 celery stalks, diced
- 1 red pepper, seeded and diced
- 1 green pepper, seeded and diced
- 2 large garlic cloves, minced
- 4-5 cups veggie stock, or water
- 2 generous tbsp tomato paste
- 1 tbsp fresh thyme
- 1 tbsp fresh oregano
- 2 bay leaves
- salt and pepper to taste

Corn Cakes
- 1 1/4 cups cornmeal
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour
- 2 tbsp cornstarch
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 2 cups soy milk (less 2 tbsp)
- 3 tbsp oil
- 4 green onions, finely chopped

1. Fry in tofu cubes in a thin layer of oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat until crispy and golden brown. Transfer to a bowl and toss with thyme, pepper flakes, paprika, sage, salt and pepper. Set aside.
2. Heat a large pot over medium-high heat. Add oil, then whisk in flour to make a roux. Continually whisk for 4-5 mins, or until flour is a deep golden brown. If you burn it, you have to start again. Reduce heat to medium and add onion, celery, and peppers. Cook, stirring constantly, until veggies are tender (about 8 mins). Add a splash of water or two to the pan to deglaze if the flour sticks too much.
3. Add garlic and cook for 2 mins, then slowly add in stock, stirring well to incorporate. Stir in tomato paste and herbs. Add tofu, bring to bubbling, then reduce heat and simmer for at least 30 mins, allowing the sauce to reduce and thicken. Add more water if it is too thick after reducing, or more tomato paste if too thin. Season to taste before serving.

While the etouffee is simmering, make the corn cakes

1. Whisk together dry ingredients in a large bowl.
2. Pour apple cider vinegar into a 4 cup measure, then fill up to the two cup line with soy milk. Whisk together, then whisk in oil. Add to dry ingredients and gently mix until just incorporated. Fold in green onions.
3. Cook, as you would pancakes, on a oiled griddle, using about 1/4 cup of batter per pancake.

To serve, place two pancakes on a plate and cover with etouffee. The pancakes re-heat nicely on a griddle the next day (can be stored in the fridge, or you can just make a 1/2 recipe), and the etoufee tastes even better as leftovers.


Serenity Love Sincere Peace Earth said...

I have all this stuff on hand and some tofu draining. Thanks for dinner!

Debra said...

As always a great looking recipe!
Blessings, Debra
Raw Vegan Diet

cookmarked said...

oh wow - sounds great! so curious to try this. i'm from new orleans and have been fantasizing about a vegan etoufee. saving it (!

Stephanie Brown said...

Glad you kept the corn cakes. Aren't they special? Stuff like this goes great over grit cakes, too. You make grits one day and the next day when they congeal in the storage container in the fridge, just cut them into blocks and pan fry... Yum. Southern goodness.

Shae Healey said...

I just discovered your site, and I'm absolutely thrilled about it. I recently adopted a vegetarian diet, and my dad (a Nebraskan, born and raised) can't stop giving me flack. He might actually listen to a fellow dad...I'll keep you posted!

Mandy said...

Helo Vegan Dad! I can always count on you for colorful,tasty and interesting recipes. I enjoy your blog and look forward to reading it each time. Thank you for keeping us well fed and satisfied with all these wonderful recipes!

sayhay said...

Hey Vegan Dad,

Thanks for the recipe! I made it for dinner tonight but unfortunately I found the etouffee to be lacking flavor. I did use water instead of stock, but it feels like the problem goes a little deeper than that. I was wondering what you thought of the dish and if you have any suggestion to add some flavor to it.



A Vegan Goddess said...

Oh man...this looks and sounds wonderful!

Marcia said...

I've gotten 2-3 cookbooks from there as gifts, and they do have good solid recipes.

Alice Leonard said...

Hi, this looks delicious! I was about to make the corn cakes, and then I realised I don't know whether you mean coarse or fine cornmeal. which did you use? Thanks, Alice

Karen Anne said...

How many servings? Thanks.

TiffanyDow said...

Hi Vegan Dad! I recently turned vegetarian (4 months ago) and started my own blog about being a Lousy Vegetarian because of the struggles I have with it - I haven't eaten meat but I go through grieving periods over meat. Anyway, lots of my own blog readers keep telling me to come learn from you, so here I am! And I must say your recipes look delicious! I'll be following along. Thanks!
Tiff ;)

Julia said...

Thanks for the tasty recipes!!

I just started a very amateur vegan blog if anyone wants to network

Kate said...

How many servings does this make? How many corncakes would half the recipe be?

Thanks! Looks awesome!

breannadrew said...

I may have to try this tonight - I was just thinking yesterday that I wish I had a good etouffee recipe and it has been way too long since I've had etouffee... very serendipitous that this should show up today. Guess I need to run by the grocery on the way home for an additional redpepper now. Thanks for sharing.

Matthew (Vegan Heartland) said...

That looks yummy! I like Williams-Sonoma cookbooks too! I was flipping through my Aunt's the other day and saw some great recipes!!

Allison said...

I made this tonight and it was absolutely delicious! I skipped the corn cakes and served it over brown rice (though I bet grits/polenta would be fantastic too). I liked having the rice to soak up the yummy gravy. Thanks so much for a great recipe!

Alice Leonard said...

Hi, I just tried making the corn cakes but the mix was very liquid, and they stuck to the pan like crazy! I didn't know what sort of cornmeal you meant, so I used half coarse and half fine. Any hints for me?

Kate said...

I've been reading your blog for a while, but haven't commented until now. LOVE it. In any case, I made this tonight and my fiancé and I both loved it. I do, however, have a question about the corn cakes. They completely fell apart on the pan for me. I'm not vegan, just lacto-ovo, so I threw in an egg, but I'm curious about if you used any particular technique that kept yours together better than mine. I definitely wasn't thrilled to use the egg, but the rest of the dish was pretty much done, so I kind of panicked. Thanks for all the terrific blogging!

Vegan Dad said...

To all re: the corn cakes. Hmmmm. I took notes as I cooked, but perhaps I left something out. I found that upping the all purpose flour meant I did not need an egg. I will have to revisit this one and post an update. For the time being, decrease the corn meal to 1 cup, and add more flour if needed.

As for the cornmeal, I just used regular grind (not corn flour or polenta).

Violet Gray said...

This looks delish! I have all the ingredients and it is a cool damp day in Toronto...need some southern soul. Thank you!

ساحر حضرموت said...

thanks very much i am looking for something like this ask you to transfer this to my website.

Julie said...

I am so excited to try this recipe. I'm from New Orleans and now live in Boston and I miss the food so much! I'm working on a faux "shrimp" po boy recipe, no luck yet but I'm not stopping until I get it!

Basil said...

I made this, with the corn cakes... although they took a while, they turned out alright with me. Actually, I can't wait to make this dish again! It was delicious, and made a lot too.

Lisa said...

I just made this and it was amazing! I love the corn cakes - I pre-emptively replaced 1/4 C of cornmeal with an additional 1/4 C APF. The etouffee was soooo good - better than could have imagined!

OnNutrition said...

I made this for my family for dinner last night. It was tremendously delicious!! I think I would serve the seasoned tofu as an appetizer, I couldn't stop snacking on it. Thanks for a great recipe! By the way, after reading the comments about the corn cakes, I used 1 1/2 cups corn meal and 1 cup AP flour for the corn cakes. They were perfect!

Ellen Lederman said...

Excellent! Even my carnivore neighbor from New Orleans loved it!

Thanks so much for such a quality blog/recipes---really appreciate it.