Pan-Seared Pine Nut Pesto Tofu (Non-Soy option included)
Candle 79 Cookbook
1 cup pine nuts
3 T extra-virgin olive oil
2 T freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 cup water
2 cups chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
3 cups fresh basil leaves
2 cloves garlic
3 T nutritional yeast
1/2 t sea salt
2 pounds extra-firm tofu, sliced into 1 by 2 by 3-inch pieces – substitute for non-soy eaters mushrooms or seitan (not gluten free)
2 T extra-virgin olive oil
At the Candle 79 Restaurant, they serve this dish with roasted fingerling potatoes and sautéed trumpet mushrooms. They also make summer sandwiches with this tofu, roasted red peppers, and pesto on slices of grilled country bread.
To make the marinade, put the pine nuts, olive oil, lemon juice, and water in a blender and process to form a chunky puree.
Add the parsley, basil, garlic, nutritional yeast, and salt and process for 1 minute.
In a large pot, bring about 3 quarts of water to a boil. Add the tofu, decrease the heat, and simmer for two minutes. Skip this step if you are using mushrooms or seitan.
Drain the tofu well, then transfer to a large, nonreactive, ovenproof baking dish.
Pour the marinade over it, cover, and let marinate in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours or overnight. Turn the tofu occasionally.
Remove the tofu from the marinade and reserve the marinade.
Heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan over low heat. Add the tofu and cook until lightly browned, about 2 minutes per side.
To serve, heat the marinade and spoon a bit of it in the center of the plate, then top with the warm tofu.