National Sandwich Day - Makin' Bacon (from Tofu, that is)
To celebrate, I'm going to, of course, make a sandwich. I may have mentioned it a time or two, but let me mention it again. I MISS BACON. Of all the meaty, dairy, eggy things that have been exiled from my life, bacon stands alone in the I'm craving department.
Milk was just a beverage waiting to be replaced by another beverage (like that Silk Dark Chocolate Almond Milk that I'm sure is laced with crack.)
Cheese was just a sprinkling habit I had to break.
Eggs were a challenge at first (especially in baking), but they were the first thing I put on my list of things I don't miss at all.
But bacon. Oh bacon.
So, I make some bacon type stuff out of tofu when I'm dying for a BLT. Here's how I do it:
- A block of firm or extra firm tofu, drained and pressed
- Some oil for frying (not olive)
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce or Bragg's liquid aminos
- 1/8 teaspoon liquid smoke (choose a good one like Wright's)
- pepper (your discretion, I like a lot)
- maple syrup (again, your discretion)
- nutritional yeast flakes (enough to sprinkle over all)
What you need to do:
- Mix together your liquids (soy sauce, liquid smoke, maple syrup) with the pepper and set aside.
- Slice the tofu thinly, lengthwise. Kind of like bacon strips. Side Note: I can only fit half a brick in my pan, so the liquid measurements here are actually for half a block. Double the liquid mix to make two batches or if you have a big honkin' pan or griddle.
- Oil your pan. I use maybe like a tablespoon. When the oil is nice and hot (rippling in the pan but not smoking) then add the tofu strips and make sure they don't touch each other or they will stick together and be hard to flip over.
- When it starts to brown on the bottom, flip the strips over.
- When both sides are browned, sprinkle the liquid mixture over the strips. When it is soaked in, sprinkle the nutritional yeast flakes over the strips and then flip them over. Add more flakes to that side and after about 30 seconds, flip once more. Another 30 seconds in the pan (this is just to get the flakes sticking) and you're done. Unless you like super crispy stuff (I sort of do) and then you can brown them to what looks like your liking).
Add your sandwich fixins. I like lettuce, tomato and avocado and some Vegenaise. I add all this to whatever bread I have around the house (toasted, of course). Add a pickle and some ridgy Kettle chips or whatever floats your boat and YUM! My kid wants me to make this tofacon all the time and he's the carnivore of the house so if he gives it his seal of approval, then I know I'm getting closer to the end of my bacon quest.
My favorite sandwich from outside the house is from Which Wich. I get a vegetarian tomato and avocado on wheat with red onions, lettuce, tomato, cucumbers, bell peppers, and salt and pepper.
Watch out with the vegetarian options there. Their allergen information says that the caprese has milk (duh- the cheese) and the black bean patty, which you would assume was OK, actually has milk and egg. You can still get Hummus and the Elvis Wich, though. And they're super nice about answering questions about what's in what there and even making stuff up for you if you just want to wing it. Also, go for the crispy strings onions for some crunch on a sandwich some time. They're not battered with milk or egg. There are options at Which Wich, just so you know when you're out and about.
P.S. Bacon, I love and miss you, but I'm much happier with you in your alive-and-breathing, fun and smart piggy form. I even removed the bacon sub-reddit from my front page to avoid temptation.
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