This might seem like another boring salad post, but I assure you, this salad is one of the best I’ve ever had! I’m no fan of iceberg lettuce salads (or, most of the time, even regular lettuce salads), so I try to find different ways of getting green into my diet. This salad has a lot of different flavors and textures, with none of the watered-down mess that comes with iceberg lettuce.
- Prep your tofu. Slice an extra-firm block in half, then store one half away. (You won’t be needing it here. Wrap up the tofu in a cloth and press it.
- Optional: Put on some grains to cook. I used orzo pasta, but you could easily substitute for any rice or grain.
- Crush some nuts. I used pistachios here, but you could use almonds instead. Just place a couple handfuls of the shelled nuts in a plastic sealed bag and crush them with a hammer until they’re just about to become a powder.
- Rinse two handfuls of brussels sprouts, then chop them up into small, less-than-bite-sized pieces. Place them in a bowl along with a splash or two of balsamic vinegar, a squeeze of fresh lemon, 6-10 drops liquid smoke, 6-10 drops sriracha, and a few pinches ground oregano. Toss everything together and let it sit while you do the next step.
- Unwrap the pressed block of tofu, then cut it into cubes about the size of a 6-sided dice. Place them in a large sauté pan and turn it up to high heat. Sprinkle a heaping pinch of salt over all the pieces, then pour the crushed pistachios over top as well. Gently stir the tofu around to get all the sides coated with the nuts. Let these cook for just a minute more.
- Pour the chopped brussels into the tofu pan, and let everything cook for about 3-5 minutes, stirring often. (To make sure the nuts don’t burn.) Toss in some of the grains/pasta if you’ve made them. Let all the flavors come together and the brussels soften just a bit. (Obviously, you’ll want to keep tasting everything to make sure you don’t want to add more salt or spices.)
Serve hot and enjoy! This makes enough for 2 people or one very hungry person.
The tofu is soft and salty like mozzarella, the brussels are hearty and full-flavored, and the pistachios give this salad a unique, light flavor. I hope you’ll like this as much as I did!