Okay, I know I’ve been posting a huge number of tropical, coconutty recipes lately (like this and that). But I love these tropical recipes and they make my heart so happy. I hate the relentless summer heat, but I sure do love seasonal summer food.
This Caribbean Pineapple Tofu features pan-fried tofu with a sweet and spicy pineapple glaze on a bed of rice and pigeon peas. I love how the rice and pigeons peas cook with a diced jalapeno in coconut milk – I think it adds a great layer of flavor and I would be super happy to eat it by itself without the tofu. In interest of full disclosure, this meal did not win the approval of my brother-in-law – he had never tried tofu before and this did not win him over. It totally surprised me since the tofu is pan fried and has a sweet pineapple glaze, so it’s not the stereotypical bland stuff most tofu haters think of. So I think you will like this dish if you like tofu. If you wanted to toss in a can of black beans in the pot with the rice instead of pigeon peas, I think that would work wonderfully.
- • 28 ounces tofu, cut into ¾" cubes
- • 1 onion, chopped
- • 1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
- • ¼ cup vegetable oil
- • 1½ cups brown rice
- • 1 15-ounce can pigeon peas, drained
- • 1 13.5-ounce can coconut milk
- • 1 cup plus 3 tablespoons water
- • ½ cup pineapple preserves
- • juice of ½ lime
- • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- Spread tofu over a paper towel-lined cutting board or baking sheet, let drain for 20 minutes, then gently press dry with a paper towel. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Meanwhile, cook the onion, jalapeno, and 2 tablespoons vegetable oil in a large saucepan over medium heat until the vegetables are softened, about 3 minutes. Stir in rice and cook until opaque, about one minute. Stir in peas, coconut milk, 1 cup water, and 1 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and cook, covered, until rice is tender, about 20 minutes. Add a little more water if the rice does not appear to be done and the bottom of the saucepan is dry.
- Microwave pineapple preserves in a bowl until bubbling, about 1 minute. Make sure to microwave them in short 20-second bursts so the preserves do not explode (just talking from personal experience here). Whisk in the 3 remaining tablespoons of water, lime juice, and red pepper flakes.
- Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium high heat. When the oil is hot, add half the tofu and cook until golden on all sides, about 5 minutes. Transfer the tofu to a paper towel-lined plate. Repeat with the remaining tofu using the oil left in the pan, then return all tofu to the skillet. Add pineapple mixture and simmer, turning the tofu to coat, until the glaze thickens, about 1 minute. Serve with pigeon pea rice.
Adapted from The Complete Vegetarian Cookbook