Dana Treat – Treat Yourself

Vietnamese Tofu Sandwich

Posted July 9, 2009

Tai’s Vietnamese Tofu Sandwich
Adapted from Everyday Greens
Makes 4 sandwiches

Carrot-Daikon Radish Pickles (recipe follows)
1 package extra firm tofu, 12-16 ounces
Vegetable oil for frying (DT: I used peanut oil)
Salt and pepper
2 shallots, thinly sliced
1/2 tbsp. minced garlic
1/2 tbsp. minced fresh ginger
2 cups flavorful chopped canned tomatoes, with their juice
2 tbsp. Tamari or other soy sauce
1/2 tsp. sugar
Pinch of cayenne pepper
4 soft French rolls (DT: I used small ciabatta)
12 to 16 cilantro sprigs

Make the Carrot-Daikon Radish pickles.

Cut the tofu into 1/2-inch-thick slices, cut each slice into quarters, and each quarter into two triangles.  Pour enough oil into a large non-stick skillet to thoroughly coat the bottom and heat just until below the point of smoking, when the first wisp of vapor appears.  Fry the tofu until golden and crisp, about 3 minutes per side.  Drain the tofu on paper towels, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and set aside.

Heat 1 tbsp. of the tofu frying oil in a skillet, add the shallots, 1/4 tsp. salt, and a pinch of pepper, and cook over medium heat for 2 minutes.  Sir in the garlic and ginger, adding a little water if needed to keep everything from  sticking to the apn.  Add the tomatoes, tamari, sugar, and the cayenne and cook until the tomatoes thicken, about 15 minutes.  Add the tofu and simmer for about 5 minutes.

Cut the rolls in half and scoop out the centers.  Spoon the filling into the bottom halves of the rolls, making sure to include all of the sauce.  Scatter 1/4 cup of the pickles and a few sprigs of cilantro over the filling.  Place the top on each sandwich, press it down to hole the filling in place, and slice in half on the diagonal.

Carrot-Daikon Radish Pickles
Makes 1 quart

2 large carrots, thinly sliced
1/2 large daikon radish, peeled, quartered, and thinly sliced
1/2 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
1 jalapeno chili, seeded, and finely chopped
1/2 cup rice vinegar
1/4 cup water
2 tbsp. sugar
1/4 tsp. salt

Place the carrots, daikon, onions, and chili in a bowl.  Combine the remaining ingredients in a small saucepan, bring to a boil, and pour over the carrot mixture.  Set aside for at least an hour to pickle, or transfer to an airtight container, and refrigerate.

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