Recipe: Tofu Scampi

28 Dec

My first vegan Christmas. My family is Italian American so we do the whole fish extravaganza on Christmas Eve, and I only recently started partaking in it. As a child I was very picky and didn’t eat a bit of fish. My tradition was to get a Whopper from Burger King. Yuck. My mother makes amazing Shrimp Scampi, and creamy scallop bake every year. I wanted something similar, and figured the scampi would be a lot easier to emulate.

I found a recipe for tofu scampi from The Vegan Foodie, and sat with my mother, comparing our ingredients. They were pretty much the same, except the butter and shrimp of course. I cut down the recipe to feed 1-2 people. I only ate a fraction of it though because I overdid myself and made a few different dishes which I will also post about later. This was pretty quick and simple to make, with most ingredients being things I had around the house.

  • 1/2 a block of tofu, drained and pressed.
  • 1/2 cup of white wine
  • 1 1/2 tbsp fresh parsley
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tbsp earth balance or your favorite vegan margarine
  • Juice of one lemon
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

Drain and press the tofu ahead of time and cut into small triangles. Preheat a large, NONSTICK skillet on medium to high heat, and add the oil. I made the mistake of using a stainless steel pan at first and it burned and stuck to the bottom of it. Idiot. Fry the tofu until it is nice and golden on both sides, about 5-7 minutes. Remove and drain on paper towels while preparing the sauce. Using the same pan, add a little more olive oil if needed, to saute chopped garlic for about 30 seconds. Add the white whine and lemon and let the sauce reduce for about 2 minutes. In the mean time, roughly chop parsley, pulled from stems. Add to the pan, along with salt and pepper. Stir and add in the tofu. Then add the earth balance and let it simmer for about 3 minutes.

Remove from heat and pour into a baking dish. The original recipe didn’t go this far but I wanted it to be like my mother’s. Coat the top with italian style breadcrumbs and bake in the oven until golden and bubbling. This kind of dried out the liquid so the only change to this recipe I would make is, instead of adding the butter while cooking on the stove, melt about 4-5 tbsp in the microwave and pour over scampi, THEN put it in the oven at the standard 350. The buttery juice is fantastic when served over rice.Because the juice was kind of absorbed into the tofu while baking, it gave it an excellent lemon flavor, more like a marsala.

I also made theppk.com’s pierogies, and their Crab Cakes. Everything came out amazing and I did not feel left out on Christmas Eve!

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