Recipe Finder

The Washington Post

Gingery Tofu Sliders

Gingery Tofu Sliders 4.000

Linda Davidson/The Washington Post

Weeknight Vegetarian Aug 6, 2014

These delightful little sandwiches are stacked with flavorful pan-fried tofu, avocado, kimchi and more, in the style of Vietnamese banh mi.

The tofu is the centerpiece, and non-negotiable, but consider the other elements flexible: To keep in the spirit, make sure to include something pickled (carrots, cucumbers, green beans, beets), something spicy (other sliced chili peppers, Sriracha, chipotle), a smear of fat (butter, Greek yogurt) and seasoning (soy sauce, hoisin, Maggi, salt/pepper), all adjusted to your taste depending on the other ingredients.

The secret to making banh mi easy to eat -- and this includes sliders like these -- is to lightly toast the bread and to partially hollow out the top bun to make more room for the fillings. (If desired, to cut down on the carbs, you can serve these as open-faced sliders instead; place the cucumber slices on top for easy handling.)

Make Ahead: The tofu needs to marinate for at least 30 minutes at room temperature or up to overnight in the refrigerator. The pan-fried tofu can be refrigerated for up to 5 days; rewarm in a low-heat oven before making the sandwiches, if desired.


Servings:
4

When you scale a recipe, keep in mind that cooking times and temperatures, pan sizes and seasonings may be affected, so adjust accordingly. Also, amounts listed in the directions will not reflect the changes made to ingredient amounts.

Tested size: 4 servings; makes 12 sliders

Ingredients
  • 1-pound block firm or super-firm tofu
  • Pinch freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh ginger juice (see NOTE)
  • 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil, plus more as needed
  • 12 soft rolls or mini hamburger buns, split and lightly toasted
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • Fine sea salt
  • 1/2 small cucumber, cut into 12 thin slices
  • 1/2 cup kimchi, drained of excess liquid
  • 24 slices pickled jalapeño peppers
  • 1/4 cup loosely packed cilantro sprigs
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise (optional)

Directions

Line a baking sheet or large plate with a double layer of paper towels. Cut the tofu lengthwise into 1/2-inch-thick slabs. Then cut each slab crosswise to form 12 squarish pieces, about the size of your slider buns or rolls. Arrange the tofu slabs on the paper towels to partially drain while you make the marinade.

Stir together the pepper, honey, ginger juice, soy sauce, toasted sesame oil and canola oil in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish or other pan large enough to hold the slabs in a single layer. Add the tofu, turning each piece to coat well. Marinate for 30 to 45 minutes or as long as 2 hours, turning every 15 minutes or so. (If desired, cover and refrigerate overnight.)

Remove the tofu from the marinade. (The remaining marinade can be used as the basis of a salad dressing, if desired.)

Heat a heavy nonstick or cast-iron skillet or grill pan over medium-high heat. (If you're not using nonstick, first brush a little canola oil in the pan.) Water flicked into the pan should evaporate in seconds. Working in batches to avoid crowding, sear the tofu for 1 to 2 minutes per side (a little longer if using a grill pan), turning with one or two thin spatulas, until the tofu has some dark chestnut browning. Transfer to a wire rack to cool for a few minutes.

To assemble the sliders, use a fork or your fingers to gently pull out/discard much of the bread from underside of the bun tops. Halve and pit the avocado; scoop out the flesh, spreading about a tablespoon's worth on each bottom bun. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt. Top each with a piece of the seared tofu, a cucumber slice, about 2 teaspoons of kimchi, 2 jalapeño slices and a sprig or two of cilantro. Smear a teaspoon of mayonnaise on the underside of each bun top, if using; cap all of the sliders and serve.

NOTE: Extract ginger juice by grating unpeeled fresh ginger root with a Microplane or Japanese grater, then press the solids through a fine-mesh strainer to obtain the liquid. A chubby, 1 1/2-inch knob of ginger yields about 1 1/2 teaspoons of juice. (You can also find Ginger People brand ginger juice in some stores.)


Add it
Rate it

Recipe Source

Adapted from "The Banh Mi Handbook," by Andrea Nguyen (Ten Speed Press, 2014).

Tested by Joe Yonan.

E-mail questions to the Food Section.

E-mail questions to the Food Section at food@washpost.com.

Avg. Rating (2)

Rate this recipe

Nutritional Facts

Ingredients are too variable for a meaningful analysis.

Most Read lifestyle
Show Comments