Walnut Crusted Tofu and Spicy Kale Salad

  • #ingredient#
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021912 - Korean BBQ-1

1 – Jang Su Jang Korean BBQ – a table of food we destroyed on Sunday night. 2 – Acorn Noodles in Spicy Sauce. 3 – Seaweed Salad. 4 – Mushroom Tofu Soup (Extra Spicy). 5 – Hummus and Toast Circles. 6 – Olive Tapenade. 7 – Scotch Tasting + Food Pairings. 8 – Walnut Crusted Tofu with Sriracha Aioli on Spicy Kale Salad

Photos 1 through 4 are from my first experience at Korean BBQ – a wonderfully, delicious experience. A surprisingly veg-friendly restaurant in Duluth, the Acorn Noodles were a sweet complement to the spicy kick of the Mushroom Tofu Soup. The soup is usually not vegan-friendly, but they switched out the broth for water, which was surprisingly flavorful with all the Korean spices they added to the mix. I need to learn to make this at home!

Photos 5-7 are from our scotch tasting this weekend, where we paired scotch from the different regions with appetizers that complement their flavor profiles. Food pairings included basic hummus, Truffled Friendly Cashew Cheese, Olive Tapenade, and Kristina’s Salted Caramel Browne Fudge.

And finally, the last of the Walnut Crusted Tofu with Sriracha Aioli on Spicy Kale Salad. It didn’t last long, but I was glad I made a little extra last week to enjoy. Speaking of which…I think it’s time to share the recipe for this tasty meal!

Walnut Crusted Tofu with Sriracha Aioli
Recipe type: Entree
Cuisine: Vegan, Vegetarian
Serves: 4
  • +For the Tofu
  • 1 block extra firm tofu
  • ½ cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons Bragg's Aminos
  • 3 tablespoons Sriracha, divided
  • 2 tablespoons liquid smoke
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup walnuts
  • cooking spray
  • +For the Aioli
  • 1 tablespoon non-dairy mayo (veganaise)
  • 2 tablespoon Sriracha
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • pinch of dill
  1. For the Tofu
  2. Press the block of tofu for at least one hour (the longer the better, I pressed mine for 3 hours). If you don't have a tofu press, cut the block of tofu in half lengthwise and sandwich between two paper-towel lined cutting boards. Stack heavy objects (cookbooks, cans of soup, whatever) on top of cutting boards.
  3. After pressing, cut tofu into squares - I divided my block into sections of 6 (lengthwise) and then sections of 4 (crosswise).
  4. Combine next 6 ingredients (nutritional yeast through apple cider vinegar) together in a small bowl to make the marinade.
  5. In a resealable container (like Tupperware), combine the tofu squares and marinade. Cover & shake well, until all surfaces appear coated. Place in refrigerator to marinade for at least 1 hour (the longer the better again, I marinated mine for 2 hours).
  6. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  7. After marinating is complete, pulse walnuts in a food processor (or blender) until they resemble a course meal. Add half the walnuts to the marinated tofu in the container and shake well to coat the tofu with the walnuts. Add remaining walnuts to container and shake well to coat. **Note: I added the walnuts half at a time, because of the amount of reserved marinade left on the tofu. I found that the tofu coats better when the walnut is added a little at a time.
  8. IMG_7905
  9. Transfer the coated tofu to a cookie sheet coated in cooking spray. Press any excess walnut coating to the cover the tops of any tofu blocks that aren't thoroughly covered. Bake in oven for 20 minutes, or until golden brown.
  10. Serve over a bed of greens or marinated kale salad (see my spicy kale salad for a nice pairing).
  11. For the Aioli**Note: This does not need a sauce, but this spicy Sriracha Aioli puts it over the top if you love spicy foods (like me).
  12. Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and drizzle over tofu.

Spicy Kale Salad
Recipe type: salad
Cuisine: vegan, vegetarian
Serves: 2-4
  • 3-4 cups kale leaves, torn into bite size pieces
  • ⅓ cup nutritional yeast
  • 2 teaspoons hemp oil
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons Bragg's Aminos
  • ½ teaspoon liquid smoke
  • 1 tablespoon sriricha
  1. Tear kale leaves into bite size pieces, removing the ribs if desired, and place in medium bowl.
  2. Combine remaining ingredients into small bowl to create marinade.
  3. Pour marinade over kale leaves and massage into the leaves for 3-5 minutes with your hands. The leaves should be fully coated and you'll feel the texture of the leaves begin to soften.


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    • says

      I just always have to remember that not everything needs things over-the-top spicy like me. :) I want to make those encrusted mushrooms you had at dinner the other night – you need to recreate those next!

    • says

      I’ve been putting sriracha on everything recently – do you ever get into moods with food like that? And that’s a pretty darn good description of the tofu, crunchy outside/soft inside. I could use some more right now! :)

    • says

      Thanks Mattie! When you make this, remember to let it press & marinate for as long as you can spare – it really improves the texture and amps up the flavor. Let me know your thoughts if you try it! =)

    • says

      I’d love to hear your thoughts if you try them! And thanks for the recommendation on the Korean restaurant, I’ll write that one down for after the race – it sounds perfect!!

    • says

      I hadn’t either. The discussion at the table is that it might actually be made from hazelnuts, just a different name, but either way it was different and delicious. Thanks for the pin!!

  1. says

    Mm, I can imagine the crunchy texture and nutty, toasted flavor of the tofu right now! I’ve been wanting to make pistachio-crusted tofu for the longest time, but completely forgot about it. This is a really enticing reminder… And a perfect starting point! Switching the nuts will be no sweat. :)
    Hannah recently posted…Alone in the KitchenMy Profile

  2. says

    Very cool, the combination of marinating the tofu, crusting it with walnuts, and drizzling on the sauce would be amazing. I’m working on making more interesting variations of tofu, marinated, crusted, and so forth, as opposed to my default mode of cubing it up and throwing it in the stir-fry.

    • says

      Tofu is so versatile, you just have to start getting comfortable with the properties. Grilling, baking, slicing and frying — really a million possibilities!


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