The sweet-and-sour sesame citrus dressing coats tofu with a mixture of Asian flavors from soy sauce, ginger, toasted sesame oil and scallions. Prepare this summery salad with whichever greens are freshest at the market.
Make Ahead: The oils will separate in the dressing fairly quickly, so rewhisk before using. It can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.
- For the dressing
- 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
- 2 medium cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons peanut oil
- 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 1 teaspoon tamari (wheat-free soy sauce; may substitute low-sodium soy sauce)
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated ginger (from a 1/2-inch piece peeled ginger root)
- 1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
- Freshly ground black pepper
- For the salad
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 1/2 cup water
- Pinch salt
- 1/2 cup uncooked jasmine rice
- 14 ounces firm tofu, rinsed, drained and cut into 3/4-inch cubes
- 8 cups mixed field greens (about 7 ounces), washed and spun-dry
- 1 medium carrot, peeled and grated
- 1 small cucumber, peeled and chopped (preferably a young or early one)
- 2 scallions, white parts only, minced
For the dressing: Place a small skillet over medium-low heat and add the sesame seeds. Shake the pan frequently for 2 to 3 minutes or until the seeds turn golden brown, being careful not to burn them. Remove from the heat.
Whisk together the garlic, peanut oil, vinegar, orange juice, honey, tamari, ginger and toasted sesame oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Add the toasted sesame seeds; whisk to combine. There should be about 2/3 cup. Re-whisk before using.
For the salad: Combine the wine, water, salt and rice in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil and cook for 1 minute; stir, then reduce the heat to low; cover and cook for 18 to 20 minutes, stirring once or twice. The rice should have absorbed all of the liquid and be tender. Transfer to a bowl and fluff with a fork.
Lightly grease a large skillet with nonstick cooking oil spray and place over medium-high heat. Add the tofu and 2 tablespoons of the dressing. Cook for 10 to 12 minutes, turning the tofu every 2 minutes or so, until it is golden brown.
Remove from the heat; add 1 tablespoon of the dressing, turning the tofu to coat. Add the rice to the skillet and stir to incorporate.
Toss the greens, carrot, cucumber and scallions with the remaining 7 tablespoons of dressing in a serving bowl. Scatter the tofu-rice mixture over the top of the salad. Serve immediately.
Adapted from "The Big Summer Cookbook," by Jeff Cox (Wiley, 2010).
Tested by Bonnie S. Benwick.
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