YIELD: 6 servings
4 cups water
1/2 ounce dried porcini or shiitake mushrooms
2 cups quinoa
1 1/2 teaspoons natural sea salt, divided
2 14-ounce packages firm water-packed tofu
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons sherry or other wine vinegar (preservative free)
3 cloves organic garlic, finely minced
2 teaspoons finely chopped rosemary, thyme or oregano, or a mix of herbs
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon red chili flakes
12 ounces organic asparagus spears, trimmed and cut into 2-inch lengths
1 cup organic corn kernels
4 to 6 organic spring carrots, peeled and sliced 1⁄2 inch thick (1 cup sliced)
1 cup organic frozen edamame or peas, thawed
2 tablespoons thinly sliced organic green onions or chives
1. Place the water in a medium pot with the mushrooms. Bring to a simmer and cook, covered, for 10 minutes. Strain the broth through a coffee filter into a 4-cup measuring cup to remove grit, and set aside the mushrooms for later.
2. Add more water if needed to bring the liquid to 4 cups. Return the liquid to a clean medium pot with the quinoa and 1 teaspoons of the salt and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook,covered, until the grains are cooked through but still a bit chewy, about 20 minutes. Cook over low heat, stirring often, until any excess liquid evaporates, about 5 minutes. Cover and keep warm.
3. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400°F and lightly grease 2 rimmed baking sheets with olive oil. Remove the tofu from its packaging and drain on paper towels while you prepare the marinade.
4. In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, vinegar, garlic, herbs, salt and red chili flakes.
5. Slice the tofu lengthwise into 1-inch slabs, then cut each slab in half to make squares. Place the tofu in a shallow pan and cover with the marinade. Marinate for at least 30 minutes or refrigerate for several hours to overnight, flipping halfway through.
6. Remove the tofu from the marinade and place on a prepared baking sheet. Toss the asparagus and carrots in the leftover marinade to coat, then arrange on the other baking sheet. Repeat with the corn, keeping it separate. Cook for 10 minutes, then remove the corn from the pan. Stir the asparagus and the carrots, and flip the tofu. Continue cooking until the vegetables are cooked through and the tofu is slightly browned, about 10 minutes.
7. Chop the reserved mushrooms and stir them into the quinoa with the corn, asparagus, carrots, edamame and green onions. Stir in a drizzle of the marinade from the pan, if you like, and serve the pilaf topped with the tofu squares.
Tip: This recipe works well with other grains too! Just substitute the quinoa with an equal amount of barley, bulgur, wheat berries, brown rice or your favourite grain.