I’ve been on a bowl kick lately. Typically, I’ll just scrounge up whatever veggie scraps and bits of plant-based protein I have in my fridge, whip up a sauce, and make it dinner. If that sounds daunting to you, trust me – I didn’t used to be this way. It got to a point where I started feeling comfortable and (gasp!) even confident in the kitchen, and that’s when I stopped feeling like I would fail if I didn’t follow a recipe EXACTLY how it was written.
It was one of these off-the-cuff weeknight dinners that led to this recipe for an Almond Butter Tofu Bowl with Kale and Summer Squash. As soon as you get your copy of Frugal Vegan in the mail, you’ll realize just how much I love peanut sauce. The recipe is used several times throughout the book. But almond butter sauce? Now this was territory I’d yet to explore. As it turns out, almond butter tofu is just as good if not better than tofu drizzled in peanut sauce.
The rest of the bowl is pretty flexible. Don’t be afraid to veer from this recipe and swap in your favorite grains (I love quinoa, couscous, and farro) or use whatever seasonal veggies you have in your fruit bowl or crisper drawer. Arugula and baby spinach would both be fantastic, as would zucchini, eggplant, snap peas, or sweet potato. Use this as a base to make your summer produce shine. Note: I used lacinto kale (aka dinosaur kale) in this recipe because I find it to be sweeter and more tender than regular kale. If you can't find it, feel free to use what you're used to.Print
For the bowl
- ½ cup brown rice, uncooked (or the grain of your choice)
- 1 14-oz. package extra-firm tofu
- 1 summer squash
- 1 ½ tsp. olive oil, divided
- ½ bunch lacinto (dinosaur) kale
- 1 Tbsp. hemp seeds
- Pinch of salt and black pepper
For the almond butter sauce
- ½ cup almond butter
- ¼ cup water
- 1 Tbsp. coconut aminos
- Pinch of salt
- Combine the brown rice (or grain of your choice) in a medium saucepan with 1 cup of water. Bring the mixture to a boil, cover, and reduce to a simmer. Cook for 10 to 15 minutes, until the water is absorbed. Remove from heat and keep the pot covered for an additional 5 minutes. Then fluff with a fork and divide the grains between two bowls.
- Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Press the tofu between several layers of paper towel to remove as much moisture as possible. Slice the tofu into 1-inch cubes and season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Transfer tofu to one of the prepared baking sheets and bake for 30 minutes, flipping the pieces halfway through.
- Slice the summer squash into ¼-inch rounds and then slice them in half. Toss with 1 teaspoon of olive oil and season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Transfer the squash to the other baking sheet and roast for 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally. At this rate, the tofu and squash should be done around the same time.
- While the tofu and squash are baking, remove the tough stems from the kale and slice the leaves into thin ribbons. Transfer the sliced kale to a bowl and massage ½ teaspoon of olive oil into the leaves to soften them up. Divide the kale between the two bowls.
- Prepare the almond butter sauce by combining all the ingredients in a medium-sized mixing bowl and whisking until smooth. Add another teaspoon of water as needed to achieve a saucy consistency.
- When the tofu and squash are done cooking, divide the squash between the two bowls. Add the tofu to the almond butter sauce and toss to coat. Then divide the sauced-up tofu to the bowls and sprinkle with hemp seeds. Serve warm.