When my mother told me that there were a few blackberries left in the fridge the other day, I was trying to think of something interesting to do with them. We were already planning on having tofu stir fry, but I’m always trying to come up with different ways to prepare tofu so that it tastes delicious, and I think I found the solution with this stir fry.
I started by taking out all of the asian sauces in our fridge: soy, teriyaki, oyster, hoisin, black bean, and I broke up a blackberry on a dish, and tried a dab of each sauce with a tiny bite of blackberry to test the flavor combinations to see what works best. Soy was too salty, and oyster would have gone nicely in moderation, but I wanted to try and keep this vegan (for fun). Hoisin was too sweet, and black bean was too garlicky, and I was already going to add garlic to my vegetables. I ended up using teriyaki, the perfect combination of sweet and salty to go with my sweet blackberries, and more readily available than most of those other sauces.
Blackberry Tofu Stir Fry
1 Package of Extra Firm, or Firm Tofu
Small Handful of Blackberries
About 1 Tablespoon Teriyaki Sauce (but don’t overdo it!)
Canola Oil
3/4 of a Head of Broccoli, or 3/4 of a Bag of Pre-Cut Broccoli, cut into florets
2 Pieces of Zucchini Cut into thirds, then quartered lengthwise
10 Baby Carrots, or 1 Large Carrot, halved or quartered lengthwise
1 Red Bell Pepper, cut into strips, then halved
2 Cloves of Garlic, minced
3/4 can of Bamboo Shoots (optional)
Start by steaming the broccoli a little bit so it cooks at the same rate as the rest of the vegetables, I usually do this by putting the broccoli in a microwave-safe dish, and drizzling a little water over it, and the microwaving it for a couple of minutes. If you do this, make sure you drain the water from the broccoli before adding it to the rest of the vegetables.
Pour some canola oil (or vegetable/mushroom/chicken/beef broth if you prefer) into a wok (or frying pan) and let heat, then add the garlic. Soon after, add the carrots, bell peppers, zucchini, bamboo shoots, and broccoli. My broccoli ended up a bit overcooked, and so it was broken up into little broccoli bits, which added nice color, but not the exact texture I was looking for. Cover the vegetables with whatever kind of cover you have, and turn the heat to low while you steam them briefly.
Use the steaming time to dice the tofu (or cut in strips if you prefer) and separate the blackberries. Now blackberries grow around this kind of seed/pit thing, that is perfectly fine to eat, but when you cook them, all of the “black” falls off, and these weird green things are left in the pan. What I did was I just pulled the little black “seeds” off of the bigger green seed, and put them aside until I was ready to use them.
Once the vegetables have steamed, feel free to toss them around a bit, and then take them out of the wok (or frying pan) and put them aside. Do not add any oil to the pan. Put the tofu in the pan on medium-low heat, and as the pieces cook, add the blackberries. Toss the tofu with the blackberries until the pieces are all dyed purple/pink. Then add the teriyaki, however little or much you want really, but you’re going to want the flavor to transfer to the vegetables, so a little more than just for the tofu. Once you’ve mixed the tofu with the teriyaki and the blackberries, and the tofu has cooked a bit, add the vegetables back in and mix well.
After that, you’re ready to serve. I cooked up a package of yaki-soba noodles, they aren’t easy to find, but they’re my favorite even though they are really bad for me. You could also serve this with rice, or any other noodles you like. It can also be a stand alone dish without a starch, but I like to balance out my meals.
Photos to come soon!
Love and Happy Spatulas,