Rice is one of the easiest and most versatile staples of the gluten-free diet, and the nice thing is that it is as valuable as leftovers as it is fresh out of the rice cooker. It can be frozen and saved for a later meal, combined with a gluten-free vegetarian meal pouch like Tasty Bite. Or, if left in the fridge for a day or so, it is wonderful sauteed up in a delicious vegetarian fried rice. I’ve posted fried rice several times at the Book of Yum, and have made all of the recipes multiple times. The great thing about fried rice is that small changes can have a big impact on the recipe. So, with that in mind, I recently whipped up a fried rice featuring vegetables easily available in Winter AND a great protein powerhouse, tofu. Don’t let the length of the directions scare you- the technique is the same for each layer of the dish, but preparing the components separately makes a big difference in the final recipe. Enjoy!
Szechuan Tofu Vegetarian Fried Rice Recipe
Seasoning and oils:
1 or 2 tsp. szechuan peppercorns, ground to medium grind in spice grinder or mortar and pestle
1/2 tsp. salt
canola oil, dash of sesame oil
2 tsp. diced ginger
2 tsp. grated ginger (or more)
1 package firm Nasoya cubed tofu, drained
3 cups cold (white) rice, leftover from the day before if possible
Combine marinade ingredients and whisk together. Taste and adjust seasonings to your taste. Cover drained tofu in marinade sauce and reserve while you prepare the rest of the ingredients. I like to prepare all my veggies and place them on a big plate, separated into type, so they are easy to add to the wok. Get all your spices and seasonings ready and measured. Combine sauce ingredients in a small prep bowl. Taste and adjust seasonings to your taste.
To make fried rice:
2. Second, prepare your veggies. Heat two teaspoons or so canola oil in your wok. When it begins to smoke add a pinch of salt and coarse ground szechuan pepper. Add a teaspoon of your diced ginger and as it begins to brown, add your onions and grated ginger. Let it start to cook and then add carrots and green beans. Stir a little until they start to soften. Throw in your green peas (preferably defrosted, but I won’t tell if they are straight from the freezer.) Add all but a few teaspoons of your sauce to the center of the wok along with your diced sweet pepper and combine, letting simmer. When veggies seem done (slightly al dente is good), remove veggies (and sauce) from wok and reserve (with sauce) on your veggie prep dish.
3. Make the eggs.