Napa Cabbage is a sweet, mild Asian cabbage that usually appears in our CSA shares early in the season, before traditional cabbages and again in the fall. Napa cabbage is great in salads, slaws, stir-fries, soups. It’s surprisingly versatile, although many of our CSA members are trying it for the first time. This salad is a vegan twist on a chicken salad spiked with crunchy napa. I’m not a vegetarian – and I preferred this to the chicken!
If you have the time, press the water out of the tofu before pan-frying it. The texture really made a difference. I haven’t done this in ages, but just put the tofu on a plate, put another plate on top, and weigh it down with a heavy can or cast iron skillet. Let it sit for about 30 minutes and pour the water off. Let the edges of the tofu get really golden, it gives it a nice flavor and texture in the salad.
Napa Cabbage Tofu Salad
12 oz firm tofu
canola or high heat oil for frying
4 cups thinly sliced napa cabbage (about 1/2 a head)
2 spring onions thinly sliced or about 1 cup thinly sliced scallions
1/3 cup vegenaise or mayonaise substitute
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoon F. Oliver’s Tarragon Olive Oil (or sub olive oil + tarragon)
fresh ground black pepper
Make the tofu. About 30 minutes before preparing place the tofu on a heavy plate. Place another heavy plate of similar size and weight on top, then weigh down the plate with a can or heavy skillet. Let sit about 30 minutes, pour the water off the bottom plate, then slice the tofu into about one inch thick slices.
Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Pour a thin layer of oil into the pan, enough to generously coat the pan, but not deep-fry. Heat until the oil shimmers, then pan-fry the tofu until golden on each side, about 2 minutes per side. Drain on a rack or paper towels. Cut into 1 inch chunks.
Toss the tofu, napa, and spring onions together. Whisk together the remaining ingredients, season with black pepper. Toss the dressing and salad together, serve at once.
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