Pasta with roasted peppers and peanut fried tofu (gluten free)

I made this dish last night.  It’s an amalgam of a couple different recipes.  It’s just a bit labor intensive because there are two different sauces to make; and because of the frying, but it’s worth it if you have some time.  It’s also not a particularly light dish.  Though perhaps I needn’t clarify that since the words “fried” and “peanut” are in the title.  In any case, be mentally prepared to enjoy some delicious, and not unhealthy, fat and calories.

1 package gluten free pasta (I’ve used “spaghetti style” corn or brown rice pasta, and both work nicely)
1 T sesame oil
1 red bell pepper, sliced thin length wise
1 green bell pepper, sliced
1 yellow bell pepper, sliced
1 T crushed garlic
6 scallions, cut into matchstick strips
sea salt

Dressing for noodles
1/4 cup sesame oil (or half sesame/half canola oil)
3 T tamari (or soy sauce if you don’t care about the wheat)
2 T tahini
8 drops hot sauce

Make the noodles and set aside.  Mix all ingredients for the dressing.  Preheat the oven to 400.  Mix the sliced peppers in a large bowl with the sesame oil, crushed garlic and a dash of sea salt.  Lay the peppers on a baking sheet and roast for about 20 minutes, turning once during roasting.  After the peppers are done, toss them with the pasta and tahini dressing.  Top with the scallions.

While the peppers are roasting, make the tofu.  You make this tofu the exact way as in the Golden Star Tofu recipe (see my entry on 8/29/13) – coating the cubes with cornstarch and frying them in canola oil – but after frying you coat them in the following sauce.

1 Block TJs brand extra firm tofu

Peanut Sauce
2 T canola oil
3 scallions, finely chopped
1 T crushed garlic
1/2 T crushed ginger
1 c filtered water
1/2 cup creamy natural peanut butter
1/4 cup tamari (or soy sauce)
1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
3 T firmly packed brown sugar
1/4 t hot pepper flakes (or a dash of cayenne)

Peanut sauce coated tofu nuggets 
Heat the oil, then toss in the scallions (or onions), garlic, and ginger.  After a few moments of cooking, add the rest of the ingredients, bring to a near boil, then simmer for 10 minutes.  Take off the heat and set aside.  Once the tofu nuggets have drained on a paper towel for a bit, toss the nuggets in this sauce.

You’ll probably have more sauce than you need for one block of tofu, but you can use leftover sauce in stir fries or over salad rolls!
Serve the tofu over the noodle recipe above.  Top with crushed peanuts and chopped cucumber if desired.  Yum!

Final dish


The pasta dish comes from the cookbook 1000 Vegetarian.  It’s called “Chilled Noodles and Peppers” page 371.  The only thing I do differently is to use GF noodles, tamari in place of soy sauce, and I add garlic.  This is one of the best cookbooks I own – I highly recommend it to anyone wanting to explore some delicious vegetarian recipes!
The peanut sauce recipe comes from Gourmet magazine (April 1996).  I found it on Epicurious. 

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