Tofu Tom

My boyfriend, Tom, is probably one of the most typically omnivorous people you could meet. Whilst he embraced both my vegetarianism and veganism with open arms, he has always made it clear that he loves all things meaty. Cue me hiding in my room every time he cooks flesh in our open-plan kitchen. However, something took me by surprise at the start of the month and continues to surprise me as we progress through January. Tom succumbed to my semi-serious pleas to take the Veganuary pledge. And not only that, he has managed to stick to it. So far so good.

Veganuary aims to reduce the harm and suffering caused to animals and our environment by encouraging people world wide to go vegan for the month of January. Tom cites his reasons for doing Veganuary as wanting to shift a few pounds and sees it as a sort of experiment. After all, how much difference can being vegan for a month really make?

11 days in and already he is beginning to look a little leaner and claims that he generally feels better within himself. He’s not doing it half-heartedly either. He’s doing everything from scrutinising food packaging in supermarkets to experimenting with ways in which to veganise his favourite dishes. I was hugely impressed when he cooked up this sticky oriental tofu dish and I feel compelled to share the tasty recipe.

INGREDIENTS (serves 3)
•2-3 tbsps maple syrup
•40ml soy sauce
•75ml rich hoisin sauce
•1 garlic clove, crushed
•1 red chilli, finely sliced
•10g ginger, peeled and chopped
•300g firm tofu, drained and cut into slices
•spring onion to serve

1) Pre-heat the oven to 190c. Mix the first 6 ingredients in a bowl and marinate the tofu for at least one hour.
2) Place the tofu on a baking tray and cook in the oven for 25-30 minutes. Remove the tofu from the baking tray and add a little water to the remaining marinade to form more of a sauce.

Sprinkle over the spring onion and serve with rice and pak choi. Normally made with pork, this dish provides the perfect balance of sweet and spice.

I’m confident that Tom will persevere with his veganism right up to the 31st and I look forward to sampling more of his culinary experiments!


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