Thai-Style Tofu in Coconut and Lime Sauce

This mild yet complex-tasting dish costs less than $7.00 in total and it can be made in roughly 40-45 minutes from start to finish. Another laughably cheap Casual Kitchen recipe!

Thai-Style Tofu in Coconut and Lime Sauce

1 package firm or extra firm tofu
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
2 Tablespoons olive oil

1/4 cup grated coconut
2 more Tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, cut into slivers
3 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
1 1/2 Tablespoons grated fresh ginger
1 jalapeno pepper finely chopped
1 1/2 Tablespoons regular or vegetarian oyster sauce
1 15 ounce can of coconut milk (fat or low-fat)
3/4 cup water or stock
juice of one lime
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons vinegar
2-3 medium tomatoes, chopped

optional fresh cilantro or basil leaves for garnish

1) Heat oil in a large non-stick pan. Cut tofu into smallish cubes, add to pan, and dust with turmeric. Saute on medium-high heat for 5-7 minutes, until lightly browned. Remove tofu and wipe out pan with a paper towel.

2) Add coconut flakes and fry in dry pan for 2-3 minutes until golden. Add 2 Tablespoons olive oil, then add onion, garlic, ginger and jalapeno. Saute for 4-5 minutes on medium high heat until onion begins to soften.

3) Add all other ingredients except tomatoes and garnish (e.g., oyster sauce, coconut milk, water or stock, lime juice, sugar and vinegar). Bring to a boil, then turn down heat and simmer, uncovered, over medium-low for 10-15 minutes.

4) Stir in chopped tomatoes and serve immediately over rice. Garnish with optional cilantro or basil leaves.

Serves 4-6.

A few recipe notes:
1) Tofu-haters! You can easily substitute chicken or other meat in this dish in place of tofu. Tofu lovers: no need to worry if the tofu sticks a bit to the pan when you are browning it.

2) I never can find plain coconut flakes in our grocery store, so an easy solution is to use sweetened coconut flakes from the baking aisle and just rinse off the sugar. I measure out a generous 1/4 cup into a sieve or strainer and rinse the flakes under running cold water. Let them sit for a few minutes to drain, and then throw them in the pan. Dry-fry them for just a bit longer to allow for the excess water to evaporate away.

Related Posts:
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Six Secrets to Save You from Cooking Burnout
Why Spices Are a Complete Rip-Off and What You Can Do About It

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Kira said...

Yum! I have some tofu and some limes waiting to be used, so this might go on the menu next week.

Daniel said...

Thanks for stopping by KMAYS! Glad to be of service. :) Let me know how it comes out.


Anonymous said...

Whole Foods has sugar free shreded coconut it is also 40% fat free...laughably sinless! Diana Z

Daniel said...

Thank you for the tip Diana! Thanks as always for reading.


Brittany said...

Wow. Tofu is laughably cheap! I've been a "pocketbook vegetarian" (almost meatless for financial reasons), and in my head, tofu was on the expensive side. (Fairly sure it was in the small midwestern town I used to live in, but I live in a large city and it's cheap.) This is a good discovery. This was delicious! I'll be making it again. It was also a good discovery.

However, it does need to sit for a while after it's cooked. Fifteen minutes helped, but it was great the next day.

Daniel said...

Thanks for the feedback Brittany, and I'm happy you got good results (both financial and gustatory!) with this recipe.