I was at a vegetarian restaurant and they served a tofu egg salad pita that tasted exactly like real egg salad — in taste, texture and color. How can I make this at home?
Eggless tofu salad should be one of your first destinations on the tofu trail. However, I suggest you take the trip in two legs. Go halfway there with a compromise salad, then finish your journey with the pure thing. I’ll give you two recipes to keep you on the right track.
First, understand that tofu needs some attention. When you find it in the supermarket, you’ll need to choose from three varieties — soft firm and extra firm. Firm or extra firm are fine for making salad. Before you use it, drain and press out the excess water. Wash your hands and squeeze it. Or, for even firmer texture, place it between two plates with a weight (jar of water) on top for 20 minutes. Wrap it in plastic wrap and freeze solid. Thaw and squeeze out the excess liquid before using for the salad. Here’s the “half-way there recipe” for Tofu-Egg Salad, from The Tofu Cookbook, by Cathy Bauer & Juel Andersen, (Rodale Press).
- 2 hard-boiled eggs
- ½ cup tofu, squeezed & cut in ¼-inch cubes
- ½ cup egg mayonnaise or soy mayonnaise
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- dash white pepper, to taste
Mash the eggs with a fork and stir-in the tofu lightly. Combine the mayonnaise, lemon juice and pepper. Add to the egg-tofu mixture. Serve as a salad, or as a sandwich spread with sprouts or lettuce. Yield: 2 servings. Speaking of sandwiches, here is a recipe which includes pita breads, lettuce and tomatoes. And, it’s analyzed for nutrients.
This no-egg mixture satisfies tried-and-true egg-salad fans. The texture of tofu is much like that of eggs, yet it’s cholesterol-free.
Eggless Egg Salad Sandwiches
- 1 box (10 ½ ounces) reduced-fat firm silken tofu, diced
- ¼ cup minced sweet red peppers
- 3 tablespoons nonfat mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh Italian parsley
- 1 teaspoon yellow mustard
- ½ teaspoon reduced-sodium soy sauce
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- 4 whole-wheat pita breads
- 4 lettuce leaves
- 4 tomato slices
In a large bowl, combine the tofu, peppers, mayonnaise, relish, parsley, mustard, soy sauce, turmeric and garlic powder. Mix well and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, or until chilled. For the best flavor, make this salad ahead and refrigerate overnight to allow the flavors to develop.
Cut the very top off each pita. Open the pockets and line with the lettuce and tomatoes. Divide the filling among the pitas.
PER SANDWICH: 184 cal; 2.4g fat (12% of cals.); 9.4g protein; 32.6g carbohydrates; 3.9g dietary fiber; 0.0mg chol.; 408mg sodium. Serves 4.