Tofu Curry

July 23, 2012 9:22:16 AM PDT
("Vegan Indian Cooking", by Anupy Singla) This dish was one of my biggest surprises. The soy yogurt mixed perfectly with the spices and provided the much-needed moisture and texture that normal 'dairy' yogurt does for traditional Indian curries.

The tofu was an especially delicious addition, especially if baked first. You can also use unbaked tofu, but this will naturally have a softer texture, which I liked but did not make the cut with my more discerning husband. Make it both ways and decide for yourself.

Yield: 2 cups

  • 1 small yellow or red onion, peeled and chopped into 4 pieces
  • 1 2-inch piece ginger, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, peeled and trimmed
  • 1 medium tomato, quartered
  • 2 - 3 green Thai, serrano, or cayenne chile peppers, stems removed (chopped in half)
  • 1/2 cup plain, unsweetened soy yogurt
  • 1 heaping teaspoon coarse sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon dried fenugreek leaves (kasoori methi), lightly crushed in your hand to release flavor
  • 1 teaspoon red chile powder or cayenne
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon asafoetida (hing)
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 2-inch cinnamon stick
  • 2 green cardamom pods (lightly crushed)
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 14 oz. extra firm, organic tofu, baked and cubed (see recipe below)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, minced

1. In a food processor, grind the onion, ginger, garlic, tomato, and chiles until you have a smooth, slightly watery paste. Transfer to a bowl.

2. Add yogurt, salt, garam masala, fenugreek leaves, and red chile. Mix well.

3. In a deep, heavy pan, heat oil over medium-high heat.

4. Add asafoetida, cumin, turmeric, cinnamon, cardamom, and cloves. Heat for 30 seconds until the seeds sizzle.

5. Add soy yogurt mixture and water. Bring to a boil and then turn heat down and simmer for 3 - 5 minutes until the mixture slightly thickens. This step is key. The spices need to cook and blend evenly into the other ingredients.

6. Add tofu. Simmer for another 4 - 5 minutes. Remove whole spices, garnish with fresh cilantro, and serve immediately over a bed of brown or white basmati rice.