Quick Tofu Fried Rice

Last week, I tripped while running….and broke my fall on my phone. I lost all my pictures from recent road trips, my cat and dog, and the pictures from this dinner date! Fortunately, I make this fried rice all the time for weeknight dinners, so the simple ingredients and time weren’t too hard to track down to remake the recipe for photoshoot (and Friday night dinner!) purposes.

I really only have two “go-to” starches for my easy week night dinners: potatoes roasted in a one-pan meal, and rice from an automatic rice cooker. Since I also have a lackadaisical attitude towards measuring ingredients (this blog has been a special challenge for my “pinch of this” attitude), I usually end up with more rice then I need. Luckily, that leftover rice can be turned into a delicious meal the next day! If you’re more disciplined with measuring ingredients than me, some cooked rice chilled for at least half an hour (sometimes I put it in the fridge) will dry the rice enough to be fried.

Like a lot of our other recipes, this one is versatile and can be used with whatever ingredients you have on hand. Different toppings that I have used in the past include peas, diced carrots or celery, ginger, and sriracha.


Ingredients

Fried Tofu

1/2 block of tofu – Use more if desired, though you may have to fry in batches

2 tbs sesame oil

Fried Rice

2 cups cold, cooked rice

2 tbs sesame oil

3 cloves garlic

3-4 tbs rice vinegar

3-4 tbs soy sauce

1 1/2 tbs ginger

1 tbs powdered porcini mushrooms (or 80z sliced mushrooms)

1/2 tsp white pepper (or ground black pepper)

Chile pepper, cilantro, lemongrass to taste (optional)

2 eggs

1 tbs sesame seeds, optional

Instructions

Fried Tofu

  1. Unpack tofu and “press”- I usually do this between two plates over my sink with a soda (or wine) bottle on top of the plate – something heavy! Press for about half an hour to remove excess liquid from tofu.
  2. Slice tofu into thin, bite-sized rectangles (about 1/2 in. thick).
  3. Heat sesame oil in wok or flat griddle over medium heat. Carefully arrange tofu on surface and use spatula to “squish” the pieces. It should make a shrill sound as the moisture is further removed (this is normal!). Repeat several times over 3-4 minutes, or until the shrill sound is less intense.
  4. Carefully flip tofu. It should be golden-brown. Squish with spatula for another 2-3 minutes. Remove from pan to a plate and set aside.

Fried Rice

  1. Add second part of sesame oil to wok and heat over medium-high heat. Mince garlic and saute until golden.
  2. Add rice and separate with spatula to spread evenly throughout pan. Fry for about 2 minutes. If using fresh mushrooms, add these now as well.
  3. Add 3 tbs of soy sauce and rice vinegar to pan and stir to coat rice. If necessary, add a bit more of each to fully cover rice (but give it a minute to absorb to be sure!)
  4. Add spices and stir throughout.
  5. Finally, stir in baked tofu and any additional vegetables until heated through.
  6. Create a well in the middle of the fried rice and add both cracked eggs. Allow to heat until the whites begin to become translucent. Scramble eggs throughout rice until fully cooked.
  7. Serve with sesame seeds for garnish as desired.

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