This is another stove- and oven-free recipe from me today, which I hope will be helpful for some of you who are experiencing the thick of summer. Traditional poke is a Hawaiian dish of seasoned raw fish. This tofu poke is a refreshing vegan version that’s packed with flavor. That’s all thanks to savory marinated tofu, mango, sesame, and tangy pickled shallots.
I’ve actually been using the oven quite a bit… just over the past week or two I’ve made tortilla pie (following an Oh She Glows recipe), a vegan lasagna (which I mentioned in my kale, garlic scape and walnut pesto post), and baked quinoa meatballs (from the Minimalist Baker cookbook). Basically I’m stockpiling recipes that made good leftovers, because I’m in the middle of moving right now, and once I’m firmly occupying my new place, I won’t have a stove for a little while. So I want to make sure I have a big enough variety of meals in the freezer that I don’t resort to takeout every day :).
This tofu poke will also be a great option for cooking during stove-less times. For the tofu itself, all you have to do is freeze and then thaw it again, then slice it up and it’s ready to go! The only part of this tofu poke recipe that requires heat is the quick-pickled shallots, and I make mine in the microwave even when a stove is available! I know some of you do avoid microwaves and you can feel free to make the shallots on your stovetop if you like. Just add everything to a pan, bring it to a gentle boil, then turn off the heat and let the shallots continue sitting in the liquid for 10+ minutes.
One last thing: I meant to also serve the tofu poke with toasted macadamia nuts, which was inspired by a (non-vegan) poke recipe I saw on Serious Eats. Sadly, I apparently have no self-control when it comes to macadamia nuts. I bought a little bag of Royal Hawaiian Orchards macadamias and sampled a few of them for research purposes, but then somehow the bag was empty when I went to chop them up to add to my vegan poke ;). So I’m listing them as optional for the recipe, but I do think they’d be a lovely addition, and a rare (for me) opportunity to use macadamias in a savory dish.
Tofu Poke (Hawaiian Marinated Tofu) with Quick-Pickled Shallots and Mango
For the quick-pickled shallots:
- 2 shallots thinly-sliced
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- juice of 1 lime
For the tofu poke:
- 1 block firm tofu
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1/2 tablespoon sriracha or other chili sauce
- 1/2 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
- 3 green onions white and light green parts, finely chopped
- 1 ripe mango cubed (I used a very ripe Tommy Atkins mango, but other varieties should also work)
- pickled shallots (see recipe above)
- (optional) chopped toasted macadamia nuts, for garnish
- (optional) sesame seeds, for garnish
To prepare the tofu:
- Drain excess liquid from the tofu, then place it in an airtight container in the freezer at least overnight. The day you want to make the tofu poke, take out the tofu in the morning and place it in the refrigerator to thaw. You can also thaw it more quickly by gently running warm water over it. If there end up being frozen pieces in the middle when you go to cube the tofu, you can rescue it by microwaving it at 20-second intervals until thawed, but keep in mind that this dish is best served cold.
- After the tofu has thawed, wrap it with a clean towel or paper towels and put a heavy pan or a book on top of it to press out any extra liquid that remains. Don't do this too aggressively, as thawed frozen tofu can be a bit delicate. Press the tofu for 10 minutes (you can prepare the pickled shallots in the meantime).
To make the pickled shallots:
- Add the sliced shallots to a microwave-safe dish, and then pour the rice vinegar and lime juice over them.
- Microwave at full power for 45 seconds, stir, and microwave for another 30 seconds.
- Let the shallots sit in the bowl while you prepare the rest of the tofu poke.
To make the tofu poke:
- Cube the tofu and add it to a large bowl.
- Whisk together the soy sauce, sriracha, sesame oil, and half of the chopped green onions. Pour this mixture over the tofu - take care to distribute it evenly as you pour; the tofu will absorb it very quickly. Use a spatula to gently stir the tofu to incorporate the marinate. Taste one of the cubes and add more seasoning if desired.
- To prepare individual servings of the tofu poke, scoop some of the marinated tofu into a dish and add a handful of the cubed mango, pickled shallots to taste, and a big pinch of sesame seeds. To make the tofu poke go further, you can serve it with rice (I recommend seasoned rice, as the poke itself isn't very sauce).
- Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to a few days. Tofu poke should be enjoyed cold.
Tofu poke adapted from Margaritas in the Rain.
In case anyone else happens to be in the same boat as me, here are a few more recipes from the archives that don’t require a stove or oven to make: