Monday, March 4, 2013

Tofu Egg Rolls

It's Monday again, and that means I completed another goal towards my 52 week challenge over the weekend. This week it was tofu and I really struggled with whether I was even going to do it since I loathe tofu. I've had it on several occasions out at restaurants and have never liked it. It's spongy, the consistency is weird, and it doesn't really taste like anything.

In the spirit of the challenge, I decided to do it anyway. Hence, something sort of safe, tofu egg rolls.

Last week while visiting some of my favorite blogs, I came across this recipe for chicken egg rolls. I figured tofu could be easily substituted, so that's what I did - but I also made half of them with chicken in case the tofu ones were totally gross. My husband had one of each and he said he liked the tofu ones better - go figure!

Tofu Egg Rolls
adapted from Elly Says Opa!

2 Tbsp. vegetable oil, divided
1 package of extra firm tofu
4 scallions, sliced, white and green parts divided
2 Tbsp. low-sodium soy sauce, divided
4 cups coleslaw mix
3 cloves garlic, minced
3/4″ knob of ginger, peeled and grated
2 cups fresh bean sprouts
1 package egg roll wrappers (the package I picked up contained 15 wrappers and was perfect for this recipe)
1 Tbsp. cornstarch, mixed with 3 tbsp cold water
cooking spray

Before starting, your tofu will need to be drained. Do this by setting on a plate with a paper towel underneath and on top of the tofu block. Place a heavy pan on top of the paper towel and press down. I let my sit like that for about a half hour before I used it and it seemed to work out okay.

Heat 1 Tbsp. oil in wok or large pan over high heat for 2 minutes. Add tofu to the wok; cook about 2-3 minutes, breaking up as  you cook, before adding 1 Tbsp. of the soy sauce and the scallion whites. Continue to cook until chicken is browned and nearly cooked through, about 2-3 more minutes. Remove chicken to a plate and set aside to cool.

To the same pan, add the remaining 1 Tbsp. of vegetable oil. Stir in the coleslaw mix, garlic, ginger, and remaining Tbsp. of soy sauce. Use tongs to “toss” the vegetables. Cook, over high heat, for about 2 minutes or, until cabbage begins to wilt. Toss in the bean sprouts and scallion greens, and cook for about 1 minute more. Remove from the heat.

Combine the tofu and vegetables, mixing well. Place a colander in your sink, or over a large bowl. Add the egg roll mixture to the colander. Using several layers of paper towels, press down firmly on the egg roll filling, pressing out as much moisture as possible. Repeat process several times. Let filling cool before rolling into wrappers. (Make sure you don't skip this step - otherwise your egg rolls will end up soggy.)

Here's what the mixture looks like after it's drained.
Preheat the oven to 425.  Wrap the rolls according to the package directions, dipping your finger in the cornstarch/water mixture and then using it to seal the roll. Place the rolls on a baking sheet, spray with cooking oil. Bake until golden brown, about 15 minutes.

These egg rolls turned out fantastic. Since it's only me and my husband, I froze the ones we didn't eat so that we'll have something quick to eat in the future if dinner plans go awry. 

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