You know spring is here when the rhubarb is up, and it is one of the nicest and earliest spring garden treats. Rhubarb has numerous health benefits, particularly things related to the liver and kidneys (the cleaners of your body).
To make this you need only one cup of cooked rhubarb, and usually you will be making more than that (the remaining can be refrigerated in a sealed glass jar or other container for at least two weeks—rhubarb also contains antimicrobials that keep if from going bad/mouldy). You can use the remaining for vinaigrettes, whip it up to make a deliciously creamy sorbet, use it to make fudgcicles (both coming soon), eat it on it’s own, or dilute it in water to make a delicious cleansing juice! In all cases you would probably like to sweeten it with something—agave, maple syrup, raw sugar or stevia all work well.
I used frozen rhubarb from last year to make this, so when I cooked the rhubarb I did not add any water. If cooking from fresh rhubarb just put a tiny bit of water in the bottom of the pot (enough so it doesn’t stick at first) and then add chopped (2-3 cm pieces) of rhubarb to the pot and cook on low-med heat until soft and tender. Choose the pot size based on the amount you are cooking up.
1 cup of cooked (unsweetened) rhubarb
¼ cup Nutritional Yeast
2 ts. balsamic vinegar
1 tbs. olive oil
3 tbs. of raw dark brown sugar or agave syrup
4 cloves of fresh garlic (coarsely chopped)
½ ts. sea salt (or more for taste)
¼ ts. of ground black pepper
1 package of firm or extra firm tofu
2 tbs. of cooking oil (as you know, I like grapeseed…)
Toppings and bottoms (optional)
1-2 cups fresh arugula
Nuts, including pecans or walnuts; but wild nuts such as butternut, black walnut or hickory really add to the wild and earthy flavour of the rhubarb. You can also toast them if you like.
2 tbs. of coarsely chopped fresh parsley
Blender, or hand wand and large mixing cup
1 large baking sheet with rims
An oven, spatula and spoon
Preheat oven to 400°F (205°C)
Add all glaze ingredients into a blender, or a mixing cup (if using a hand-wand). Blend until smooth and frothy. Set aside.
Slice tofu into 1-2 cm slices or triangles (I sometimes prefer triangles, but it depends on my mood and how I plan to arrange things).
Grease an edged baking sheet with oil (use a brush or your fingers to ensure even coverage).
Dip tofu slices into the glaze and lay onto the baking sheet, ensuring that the bottoms are covered. If you have more time, marinate the tofu in the glaze (I used a bread pan). This step isn’t necessary but helps the flavours soak in.
Top each of the tofu slices with a little extra glaze, using a spoon. Just spoon a little on and spread it over for even and full coverage.
Place the filled baking sheet in the oven. After about 10 min. flip the tofu and spread glaze on the (now) upper side. (I apologise for not having photos of these steps).
Repeat until all the glaze is used and caramelized, and the tofu is slightly crispy around the edges.
Serve on a bed of arugula and top with nuts and parsley (optional, but delicious).
Serves 2-4 depending on your hunger and what you eat with it.
Goes great with millet woodland risotto as shown (if you are feeling woodsie and wild); or with pasta or grain salads, green salads, pilaffs, roasted baby potatoes, etc.
Left-overs (if you are lucky enough to have any) can be sliced into a whole grain wrap with greens, sliced avocado and thinly sliced fresh onions or garlic. Enjoy!