6 cloves of Garlic (peeled), 5 for the marinade; 1 clove for the dressing.
60g of fresh root Ginger (peeled), 40g for the marinade; 20g for the dressing.
¼ Cucumber, sliced.
1 Medium carrot, peeled and Julienned.
5-6 Cherry Tomatoes, halved.
Small handful of Baby Spinach.
2-3 Baby Corn, cut into small slices.
3-4 Spring Onions, finely chopped.
Unwrap and remove the weights from the top of your tofu. (We placed our two blocks of tofu on a large dinner plate and covered them with kitchen roll. Then we compressed the tofu by placing a deep baking tray with a heavy jar on top.) Using a sharp knife cut the tofu roughly into 3x2x1cm chunks. This makes them big enough for baking and small enough to be bite-sized. Set to one side.
Now make the marinade. We recommend using a small blender or food processor for this if you have one. Add 5 cloves of garlic and 40g of root ginger to your blender along with 2 Tbsp each of Toasted Sesame Oil, Tamari Sauce, Rice Mirin, Brown Rice Vinegar and the 2 tsp of Chilli Powder.
Blend until the ginger and garlic have been fully minced. You should have a smooth liquid.
Half fill the base of a large plastic container or several small ones (such as old take-away boxes) with the marinade. Make sure you keep some marinade aside to pour over the top of the tofu later.
Now gently coat each tofu piece in the marinade and fill the base of the container with coated tofu. Try to avoid stacking if possible, but if you have to only two layers. Pour the excess marinade over the top of the tofu.
Cover and place in the fridge for at least 2-3 hours or better still allow to marinate overnight.
Pre-heat the oven to 180°c Fan/200°c/Gas Mark 6. Lay the blocks of Tofu on a non-stick baking sheet on baking trays. Space them out so that the heat can bake the sides nicely!
Place in the oven for 40-45 minutes. The blocks will look a little charred, but this will taste fine. Allow the blocks to cool completely before preparing the salad. This is a large batch of Baked Tofu, so you may want to eat some warm from the oven.
Cook the edamame noodles in a pan of water for around 4-5 minutes or until just soft. Rinse under cold water and allow to drain.
Prepare the salad dressing. Use a blend if you have one or you will need to mince the garlic and ginger by hand. The blender also mixes the oil and vinegar better. Add one clove of garlic and 20g of root ginger to a blender along with 1 Tbsp Toasted Sesame Oil, 3 Tbsp Tamari Sauce, 3 Tbsp Rice Mirin, 5-6Tbsp of Extra Virgin Olive Oil and the honey. Blend until emulsified. Then stir in the toasted Sesame Seeds and the Spring Onions.
Now build the salad. In a suitable glass jar with a lid start by spooning in 6 Tbsp of the salad dressing. Then cover the base with a generous layer of noodles. Gentle press down with your fingertips.
Add a layer of baked tofu and then add layers of all the salad ingredients. Keep gently compressing and squeezing bits around the sides. We found the the tomato halves were good for this.
Store in the fridge until you are ready to serve. This salad is easy to prepare the night before, although you may want to add the fresh salad ingredients the next morning if you container isn't completely airtight to avoid wilting.
Any left over dressing can be poured into a separate container and taken with you for pouring over whilst serving.
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