Summer Vegetable and Tofu Kebabs
Reprinted with permission from Afro-Vegan by Bryant Terry, copyright (c) 2014. Published by Ten Speed Press, a division of Random House, Inc.
You can’t go wrong serving these kebabs at a cookout. You can prepare them in advance, and they’re practically a meal unto themselves when served along with cous-cous, potato salad, or a grain-based dish. And what a great way to showcase summer’s bounty of vegetables! Tweak the recipe by using whatever vegetables are most exciting to you. Note that this recipe requires a fair amount of advance preparation: freezing and then thawing the tofu, marinating the thawed tofu overnight, and preparing a double batch of the barbecue sauce.
Yield: 5 servings
5 cups Pomegranate- Peach Barbecue Sauce
4 ounces small round potatoes, halved
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for oiling
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon coarse sea salt
Pinch of cayenne pepper
1 globe eggplant (about 1 pound), cut into 1-inch chunks
1 green bell pepper, cut into 1-inch squares
1 large red bell pepper, cut into 1-inch squares
1 large red onion, quartered vertically, then halved crosswise
Put the tofu on a plate. Put another plate on top and weight it (a 28-ounce can of tomatoes works well) to press the excess moisture out of the tofu. Let sit for at least 20 minutes. Drain away the liquid and cut the tofu into 1/2-inch cubes. Put the tofu and 2 cups of the barbecue sauce in a large bowl and toss gently until the tofu is evenly coated. Transfer all the contents of the bowl to a ziplock bag and refrigerate overnight.
Remove the tofu from the refrigerator and let it warm to room temperature. Put the potatoes in a small saucepan, add water to cover, and bring to a boil over high heat. Decrease the heat to medium-low, cover, and cook until just fork-tender, 8 to 10 minutes. Drain and let cool.
Prepare a medium‑high grill. While the grill is heating, put the oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt, and cayenne in a large bowl and whisk to combine. Add the potatoes, eggplant, green and red bell peppers, and onion and toss gently until evenly coated.
Next, thread the tofu and vegetables onto 10 metal skewers, distributing them evenly among the skewers. Put the remaining 3 cups barbecue sauce in a small saucepan and add any sauce remaining in the ziplock bag. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring frequently, and continue cooking for about 1 minute. Transfer to a serving bowl.
Brush the grill grate with oil. Put the kebabs on the grill and cook, turning frequently, until the tofu is lightly charred and the vegetables are fork-tender, about 8 minutes. Serve with the hot barbecue sauce alongside.
Pomegranate-Peach Barbecue Sauce
Yield: About 2-1/2 cups
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
1/4 teaspoon coarse sea salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 cup diced peeled peaches
1 cup tomato sauce
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup pomegranate molasses
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
2 tablespoons tamari
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 to 3 tablespoons chopped chipotle in adobo sauce
2 teaspoons minced fresh sage
Warm the oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, salt, and cayenne and sauté until the onion is soft, 5 to 7 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes.
Transfer to a blender. Add the peaches, tomato sauces, water, vinegar, pomegranate molasses, lime juice, tamari, tomato paste, chipotle chili, and process until smooth.
Pour the sauce back into the saucepan and simmer over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until thick, about 20 minutes. Stir in the sage and simmer for 1 to 2 minutes. Taste and season with more salt if desired. Use immediately or store in a tightly sealed jar in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.