I love Tofurky as much as any vegan, but for this year’s Thanksgiving, something about a bowl of grains, roasted fall vegetables, and hearty tofu really captured my imagination. I call this the Harvest Bowl–pumpkin seed crusted tofu steaks and roasted potatoes, parsnip, green beans, and mushrooms, over a bed of brown rice and lentils. The drizzle of truffle oil makes it holiday-worthy. Don’t skip the truffle oil–the nutty, woodsy taste and aroma bring out the flavors and tie everything together!
Pumpkin Seed Crusted Tofu Steaks
1 package extra firm tofu, drained and sliced into 1/4″ thick “steaks”
1/2 cup shelled pumpkin seeds
4 tbsp vegan breadcrumbs
3 tbsp tahini
Salt and pepper
Heat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking tray with foil and lightly oil or dust with cornmeal to prevent sticking. Meanwhile, put the pumpkin seeds and breadcrumbs on a plate, add salt and pepper, and combine well. Put the tahini in a small plate or bowl. Then, take a tofu slice, coat thinly with tahini, then coat with pumpkin seed/ breadcrumb mixture, and place on baking tray. Repeat with the remaining tofu slices, then bake for 35 minutes.
Roasted Fall Vegetables
3-4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, dried thyme or herbs de Provence, salt and pepper
Plenty of your favorite vegetables, cleaned, trimmed, and cubed or sliced
I used potatoes, parsnip, fennel, carrots, green beans, white button mushrooms, shiitake mushrooms, and onions. Whatever you use, do include shiitake mushrooms! They go perfectly with truffle oil. Also recommended are: cippoli onions, shallots, cauliflower, broccoli, Brussels sprouts.
Toss all the vegetables except for mushrooms in a large bowl and coat with oil, salt and pepper, and dried herbs. Put in another baking tray and bake at 400 degrees for 40 minutes. To prevent burning the mushrooms, I suggest adding them to the tray after about 10 minutes.
Brown rice and lentils
1/2 cup brown rice
3/4 cup green lentils
2 1/4 cups water or vegetable stock
Salt and pepper as needed
Bring water or stock to boil in a medium sauce pan. Add brown rice and lentils and boil at high for 4 minutes or so. When it looks about to boil over, reduce heat and simmer for at least 35 minutes. Check to see that all liquid has evaporated. Keep the lid on and let it steam for another 10 minutes.
Take a bowl or a plate, and add the brown rice and lentils mixture at the bottom. Layer with the tofu steaks and vegetables on top. Drizzle with plenty of truffle oil (trust me, it’s worth it!).
Photo: Peaceful Dumpling