Well, yesterday while I was in the midst of making the Portobello Burritos from The Urban Vegan: 250 Simple, Sumptuous Recipes from Street Cart Favorites to Haute Cuisine I also decided to make her Curried Wheat Berry-Spelt Salad. This one takes a while to make simply because wheat berries take a while to cook up. The curry sauce comes together quickly though, so if you have pre-made wheat berries and spelt, then this would come together in a snap. I, however, did not so it took close to two hours to cook. The sauce uses tahini, curry powder, lemon juice, agave nectar, and other Thai-inspired spices. Again, it came together very easily and would likely make a good sauce over steamed veggies and rice as well.The veggies in this salad included carrots, bell pepper, and onion. I added peas as well for additional color.
I will admit a few snafus I had with this one. First off, I wasn't thinking straight and for some reason thought "Spelt, well I have spelt flour." Duh, spelt as in the grain. Oh well, I just substituted with more wheat berries. I also missed the part about soaking and draining raisins rather than soaking them then cooking them along with the wheat berries. So, grains a little sweater than they probably would have been otherwise. Lastly, the curry paste I had was the opposite of spicy. I know that I'll be finding another brand to use. Anyway, salad was complete and ready for later use.
I thought that some sort of spicy Thai baked tofu would pair well with the flavors of the salad. Unfortunately, I didn't find any marinades or sauces that sounded like what I was going for in her cookbook. So, after searching around, I came up with the following based on a Spicy Peanut Marinade Sauce from Vegan Verve:
Spicy Peanut Tofu
3/4 cup water
1/4 cup peanut butter (I used natural)
1 1/2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp agave nectar
1 1/2 tsp minced garlic
3/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1 pound extra-firm tofu*
*Note - freezing tofu for a at least three day, then allowing to thaw in the refrigerator will give you a completely different texture (which I prefer). You are able to easily squeeze out the moisture. In turn, the tofu will soak up more of a sauce or marinade.
Whisk together all ingredients making sure that the peanut butter is consistent throughout. This can be used as either a sauce or a marinade.
Pour some of the marinade in the bottom of a large baking dish. Place tofu in marinade and marinate for at least 3 hours to get the best flavor. Be sure to flip the tofu/tempeh a few times during the time frame you choose. Bake tofu at 350 for approximately 1 hour, flipping once.
As a Sauce
Heat on medium/medium-low until it thickens.